Thursday, January 10, 2008

Duck Confit

On Christmas Eve, I waited 25 minutes in a line outside of University Seafood and Poultry for one pound of duck fat. The guy behind me was buying several pounds of Dungeness crab and people ahead of me were picking up turkey orders. Not me. My duck, butchered already and marinating in orange juice, garlic, rosemary and pomegranate molasses was waiting for me back home. My Uncle Steve, the one I am making wine with, shot some ducks while hunting and gave me four for to make Duck confit for Christmas. All I needed now was Duck fat. Confit means to cook in something's own fat- so duck cooked in it's own fat is called duck confit. After it has cooked for hours completely submerged the meat will fall off the bone. I like to serve it with a rich port wine and prune sauce. It was delicious and worth the wait.

Duck Confit
8 Duck Legs - Rinsed and pat dried well
1 # Duck Fat
Cup kosher Salt
Ground Pepper
4-6 sprigs of Fresh Thyme
4-6 Cloves of Garlic
2 Bay leaves- crushed
1 Tbsp crushed red pepper
2 Tbsp rosemary
Zest of 1 orange & Juice
Pomegranate Molasses

In a large pan place the ducks, generously sprinkle salt and pepper. Combine all the other ingredients and let it marinate overnight. Submerge the duck legs completely in the fat and cook it for 2-3 hrs in 200-250 degree oven. In a saute pan sear the skin side down till crispy.

Port wine and Prune Sauce
1 splash of olive oil
¼ c. shallot or onion chopped
1 cup of port
1 bay leaf
1 tsp. black pepper corns
4 prunes
1 large sprig of thyme
3 cups stock

Add olive oil to sauce pan over med-hi heat. Add onions and stir to caramelize- at least 5 minutes. Deglaze with port, add peppercorns, bay leaf, thyme, prunes and stock and continue over heat over medium heat and reduce until desired thickness- best if it coats the back of a spoon.


Serial Reader said...

I tried the recipe for the port wine sauce and made a couple of substitutions.

I didn't have port, so I used Madeira sauce, and I didn't have prunes, so I used figs. However, after 20 min. of deglazing the sauce did not thicken, so I added cornstarch. This thickened the sauce, which I then strained, and it was FANTASTIC!

Thank you for providing a template from which to create a great sauce for my duck confit.

Sustainable Eats said...

Melissa it was wonderful to meet you this afternoon! All the recipes on your blog sound amazing but this one caught my eye since I have two ducks too many right now...Brad from Abundant Acres in Toledo, WA actually lives in Seattle and raises geese, ducks, rabbits and sells them to restaurants now. he sells jarred goose fat, probably for much less than you bought it for at that store. I used to shop at that store but the prices led to me raising my own meat rabbits! I can connect you with him directly if you like!

Melissa said...

Thank you Annette!

It was great to meet you as well! It's never a bad thing to have too much duck or goose fat. :) Sure! I'd love any connections to quality meat. I'm so excited for your book too! Next time I get a chance and am prepared, I'd love to pick up a copy. Nice job on such a beautiful project! Cheers!