Saturday, December 24, 2016

Christmas Cooking Day 6: Duck Confit

My photography skills really are not that great and once again Jamie pointed out tonight that I have to stop trying to photograph on white plates.  I get it...that is my 2017 goal.  With Cate's new camera and perhaps a few new plates...I can hope for better looking pictures.

But for now...I rocked at making Duck Confit.  Even as we speak, Cate is on her way back from Cleveland, from seeing her first NBA game, and has asked that this be waiting for her.  So, regardless of the time, and Jamie is asleep...I have duck confit in the oven (along with au gratin potatoes).  I hope she stays awake long enough to enjoy them.

This is a surprisingly easy dish to just takes a bit of time...actually three days.  Living in Belgium, you could find duck confit as easily as finding chicken.   Twenty minutes away from us was a duck farm where we could buy confit, duck breasts and foie is as prevalent as chicken or turkey is here in the States.  But back in the U.S., duck confit seems to be only available at high end specialty shops or online purveyors.  It is a shame.

If you have been reading this blog over the week, you may have noticed the same side dishes day after day.  Yes, Jamie has been making his sautéed spinach...but it is so good, why not.  Each day, we try a different potato dish...tonight it was potatoes sautéed in duck fat, naturally.

Duck Confit
Duck Confit

4 duck legs
8 cloves garlic
4 sprigs of thyme
1-2T salt
4 c duck fat  (buy it from D'Artagnan)

Day 1:  Rinse the duck legs and pat dry with a paper towel.  Sprinkle 1T of salt in a baking dish.  Arrange duck snuggly in one layer.  Crush the garlic and place half under the duck legs along with 2 sprigs of thyme.  Sprinkle the remaining salt, garlic and thyme over the top.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 12-18 hours.

Day 2:  Rinse the salt from the duck legs.  Preheat oven to 300 degrees.  Melt duck fat in a soup pot.  Arrange the duck legs, skin side up, in one layer in a baking dish.  Cover with the melted duck fat and cook gently for three hours.  Once cooked and tender, allow to cool.  Place in a plastic container.  Strain the duck fat and pour over the cooked duck legs.  Cover and refrigerate.

Day 3.  Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.  Heat a skillet over medium-high heat.  Pull the cooked duck legs from the fat and place in the skillet, skin side down.  Sear for three minutes...remove to baking dish, skin side up and bake in the oven for 15 minutes until warmed.


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