Turkey leg confit

Turkey leg confit

Turkey leg confit recipe

This recipe is inspired by the turkey leg I fell head-over-heels with at the Purple Pig in Chicago. A whopping leg of tenderly cooked bird that’s worthy of a bacchanalian feast.

I’ve taken the Purple Pigs idea of teaming it with delightfully crispy fried lentils, but brought in some eschallots and witlof lightly braised in pomegranate molasses and muscovado sugar as well. I find the sweet/sour/bitterness works nicely with the tender bird.

Confit often involves olive or vegetable oil – even duck fat – but I’ve gone the whole hog (quite literally) and used rendered pork fat.  The flavour that comes out of the confit turkey meat takes on another level; almost a lamb-like flavour with that beautiful collagen stickiness you feel between the teeth. Along with the herbs in the marinade, it’s truly worth the extra effort.

Turkey leg confit recipe

Turkey leg confit recipe

Turkey leg confit recipe

 

Print Recipe
confit turkey legs with pomegranate braised eschallots & witlof, fried lentils
Inspired by the turkey leg confit at the Purple Pig in Chicago, this is one delicious way to cook up your turkey drumsticks.
Turkey leg confit recipe
Course Main Dish
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Marinade
Confit
Sides
Course Main Dish
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Marinade
Confit
Sides
Turkey leg confit recipe
Instructions
Marinade
  1. Place the fennel seeds and peppercorns into a small pan over medium-high heat. As soon as the fennel begins to pop, swirl the spices around and turn off the heat. Place the toasted spices into a mortar and pound with the pestle until coarsely ground. Stir in the brown sugar, salt and cayenne. Rub the spice mix over the turkey legs, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for a minimum 3 hours, or preferably overnight.
Confit
  1. Preheat oven to 150°C.
  2. Take a saucepan or Dutch oven-style pan that will fit the turkey legs snugly and in one layer. Place the herb sprigs on the bottom of the pan.
  3. Remove the turkey from the fridge, pat dry with a paper towel and lay the legs over the herbs. Dot the whole garlic cloves around the legs. Carefully pour the lard over the turkey legs to cover completely. Put the lid on the pan and cook in the oven for approximately 3 hours.
  4. When done, leave the whole pan to cool completely on the stovetop or bench. Remove the turkey legs from the fat and lay them on a plate. See notes.
  5. Cover with plastic and refrigerate when needed.
  6. The confit step can be done a day in advance.
Sides
  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C.
  2. Place the pomegranate molasses, sugar, virgin oil, water and salt into a large mixing bowl. Stir to combine. Add the eschallots and witlof and toss gently to coat.
  3. Lay the vegetables in a single layer in a large ovenproof dish that will also fit the turkey legs. Take the turkey legs from the fridge and nestle amongst the vegetables bake in the oven, basting halfway through. After 20 minutes, remove the turkey legs, wrap in foil and set aside. Return the tray of vegetables to the oven for another 10 minutes.
  4. During the baking process, heat the litre of vegetable oil in a saucepan and deep-fry the lentils for 30 seconds, to a minute. Strain them from the oil and allow to sit on kitchen towels to absorb any drips. Season with salt.
  5. To serve, arrange the turkey legs on a platter with the vegetables and lentils and drizzle over any juices left in the braising pan.
Recipe Notes

Don't throw out the used lard. You can melt it again and pour it through a very fine strainer and store it in a sealed jar or container in the fridge. Use it wherever you use oil - to fry onions, roast potatoes etc. The turkey-enhanced flavour in it can't be wasted!

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