A whole roast duck is a wonderful thing, but not an easy dish to get right. Why not try just roasting the legs for Christmas lunch in this easy to do dish? Whilst the duck legs are roasting away, the juices and fat from the meat will be rendered down and will give you some great duck fat roasted potatoes on the side. Serve with some buttered green beans and a simple cherry sauce and you have a different take on a roasted bird this Christmas.
6 duck legs
Chinese five spice
2 heads of garlic
1.5 kg dutch cream potatoes
400ml chicken stock
200ml red wine
4tbs cherry jam
20 fresh cherries
Pre-heat your oven to 180 degrees.
Season your duck legs with salt and a pinch of Chinese five spice, rub them into the skin.
Heat a large pan over a medium heat and seal the duck legs skin side down until you have some colour and the fat is starting to render, for about 5 to 10 minutes. Whilst this is happening, dice your potatoes and scatter them in a large roasting pan. Add the 2 whole heads of garlic and some rosemary sprigs.
When the duck is ready, turn over and seal quickly on the other side. Place the duck legs in the roasting pan making sure they are placed snugly between the potatoes and pour over the rendered duck fat from the pan. Place in the oven and roast for about 1 ½ hours. Whilst cooking, move around your potatoes occasionally so they go brown and crisp.
When the duck legs are cooked through and your potatoes are ready, remove from the pan and keep warm. Pour off the excess duck fat (keep aside for more potatoes!) and then place the roasting tray on the stove.
Add your red wine and deglaze the pan, reduce by ½. Add your chicken stock and once again reduce by ½. Add the cherry jam and stir through to dissolve and thicken. Place in a sauce jug.
Place the duck legs on warmed plates with the roast potatoes and garlic cloves. Pour over the cherry sauce and garnish with fresh cherries if you like.