Crispy Duck Leg Confit

The timeless elegance of French cuisine dives into the realm of delectable indulgence with Crispy Duck Leg Confit with roasted potatoes, fragrant basil pesto, and a tantalizing blood orange beurre blanc. Imagine the tender and succulent duck leg, lovingly cooked in its luxurious fat, until the meat is imbued with a depth of flavor that only time and patience can create. The basil pesto adds an herbaceous burst of freshness and complexity to the dish, while the blood orange beurre blanc brings zesty, citrusy notes in a velvety, buttery, tangy embrace. Friends, prepare your palates for an exquisite dining experience that combines tradition, innovation, and a touch of theatrical flair.

Crispy Duck Leg Confit Recipe

Serves 4-6

Ingredients for confit:

4-6 duck legs
2 lb duck fat
2 tbsp  kosher salt
2 tbsp  fresh ground pepper
2 carrots, large
2 celery stalks
1 sweet onion, large
  1. In a large braising pan, sear duck legs in 4 tablespoons of duck fat, skin down. Once browned, turn the legs over and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Add mirepoix vegetables (carrots, celery, onion), and sauté until onions caramelize. Add enough duck fat to fully cover the legs.
  3. Cover with aluminum foil and bake at 325 degrees for 2 ½ hours. When the duck is tender, remove it from the fat and let it rest.
  4. Before serving, flash in the oven at 425 degrees until the skin is crispy.
Ingredients for Potatoes: 
2 lb potatoes
2 tbsp kosher salt
Ingredients for pesto:
4 oz chopped fresh basil
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
2 oz chopped garlic
Zest of two lemons
Salt and pepper to taste
2 oz chopped onions
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 oz Parmesan
  1. Using a 4-quart sauce pot, boil potatoes for 15-20 minutes with two tablespoons of salt until al dente.
  2. Drain potatoes and set aside. While potatoes are boiling, using a blender, combine basil, lemon juice, garlic, and lemon zest; add salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Slowly add extra-virgin olive oil until blended. Combine potatoes and pesto in a mixing bowl. Finally, mix in Parmesan and serve.
Ingredients Blood orange beurre blanc:
2 cups white wine
2 cups blood orange juice
2 tbsp garlic, chopped
1 ½ c heavy cream
1 cup unsalted butter
Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Combine white wine, blood orange juice, and garlic and boil in a 4-quart sauce pot. Reducing the liquid by 75% (about 15 minutes).
  2. Add heavy cream and bring to a boil. Then add butter, and whisk until combined over medium heat.
  3. Strain through a fine strainer. Then season with salt and pepper.
To Plate:
Place duck legs on a dinner plate with potatoes. Drizzle orange beurre blanc around the entire plate.
Story by Kristin Kovacic/ Photography by Tira Howard/ Styling by Keith Recker/ Recipe by Chef Jackson Ault
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