I was at Foster Sundry last night and saw they had duck legs. I really didn't have anything in mind when I set out to make them but I knew I had wine at the apartment that I really, really didn't like and thought it'd be a good way to use it up without having to drink it.
This meal is great for people who don't want to babysit their dinners and who'd rather, say...watch TV, browse the internet, pet the cat, or pretty much anything that doesn't involve standing over a hot stove for an hour. Serve this with the mashed potatoes from our last duck recipe. You can also serve with polenta or roasted baby potatoes.
Skill Level: Easy
Time to Make: 2 hours 50 minutes (2 hours inactive)
2 duck legs
Salt and pepper to taste
1 bunch of small carrots
3 celery stalks
2 medium onions
4 garlic cloves
3 sprigs of rosemary
1 cup red wine (or use chicken stock)
1 cup chicken stock, plus more if needed
Prep Ingredients: Preheat oven to 400ºF. Trim the excess fat from the duck legs. Pat dry, season with salt and pepper, and set aside to bring to room temperature as you prepare the rest of the ingredients. Rinse the celery and carrots. Slice on a diagonal in 1" slices. Quarter the onions. Roughly chop the garlic.
Place the duck legs, skin side down, into a cold, ovenproof skillet. Turn the heat up to medium and cook for 10-15 minutes or until the skin is evenly browned and crispy and the fat is rendered. Spoon out excess duck fat. Flip and cook for 3-4 minutes and then remove from the pan and set aside. Leave two tablespoons of duck fat in the skillet.
Add the vegetables to the skillet and cook, stirring regularly, over medium heat until softened and beginning to char, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and rosemary sprigs and turn the heat to high for 1 minute (be careful not to burn the vegetables!). Once the skillet is very, very hot, add the red wine and scrape up any brown bits. Reduce heat to low and simmer until the wine has mostly reduced and the vegetables are soft, about 15 minutes. Place the duck legs, skin side up, in the center of the skillet and add 1 cup of chicken stock.
Place the entire skillet into the oven and cook for 1 hour. After 30 minutes, stir the vegetables gently and add chicken stock if necessary. Reduce heat to 325ºF and cook for an additional hour or until the duck is very tender. Remove the rosemary sprigs (most of the leaves will have fallen off) and discard.
To serve: Spoon vegetables over mashed potatoes (if serving) and top with a duck leg. Enjoy!
Designer and photographer living in NYC. I work as a design manager in ed tech and I make tasty recipes in my spare time!