Home Cooking 9

Making Duck Confit [split from Montreal]

fedelst1 | Feb 13, 200804:20 AM

(Note: This post was split from the Quebec board at: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/48917... -- The Chowhound Team).

Aside from the many places in the city where you can buy decent quality confit, have you considered preparing your own?

Usually nothing beats good home made, and the process is relatively simple. Albeit, the initial cost for the rendered duck fat can be a bit pricey, but this pales in comparison to the money you would spend for a similar quantity of product.

There are a number of sources for quality rendered fresh or frozen duck fat. At one point one of the producers being featured at costco even had 1 kg tubs of pure unadulterated fat at from what I remember as being less than $14. Duck legs are not that pricey either, you can even yield good product with the frozen legs at Aubut. Although Fresh does produce a better quality product.

As the process of confit requires that most of the water based liquids in the confit are evaporated out of the flesh, and that it is this water based liquid that contributes to fermentation and undesired rot, if you were to attempt a confit sous-vide, your sealed cryo'd pack would have the water based liqquid in the package, and this would initiate decay. I though the same thing when Cryo'd confit hit the market years ago.

What does concern me about a lot of the product passing itself off as confit is whether the confit has been matured. The whole confit process was designed to preserve meats in fat for long term storage (months). Eating confit that has been recently prepared does not do the confit justice, as it needs at least a few weeks for the flavours to mature. Anyone can simmer duck legs in duck fat, put it in a cryo or a bottle, and label it confit. Sourcing from a producer that understands and respects the process is important for quality product.

Just make sure that when you buy your confit, that the meat has not been exposed to air or residual juices, as you may be in for a bit of trouble. Another reason for home made.

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