is easy as one, two, three…
- Cure. You can be creative with the spice blend. What is your intention with the end product? What’s the flavor palate you’re using in the final dish? Pull from that. In this case, we’re going very simple.
- Rinse. Das it.
- Slowly and gently cooked in fat. Technically it should be cooked in it’s own fat, but duck fat can be expensive if you don’t have reserves in your larder.
We’re using olive oil, and a slow cooker. Don’t panic. The results are amazing, and so easy you’ll be ballin’ having confit with every meal. Olive oil is more cost effective, and the oil gets infused with garlic, onion and thyme. Later in the week, use the confit oil in other recipes like vinaigrettes, or matzo balls. Most ovens are kind of janky, and can’t maintain 200 degrees or lower very well. This is because the heating element cycles on and off giving you an inconsistent temperature which is not very gentle. The heating elements kick on until the inside sensor decrees that it is at 200, and cuts off. Unfortunately, the temperature is likely to keep going up, even when the element is off. When that fire is on blast, your confit is likely to boil which is bad. Besides, do you even trust, or know if when your oven is set to 325, that it is cooking at 325? Get a thermometer and test that piece out. Every oven I have had has been between 25-50 degrees off in either direction. Check yo self before you wreck yourself. We want gentle, warm oil so that the meat gets nice and silky. The ideal temp for confit is between 180 and 200 degrees. This is where the slow cooker comes to mind. On low that baby never hits a boil, however the temperature still isn’t perfect. I assumed that low meant it will cook around 180, and on high somewhere in the 225 arena. Wrong. The only difference between the low and high setting on your slow cooker is how long it takes to reach a simmer, or as crock-pot defines it, 209 degrees. Pretty darn close to our ideal temp though! It usually takes the crock pot 5 hours to get to 209, and at that point your confit will be close if not done. In my experience, and with my crockpot, confit is done start to finish in four hours.
- 2 duck legs
- 1 sprig thyme
- 1 onion, peeled and halved
- 1 head of garlic, cut crosswise
- 1 sprig of thyme
- couple cups of olive oil
Liberally salt and pepper the flesh and fat. Put the sprig of thyme on the flesh side of one of the legs, and then sandwich the second leg on top, flesh side down. Wrap super tight in a few layers of plastic. Place in a plastic container, incase it leaks. Wait 24 hours. The next day, rinse the legs off, and grab your slow cooker. Place the legs in the slow cooker, and arrange the aromatics around it. They’re here to not only give flavor to the oil, but to help raise the level of oil so we can use less! Pour in the olive oil until everything is just covered. Set the cooker to low, and set a timer for 3 hours. Occasionally peek at it to make sure it’s all good. If you have an older slow cooker, or things look too hot, turn it on warm for 30 minutes to bring the temperature down. When the leg bone is exposed and the flesh is tender when poked with a pairing knife you know you’re done. In my slow cooker, this again takes around 4 hours. If you tug on the leg and it pulls out clean from the thigh, you might have over done it. No biggie! Make rillettes. Transfer the legs and vegetables to a heat safe container, and pour the oil over top. Transfer it to the fridge with the lid off until its chilled, then put a lid on it. Let it relax in the oil for at least a day before using it.