What we had for dinner:

Duck rillettes

[ Previous ] 21 Dec 1995 14:01:52 -0500 [   Next   ]

Traditionally rillettes are made with pork or goose; this time I wanted to experiment, so I chose to try with a duck. It's more convenient than a goose anyway since it's smaller and more easily available.

I skinned and defatted the duck, and placed the skin, fat, neck, innards, carcass, and wing tips in a pressure cooker with an onion and a couple of garlic cloves, covered with water, and cooked a couple of hours under pressure.

In a regular pot, I placed the various meat pieces with several bay leaves and a tsp of sage, added water to almost cover, and simmered, covered, for about two hours (making sure that the liquid did not evaporate completely).

The cooking liquid and the broth from the pressure cooker were strained through a fine-meshed sieve and refrigerated overnight, while the meat was saved separately.

The next day, the solidified fat was removed from the broth, to which was added a tbsp of tomato purée, one carrot (sliced), salt, and a generous amount of pepper, and it was simmered for half an hour, then strained through a cloth.

Meanwhile, the meat was removed from the bones, gristle, and bits of fat, and pulled apart with two forks until no chunks were left. Equal amounts of broth and fat were added until the mixture took the consistency of a soft paste (it stiffens when cold), which was packed into a crock, covered with a layer of melted fat, and refrigerated.

Let warm up to room temperature and remove the protective fat before serving. Can be kept for weeks refrigerated under the fat layer, which protects it from the air.

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