There’s a great Asian market right around the corner from Zak’s office, so from time to time he stops to pick up a few things on his lunch hour. Last week, he came home bearing some really awesome gifts – duck wings! After some Googling around, I settled on using my new Le Creuset french oven to confit them. Because I didn’t have any duck fat laying around and didn’t feel like traveling from store to store in search of some, I decided to use olive oil. I followed Michael Ruhlman‘s recipe because, well, he’s awesome and a fellow Clevelander. I stuck to it pretty much to a tee, and ended up with flavorful and crispy duck wings that stood up beautifully to the bold flavors of this salad. Duck, cherries and blue cheese tossed with some mixed greens and drizzled with a tart pomegranate vinaigrette. Seriously, yum. I ate this exact same salad twice in a row and was craving it again.
Be aware that the duck wings do not yield a whole heck of a lot of meat. I used these six wings to make two hearty salads and didn’t have any left over because it only yielded about a cup and a half of meat and skins, max (though I will be making a duck stock with the bones!).
Duck Confit Summer Salad with Pomegranate Vinaigrette
From Michael Ruhlman (yay Clevelanders!)
6 duck wings
Kosher salt, as needed
3 whole cloves
3 cloves garlic
3 bay leaves, broken into pieces
Olive as needed (several cups)
Sprinkle the duck pieces all over with salt. Use a generous amount – 2 tbs. or so – as though you are salting a roast chicken or thick steak.
Roughly chop cloves, peppercorns, and garlic.
Place half of clove/peppercorn/garlic mixture on a large sheet of saran wrap. Lay duck pieces over top. Place a small piece of bay leaf on each duck wing. Sprinkle remainder of clove mixture over the duck. Wrap very tightly in saran wrap and then place in a plastic bag.
Refrigerate overnight or up to 48 hours.
Heat oven to 180º.
Place legs in an oven safe pot or dutch oven. Cover with olive oil (several cups). Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Immediately transfer (CAREFULLY) uncovered to the low oven. Cook for 6-10 hours until the legs are completely tender, the fat clear, and the legs resting on the bottom of the pan.
Remove from the oven. Cool, submerged in olive oil, to room temperate. Transfer to refrigerator and refrigerate for up to one month (or perhaps longer, depending on where you get your information).
When you desire to serve, remove the container from the refrigerator and bring to room temperature.
Heat oven to 425º.
Transfer wings to a tinfoil lined baking sheet. Bake in oven, turning once, for 15-25 minutes until the meat is warmed through and the skin is crispy.
Remove from oven and remove the meat and skin from the bones of the duck. Shred and serve warm, keeping warm in an oven if necessary.
Shredded duck confit, see above
4-5 cups salad greens (I used spring mix)
3-4 tbs. pomegranate vinaigrette, see below
1/3 cup dried cherries
1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese
Toss together cherries, crumbled blue cheese, and lettuce. Top with duck and drizzle with vinaigrette.
3 tbs. pomegranate juice
2 tbs. apple cider vinegar
1 tbs. balsamic vinegar
2 tbs. canola oil
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. sugar
Whisk together ingredients until well combined.