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Spicy Braised Duck Legs

I was on a deadline last night and the boys were coming home late anyway. So, I wanted a dinner that was mostly hands-off. This requires a little bit of active time, then it goes in the oven, and you don't have to think about it again for over an hour. It was perfect for me to get in some good, uninterrupted writing time.

And that crispy duck skin! It's amazing. 

The spice blend I used was an Enthusiastic Kitchen Elf special which means that I really have no idea what he put in it. But, from what was left out on the counter, I know it had juniper berries, cardamom, coriander, paprika, and some cayenne. It was deliciously spicy. Maybe use your favorite spice blend...


Ingredients
  • 4 duck legs
  • 1 T butter
  • splash of olive oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and cubed
  • 1 C chicken stock, preferably homemade
  • 1 C red wine
  • 1 to 2 T spice blend (your choice - D whipped up something with juniper berries, cardamom, coriander, paprika, and some cayenne)

 Procedure
Preheat oven to 390 degrees F. In a Dutch oven, braiser, or other heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid, melt butter in a splash of olive oil. Place duck legs skin side down. Sprinkle 1/2 your spice blend on the duck. Cook for 6 to 7 minutes until the fat is rendered and the skin golden and crisped. Flip to the other side and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes. Sprinkle the rest of the spice blend on the second side of the duck.

Remove the duck to a plate. Place the onions in the pot. Lay the browned duck pieces on top. Pour in the chicken stock and wine. Bring to a boil, cover, and place in the oven. Braise for 75 minutes.

Raise the temperature of the oven to 450 degrees F. Return the duck to the oven, uncovered. Roast for another 10 to 15 minutes. 


The skin should be crispy and a deep mahogany brown. Serve immediately. 


I served this with a potato salad and carrot-bean salad. It was a great dinner...and I turned my article on time! Perfect.

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