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Thornhill Duck Confit with Gratin Dauphinoise & Irish Purple Sprouting Broccoli

Thu, 17 October 2019

Thornhill Duck Confit with Gratin Dauphinoise & Irish Purple Sprouting Broccoli

Serves 4

Ingredients

For the duck confit:

6 duck legs

1 garlic clove, peeled and sliced

6 star anise

4 tbsp coarse sea salt

6-7 fresh thyme sprigs

2 cinnamon sticks

1 litre duck fat

For the jus:

200ml white wine

400ml chicken or veal stock

40g unsalted butter, chilled and diced
1 tbsp honey

For the broccoli:

300g Irish purple sprouting broccoli

knob of butter

sea salt and freshly ground white pepper

Gratin Dauphinoise, to serve (see separate recipe)

Method

1. To marinade the duck legs, place them in a single layer in a shallow non-metallic dish and scatter over the garlic, star anise, salt, thyme and cinnamon. Cover with clingfilm.  Place in fridge overnight to allow the flavours to penetrate the duck.

2. Preheat the oven to 120C. Rinse the marinade off the duck legs and pat dry with kitchen paper.  Return the duck legs to the dish. Heat the duck fat gently in a pan, then pour it over the duck legs to cover them completely. Place in the oven and cook for about 4 hours until very tender and the meat is almost falling from the bone. Remove from the heat and leave to cool in the fat.

3. When ready to serve, preheat the grill to low. Remove the duck confit and brush off any excess fat. Arrange the duck legs on a grill rack, skin-side up but don’t put the rack too close to the grill for the skin will burn. Season with salt and cook for 10-15 minutes until the skin is crisp and golden.

4. To make the jus, carefully pour off all the excess fat from roasting tin and place directly on the hob. Pour in the wine and bring to the boil, scraping the bits off the bottom of the tin. Strain into another pan, then add the stock and reduce by half. Whisk in the butter and honey and season to taste.

5. Trim the broccoli and put in a steamer to cook for 2-3 minutes until just tender. Season with salt and toss in the butter.

6. To serve, arrange the crispy duck confit on warmed plates with the gratin dauphinoise and steamed purple sprouting broccoli. Drizzle over a little of the jus to finish.

Gratin Dauphinoise

Serves 4-8

Ingredients

400ml milk

300ml cream

4 garlic cloves, crushed

good pinch freshly grated nutmeg

900g potatoes, cut into wafer-thin slices

butter, for greasing

sea salt and freshly ground white pepper

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 160C. Pour the milk and cream into a pan and add the garlic and nutmeg. Season to taste and just heat through but do not allow the mixture to boil, then quickly remove from the heat.

2. Arrange a third of the potatoes in an ovenproof dish that is about 23cm x 18cm and that least 5cm deep. Season to taste and scatter over half of the bacon, if using, then add another third of the potatoes in an even layer, season to taste and scatter over the remaining bacon. Arrange the rest of the potatoes on top in an attractive overlapping layer and carefully pour over the milk mixture.

3. Cover the potato gratin with a piece of foil and sit on a baking sheet. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes until cooked through and lightly golden. Compress the gratin every 20 minutes or so with a fish slice to make sure it’s compact.

4. Remove the gratin from the oven and leave to settle for 5 minutes, then cut into portions and serve immediately.

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