Barbary Duck Confit

Duck confit is a specialty of Gascony. The legs of the duck are cured in salt, and flavoured with thyme and garlic. They are then rinsed to remove the salt, dried and cooked slowly in duck fat until they are extremely tender. The cooked legs are then left to cool in the fat. In this state the confit will keep for a few weeks in the fridge.

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Confit Duck with Puy Lentils – serves 4

4 Barbary duck legs
4 cloves garlic
2 sprigs thyme
2 bay leaf
30g salt

200g Puy lentils
Olive oil
1 small onion – finely chopped
1 carrot – finely chopped
1 leek – finely chopped
Dijon mustard
chopped parsley & tarragon

Stage 1

  • Smash the garlic & chop the thyme & bay. Rub into the duck legs. Scatter over the salt & leave for 24 hours to cure.
  • Pre-heat oven to 150C.
  • Wash & dry the duck legs & place in a deep oven tray.
  • Place the duck fat in a saucepan & heat.
  • Pour the fat over the duck legs. Cover tightly with foil & cook for 3 hours.
  • Remove & allow to cool in the fat. Store under fat in the fridge until needed.

Stage 2

  • Pre-heat oven to 200C
  • Scrape fat from the duck
  • Return the duck to oven skin side down to crisp up and re-heat. A non-stick pan is ideal for this.
  • Place lentils in a large pot, cover with water and bring to the boil.
  • As soon as it boils drain the lentils & set aside.
  • Heat a little olive oil in a pot and gently cook the vegetables until soft.
  • Add the lentils and reheat, adding enough water or stock to give a sauce.
  • Stir in mustard & herbs to taste.
  • Season and serve with the crispy duck.
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