Duck Confit with French Lentils Duck Confit with French Lentils

Duck Confit with French Lentils

Left over duck fat can be used for cooking all sorts of things, roast potatoes, goulashes, stews. You can keep it in a jar in the fridge, just make sure there are no meat juices in it. You could also cheat and not make the confit, very good quality tinned versions are available.

Method


For the duck

1. In a large roasting tin, rub the duck legs with the salt, juniper berries, cloves, bay leaves and thyme. Cover with cling film and leave overnight

2. The next day, put a large pan on a low heat (big enough for all the duck legs)

3. Rinse the duck legs under cold water to rinse off the salt and pat them dry with kitchen towel

4. Put them into the pan and spoon over the duck fat. Let the legs cook in the fat on a really low heat for 2 to 2 1/2 hours. To test the meat, take a leg out of the pan using some tongs and pinch the meat, it should pull apart easily

5. Leave to cool. If you aren't going to use the legs quite soon at this stage you can keep them, totally immersed in the fat for a couple of weeks, covered in the fridge





For the lentils

1. In a large casserole, on a medium heat with a spoonful or two of duck fat, sweat down the carrots, celery and onions, until the vegetables are translucent

2. Add the lentils, stock and potatoes and give it a stir, cook for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are soft and most of the liquid has been absorbed,

3. Whilst the lentils are cooking, pre-heat the oven to 200°C

4. Take the duck out of the fat, wiping any excess fat away and lay the legs and place in a roasting tin, they will need about 20-30 minutes in the hot oven, you want the skin nice and crispy

5. To finish, add the Swiss chard, olive oil and vinegar to the lentils, and cook for a few minutes check the seasoning and adjust as necessary

6. On 6 warm dinner plates, or bowls, place a generous spoonful or two of the lentils, on top of that, a spoonful of créme fraiche and swirl that around gently with a knife, top with a duck leg and serve