Duck has to be one of my favorite birds to eat and cook. It doesn’t hurt that one of the side effects of cooking duck is an extra cache of delicious duck fat that can be used for a great many things in the kitchen. It is, after all referred to by many a cook as either culinary or white gold. It’s also amazingly simple to cook and the result is a much fancier and elegant dish compared to that of chicken. So if you want to impress someone, give this a try.
With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, I figured duck would be a perfect thing to make for dinner. My girlfriend and I decided to celebrate Valentine’s today since we’re both quite busy on the actual day. This recipe is something I’ve been working on for awhile and I think I’ve finally nailed it.
- 2 Duck Legs
- 1 Tbs Cracked Black Pepper
- 1 Tbs Smoked Sea Salt
- Using a sharp knife, score the skin of duck legs.
- Season legs generously on both sides with smoked sea salt and black pepper.
- Place legs in a cold pan skin side down and heat to medium heat. This will allow fat to render out of skin and will make it crispy. Cook 5-7 minutes until skin starts to brown.
- Place pan in oven heated to 400°F and roast 8-12 minutes.
- Remove duck from pan and allow to rest 5-10 minutes.
- Pour out all but 1 Tbs of rendered duck fat and return pan to stove over medium heat. See note.
- Add shallot to pan and carmelize.
- Add red wine/grape juice to pan and reduce by half.
- Add cherries and cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Add chicken stock and reduce until syrupy. Remove pan from heat.
- Stir in butter to finish sauce. Serve over duck legs and enjoy.
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