Confit of Duck

From issue #1.
Confit of Duck

Serves: 4


4 duck marylands (leg and thigh)
2 sprigs of thyme
strips of lemon and orange zest
6 cloves garlic, unpeeled and lightly crushed
2 bay leaves
1-2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons black peppercorns, crushed
2-3 cups duck fat or light olive oil, enough to cover the duck


Use a sharp knife to cut the leg skin just above the knuckle – [this allows the meat to shrink down neatly during cooking].

Combine all the spices, salt, pepper and herbs and toss the duck legs in the mixture, rubbing it well into the skin. Cover and refrigerate for twelve hours.

Preheat the oven to 150˚C.

Remove the duck from the seasoning and rinse off under cold running water. Dry and place in a shallow roasting dish or cast iron pan.

Heat the duck fat slowly in a saucepan until quite hot but not boiling or smoking. Pour over the duck to cover and slow-cook in the oven for 2-3 hours until the meat is meltingly tender. Cool in
the fat and refrigerate if necessary, also in the fat, for up to a week.

When ready to serve, preheat the oven to 180˚C. Remove the duck pieces from the fat and scrape off as much as possible. Place the duck on a rack over a pan and heat through. Then, in order to crisp up the skin, place under a preheated grill for a few minutes. By the time the duck is hot and crisp all the fat will have drained away.

Serve the duck straight away with creamy polenta or mash, or as the French do with potatoes sautéed in duck fat. A crisp green salad with a sharp dressing and a glass of red wine are essential
accompaniments. Serves 4