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Old 05-15-2011, 01:36 PM   #1
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Duck confit: how long to cook it?

I have made duck confit a few times, mainly following Judy Rogers Zuni Cafe cookbook recipe as well as Buchon's cookbook and Michael Ruhlman's online post as guides (How To Make Duck Confit <br/>Fall Is Here, Time to Preserve Duck! | Michael Ruhlman). What I have found confusing is that these sources are very diverse on the time---Judy says 1 1/2-2 hours (about 200 degrees) and Ruhlman, Emeril, Thomas Keller all fall on the side of 12 hours (about the same temp).

Using Judy Rogers shorter time, and using a tip from somewhere online about checking with a bamboo skewer (when it can be inserted without resistance, the duck is finished), I have found a very satisfactory product/ On the other hand, if cooking for a much longer time results in even more wonderful results (and doesn't result in a product that falls apart when trying to crisp it after a few months in the fridge), I would be delighted to do that. I just don't want to re-invent the wheel if there is no reason. I find it very curious that there is such a disparity in the times...

Thanks
Ken K

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Old 05-15-2011, 02:00 PM   #2
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I've done it once or twice and never as long as 10-12 hours. More like 2 1/2 - 3 hours.

However, you never know. I guess you should try the same recipe except cook it for 10-12 hours and see if there is a difference.
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Old 05-15-2011, 02:18 PM   #3
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"I guess you should try the same recipe except cook it for 10-12 hours and see if there is a difference."

Were it not for the expense and time, I would do just that, but if someone else has tried it, I am more than willing to listen to the experience.

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KK
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Old 05-15-2011, 02:20 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kdkrone View Post
"I guess you should try the same recipe except cook it for 10-12 hours and see if there is a difference."

Were it not for the expense and time, I would do just that, but if someone else has tried it, I am more than willing to listen to the experience.

Thanks
KK

I agree. But if no one has that experience, you are left with the other option.
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Old 05-15-2011, 02:29 PM   #5
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Agreed. But I only posted this an hour ago, so let's see what gets posted.

The other experiment in my mind is to make batches at one-month intervals for 4-5 months, then taste them after the last batch to compare. Our experience has been that after 1-2 months the confit "seems" to be better, but perhaps that is because it is always so good. One thing I have noticed is that no restaurant's confit seems to be as good as ours, and my assumption is that commercially it makes no financial sense to age it, so I suspect most "confit" is just duck cooked in duck fat and served within a week or so. The texture just doesn't seem to be there...

I am not sure what happens in that subsequent number of weeks that helps confit "age"--any thoughts??

Cheers
Ken
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Old 05-15-2011, 02:34 PM   #6
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Sorry, no. Confit doesn't last a long time around here.
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Old 05-15-2011, 02:39 PM   #7
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Welcome to DC.

Josie
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Old 12-11-2011, 06:42 PM   #8
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Just followup for anyone who may stumble on this thread. I think one thing that I did not take into consideration was the temperature of each recipe. For example, Ruhlman likes tomkeep the temperTure about 180 degrees and Judy Rogers likes 203-205. The doesn't seem like a huge difference, but I do recall from chemistry that chemical reaction rates generally double every 10 degrees Centigrade (18 degrees Fahrenheit). My experience is that I like the compromise between cooking the duck for about 5-6 hours at 200 degrees or so. This results in tender meat, but not so tender that it falls apart when served ( we like to serve it with crisped skin as one piece). Cheers, all!
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Old 12-11-2011, 08:17 PM   #9
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Thanks for reporting back. Interesting results.
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Old 12-12-2011, 11:54 AM   #10
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I only confit duck legs, I put then in a vacpak bag with duck fat and any herbs I fancy seal then I put them in a water filled slow cooker for about 10 hrs.
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