Monday, January 25, 2016


Recently there was a great buy on duck legs at the market. I rarely cook duck, so I took the opportunity to do some online searching for a good recipe. I ended up using a recipe from the New York Times, but also changed it a bit to include red wine because I think duck and red wine go so well together.

The results were awesome, like dining at a fancy restaurant, probably a French one. The dish was rich in flavor, full of roasted veggies, had a wonderful sauce in the bottom of the pot and went really well with some boiled red potatoes. It took a little more time than usual, but was well worth it.

Braised Duck Legs with Veggies
based on recipe at Diners Journal/NY Times

  • 2 duck legs, trimmed of excess fat
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup red wine (I used a nice Pinot)
  • 2 large onion
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
  • 1 pound carrots
  • 6 celery stalks
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 4 oz. sliced, cleaned mushrooms
  • 2 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade.

  • 1. Put duck legs, skin side down, in a skillet large enough to accommodate all ingredients comfortably; turn heat to medium. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Brown duck legs carefully and evenly, sprinkling them with salt and pepper as they cook. Meanwhile, peel and dice vegetables.
  • 2. When legs are nicely browned, turn them over and sear for just a minute or two. Remove to a plate; remove fat to a small bowl. Add red wine to deglaze the pan, then simmer wine for 1o minutes to reduce. Pour red wine over chicken and wipe out skillet. Add just enough of the reserved fat to cook the vegetables. Discard rest of fat or use for another purpose.  Add vegetables and thyme to skillet along with some salt and pepper. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until they begin to brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Return duck legs to pan, skin side up and juices/wine, and add stock; it should come about halfway up duck legs but should not cover them. Turn heat to high, bring to a boil, and transfer to oven.
  • 3. Cook uncovered for 30 minutes, then lower heat to 350 degrees. Continue to cook, uncovered & undisturbed, until duck is tender and liquid reduced, at least another half hour. The duck is done when a thin-bladed knife pierces the meat with little resistance. When done, duck will hold nicely in a warm oven for another hour. Serve hot.


  1. A rich, fatty meat, duck is kind of a comfort food (she says, from having one bite of duck ONCE, years and years ago) so it makes sense in this yummy comfort-food looking dish!

  2. Tanita, fortunately a lot of the fat cooks off, but it is still delish.
    So, Congratulations! Peas and Carrots, the BOOK!! Is it in stores yet? On Amazon?You are so amazing the way you keep coming up with new ideas and then actually writing these wonderful books for young adults. Peas and Carrots by Tanita Davis folks!!

  3. Wow, I'm blown away by the rich color that just screams great taste! Looking really excellent.