Impossibly Crispy Duck Legs and Potatoes

Do you like your duck legs to have crispy skin with mouthwateringly juicy, perfectly-seasoned meat inside? If the answer is yes, then this is the recipe for you! The far around and under the skin renders down to make the perfect cooking fat for the potatoes that you’re going to arrange around your duck legs to roast until they’re so crispy that your neighbors will hear you crunch into them, while the inside stays soft and creamy. This is the perfect dish to showcase how a few simple ingredients can be transformed into a gourmet meal for a low-maintenance Shabbat or a stay-at-home date night.

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Pour about 1/2 cup of kosher salt into an air-tight food storage container (ideally glass, and large enough to store both duck legs and enough water to submerge them) and fill about 3/4 of the container with water. Swirl the water around to ensure that the salt dissolves. Once dissolved, place the duck legs skin-up into the water. Make sure that they are submerged (if not, add a bit more water). Affix the lid to the container and refrigerate for 24 -48 hours.

Remove the duck legs from the brining liquid, dry them thoroughly, then sprinkle a little kosher salt and black pepper onto the skin. Set them aside to come to room temperature. Once they have, preheat your oven to 400°F.

Heat a large roasting pan or Dutch oven on your stovetop at medium-high. Pour your oil in and heat until rippling. Add your duck legs skin-down onto the pan and sear until they have a nice golden brown color and some of the fat has begun to render down.

Turn off the heat and add your potatoes to the fat, rolling them around to coat each piece of potato in duck fat.

Sprinkle salt and pepper over your potatoes. Sprinkle paprika over your duck and potatoes, then arrange your thyme and garlic them as well. Put the pan into the oven to roast for 1 hour.

Remove the pan from the oven and toss the potatoes around so that the bottoms don’t burn and they crisp evenly.

Roast for another hour. Remove from the oven and rest for 10 minutes. Serve in the roasting pan (on a trivet, of course).

Impossibly Crispy Duck Legs and Potatoes

Becca Gallick-Mitchell
Triumphantly crispy duck skin encasing tender, juicy meat that falls right off the bone, and paired with equally crisp potatoes cooked in the duck fat. A true one-pan wonder!
Cook Time 2 hrs 10 mins
Brining and Resting Time 1 d 10 mins
Total Time 1 d 1 hr 10 mins
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Servings 2

Ingredients
  

  • 2 duck legs thoroughly dried with paper towels
  • 1 Tbsp avocado oil (or other oil with a high smoke point)
  • 1 lb Yukon Gold potatoes (or more if you want leftovers), scrubbed (I prefer to leave mine unpeeled, but you can peel them as well) and cut into chunks
  • 5 large cloves garlic, crushed under the flat side of a chef's knife
  • 1 small sprig thyme
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

Instructions
 

  • Pour about 1/2 cup of kosher salt into an air-tight food storage container (ideally glass, and large enough to store both duck legs and enough water to submerge them) and fill about 3/4 of the container with water. Swirl the water around to ensure that the salt dissolves. Once dissolved, place the duck legs skin-up into the water. Make sure that they are submerged (if not, add a bit more water). Affix the lid to the container and refrigerate for 24-48 hours.
  • Remove the duck legs from the brining liquid, dry them thoroughly, then sprinkle a little kosher salt and black pepper onto the skin. Set them aside to come to room temperature. Once they have, preheat your oven to 400°F.
  • Heat a large roasting pan or Dutch oven on your stovetop at medium-high. Pour your oil in and heat until rippling. Add your duck legs skin-down onto the pan and sear until they have a nice golden brown color and some of the fat has begun to render down.
  • Turn off the heat and add your potatoes to the fat, rolling them around to coat each piece of potato in duck fat.
  • Sprinkle salt and pepper over your potatoes. Sprinkle paprika over your duck and potatoes, then arrange your thyme and garlic them as well. Put the pan into the oven to roast for 1 hour.
  • Remove the pan from the oven and toss the potatoes around so that the bottoms don't burn and they crisp evenly. Roast for another hour. Remove from the oven and rest for 10 minutes. Serve in the roasting pan (on a trivet, of course).
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