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Restaurants & Bars 17

Duck confit - the French hambuger?

Piggyinthemiddle | Nov 11, 201108:06 AM

This is not a diatribe against confit - or heaven forbid, the hamburger. There is nothing like a good, juicy hamburger with all the fixin's, or a classic confit, with slightly crusty skin on the outside and succulent meat next to the bone. However, both have been done to death by being ubiquitous.
Time was (25-20 years ago) when the confit was to be found only in the Dordogne, Gers and to a lesser extent, in the Landes. It was the traditional way to make use of the leftovers from making the more important conserve - foie gras. But something happened in those last decades - now, instead of appearing on menus only in the Southwest or Alsace, foie gras seems to be everywhere in France - likewise confit. But whereas, putting it baldly, foie gras is now (just) one step up the gastronomic social scale (certainly in the said Dordogne/Gers - it is far pricier and exclusive in other regions), confit appears on menus and cartes from Paris to Calais, from the Loire to Nice to Grenoble. It has lost its "gout de terroir", and become a sad fallback for restaurants who want to have a touch of the provincial. When I make this "hambuger-confit" quip to the French, they largely agree. Do other chowhounds?

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