Slow-baked duck and white beans with crispy crumb topping
Photo by Annabel Langbein Media
I like to partner this celebratory French cassoulet with a simple winter salad. Use a little watercress or radicchio, and radishes, to cut the richness.
Crispy crumb garnish
- Preheat oven to 220C fanbake.
- Prick duck all over with the tip of a knife (this helps the fat to release). Season with salt (about 1 tsp) and pepper. Place in a single layer in a large casserole dish that can be used on the stovetop. Bake uncovered until skin is golden and fat has rendered (about 45 minutes).
- Remove browned duck pieces and set aside. Drain off most of the fat and reserve to use in the crumb and to use when roasting potatoes.
- Reduce oven heat to 160C fanbake.
- Add onions, celery, garlic and chorizo to the dish and cook on stovetop over medium heat until onions are softened and just starting to brown (about 15 minutes).
- Add wine, stock, tomatoes, lemon zest and herbs and bring to a simmer. Season with about 1 tsp salt and pepper to taste, then simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat.
- Squeeze small nuggets of pork and fennel sausage out of the skins directly into the sauce, discarding the skins. Mix in drained beans and place browned duck on top, pressing it into the sauce a little but ensuring the skin remains above the liquid so it can stay crisp. Return to oven and bake until duck is very tender (about 1½-2 hours).
- While the duck is cooking, make the crispy crumb garnish. Melt butter or duck fat and mix with all remaining ingredients. Spread out on a roasting tray and bake at 160C fanbake for about 20 minutes until crispy. The crumb will keep in a sealed container for at least a week.
- Serve duck on a bed of beans with sprinkle of crispy crumbs.
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