December has been a month of plenty – and some of the plenty can make a January dinner into a feast. The christmas duck has left a huge bowl full of wonderful, rich grease to be used for a round of confit de canard. We gratefully thank Gastromand for the inspiration.
Day 1: Duck legs are thoroughly rubbed with a mix of 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp sugar, zest of one lemon, rosemary, garlic, and pepper. Leave in the fridge for 24-36 hours.
Day 2 (and a half): rinse off the spices from the meat and put in a pan and cover with the fat. Cook at low temperature for 3-6 hours under lid.
Put the legs in a clean bowl or glass. Cover with the fat and put in the fridge. After 1-2 days the legs can be used. Remove from the container, heat on a pan or in the oven for about 10 minutes.
It is not as fat and unhealthy as one might expect. The confit-method is an old way of preserving different kinds of meat. It keeps well as long as it is covered in fat and it tastes wonderful. Most of the fat melts right off the meat when it is re-heated, leaving just juicy, tender duck on your plate.
We generally try some grenache with the confit de canard, both from Chateauneuf du Pape – Reine Jeanne 2009 from Ogier and also from Priorat - Finca del Puig 2003. It tastes well, but maybe we should have tried some Pinot Noir instead. Oh, well. That'll be next year... if not sooner.