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I know it’s tooting my own horn, but I have to say this – the Duck Confit I made? Is amazing. A tango of taste in my mouth. Why did I wait so long before making this dish myself?

And the Duck Prosciutto? Also seriously fantastic.

Both are totally made of win (and yummy rich meat) and I have to give major kudos to the Ruhlman/Polcyn Charcuterie book for making it straightforward and demystifying both processes.

Two of the eight legs from the confit fell apart as I was removing them from their slow simmering bath of goose fat (doesn’t that sound great?) and put them into jars. Amazingly, duck fat was available at Whole Paycheck Foods, but at an extra third the price! Any decent French farmhouse wife would have thrown up her hands in horror and killed the goose too.

So I packed four of the whole legs into one huge Talas clip-top jar, deboned the other four and parcelled them out into three of the re-used fat jars. It’ll be easier to melt the fat and extract the meat like that for stir-fries and stews.

Mark has received one of the three jars of shredded confit, for when Tanya feels like cooking him duck (times like this I love that  is a vegetarian!) but as she’s away this weekend I might break out the whole legs and do roast duck with honey and lavender, and goose-fat fried potatoes. Mmmm.

The proscuitto was delicious. Yes, I mean was.

They were pretty tiny duck breasts to begin with, and once they’d lost a third through dry curing, the rounds of meat were about 3cm wide and 2 cm high. Mini proscuitto! But the taste was rich and tasty, with a peppery afterburn from the ground white pepper crust, the texture was amazing and altogether it was a pretty awesome result for my first attempt at red meat curing.

I think I’ll hunt down some bigger breasts [sniggers like a fourteen year old schoolboy] and repeat. I bought a digital hygrometer to tell the humidity and temperature in the kitchen. I might have to investigate making a drying cupboard…

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