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Duck Fat - the gift that keeps on giving?

MMRuth Oct 8, 2006 09:30 PM

So, I excavated the remaining two duck legs from the duck confit I made over Labor Day and made rillettes. I now have lots of duck fat, which was used to make the confit. If I melt and strain it, can I save it and use it again?

  1. tbear Oct 8, 2006 09:35 PM

    Yup. It will last a long time. Great for sauteed potatoes (pomme sarladaise) among other things.

    1 Reply
    1. re: tbear
      MMRuth Oct 8, 2006 09:39 PM

      Thanks - I've sauteed potato balls in goose fat, will have to try with the duck fat. Off to go to get some rillettes before my DH disappears it all!

    2. Tom M of Durham NC Oct 8, 2006 09:37 PM

      Try using it to make a roux. Then make duck gumbo. Mmmmmmm.

      1. h
        HeelsSoxHound Oct 9, 2006 12:48 PM

        oh yeah... duck fat potatoes... yummers. also great for cooking grilled cheese in... slow poach high-fat fish such as salmon at low temps in it... this is a totally sinful method that a friend of mine who owns a rest. in boston taught me. one of the richest, most succulent pieces of fish you'll ever have.
        or, hell, make more confit! it's not like it goes bad if you store it properly...

        1. FoodFuser Oct 9, 2006 01:19 PM

          I don't want to wax schmaltzy, but I am very curious: How far superior is duck fat to the far easier/cheaper to extract Chicken fat?

          I keep pork and chicken fat on hand, but simply haven't ventured into duck. All of the Larousse grade recipes call for duck fat for confit or rillette, yet I must admit that a chicken thigh confit done in chicken fat is pretty darn good.

          So bring it on. I would hope that those who respond have done a comparison between chicken and duck fat.

          2 Replies
          1. re: FoodFuser
            Hungry Celeste Oct 9, 2006 08:51 PM

            The two have completely different flavors. The fat of each carries a slightly intensified essence...chicken fat is mild, rich, easy to like. Duck fat is far more intense, slightly gamy, and very fragrant (a little goes a long way). I find that duck fat packs more of a flavor punch, esp on bland foods like potatoes.

            1. re: FoodFuser
              JudiAU Oct 13, 2006 12:10 AM

              Duck fat is far tastier in my opinion. Easy to render and even easier buy. Goose, of course, is the Queen of all.

            2. h
              HeelsSoxHound Oct 9, 2006 08:44 PM

              duck fat is richer. it also carries a touch of that gaminess that duck intrinsically features, and a sweetness that chicken fat doesn't have. i agree that chicken thigh confit is also excellent--but easier to distract? i've never had any trouble with duck fat... *shrug* both wonderful, though, especially with the weather getting cooler.

              1. FoodFuser Oct 12, 2006 08:44 PM


                I see some quackery in my future. Thanks Celeste and Hound for responding.

                Checked by phone with my Asian market and they offer frozen "ducklings" and "tray packed leq quarters", but no pre-rendered fat. Making plans for some DuckWork when the temps drop into the 20's at night.

                An Aside to the BostonCarrboroHound: email me. I was in CH in the 80's, part of getting the first farmers market there... I'd love to hear how things have evolved.

                1 Reply
                1. re: FoodFuser
                  coolbean98 Oct 18, 2006 05:05 AM

                  I just rendered the fat from a duck this afternoon. The nearest place to me that sells pre-rendered duck fat sells it for about $6/pint, and from one duckling ($11) I got about 3/4 pint, so I saved a good amount of money considering I also got the legs for confit, breasts (which I had tonight avec pruneaux and armagnac), liver for pate, and stock. What a bargain!

                2. k
                  Kishari Oct 13, 2006 12:46 AM

                  D'Artagnan carries it. And you can order it online. I keep mine in the freezer, and have used it in place of butter to seal a turkey before roasting. Gave it a much richer flavor with some depth. Don't get me started about how good the skin was!


                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Kishari
                    kimcheater Oct 17, 2006 08:42 PM

                    Or just save the drippings if you ever get roast duck from Chinese takeout. I find it keeps pretty well in a covered jar in the refrigerator, and I like to use it to pop popcorn in.

                  2. a
                    ashwood Oct 13, 2006 06:40 AM

                    you can use it for more confit if you wish. as long as you throw out the gelatinous stuff at the bottom when it settles.

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