Recently, I did a “Grub Street” interview for NY Magazine http://newyork.grubstreet.com/2012/09/david-alan-grier-grub-street-diet.html …Here’s what really happened. That day I talked about strolling around Soho, eating and gallery trawling I forgot to mention that I was hawling around a 9 pound frozen goose! I’d purchased the said goose from Dean & Deluca earlier that morning and FYI, I paid a grip for it! I had been planning to make some goose rillette. I’d already ordered fresh duck legs from Hudson Valley Foie Gras. I hadn’t made duck confit in a while so it being the end of summer and as I calculated it, If I made the confit at the end of September by Thanksgiving the confit and rillette should be perfectly aged and ready to devour! The plan was to make everything in New York and then overnight it to myself in LA, thus making it the most expensive confit and rillette on the planet! Why would I do such a thing you may ask? Answer: Why do you breathe? Because I had to! First, I made the confit.
I seasoned the duck legs with sea salt, fresh garlic, bay leaves, cracked black pepper, rosemary, and five spice powder. I put a lid on my container and let them marinade overnight.
The next day I took them out of the fridge and rinsed off the duck legs saving the bay leaves and crushed garlic…You must rinse the legs or they will be too salty after cooking. I learned this the hard way. I didn’t have enough duck fat to cook all of my legs so I called around the city and found some unrenedered duck fat at Giovanni Esposito & Sons on 9th Avenue. I love this place. A real old style NY butcher. One the few left in NYC. I explained my situation and it was decided that I needed 9 pounds of unrendered frozen duck fat to finish my 6 duck legs for the confit. I’ve never rendered duck fat, but I was up for the challenge.
I let the duck fat thaw in the fridge, and then cut it up into cubes and rendered it on my stove top.
This didn’t take nearly as long as rendering lard does…And look what I got.
This is my beautiful, strained, golden, duck fat ready to use! I put the duck legs, the reserved bay leaves, garlic and fat into my cast iron dutch oven and put them into a preheated oven at 200 degrees.
I let them slow cook until the legs were tender, yet not falling apart. You have to judge this yourself. This time it took about 4 hours to get them perfect. I then put them into plastic Tupperware containers as I thought this would be better to ship them in.
Done n done! Next was the goose rillette. so, here is my beautiful goose, fully defrosted and ready to go.
I cut the goose up and seasoned it with garlic, cracked pepper, bay leaves, and rosemary.
I reserved the goose legs and wings for some goose confit…I mean why not have a party. I slow everthing in duck fat until the goose meat was falling off the bone.
I pulled everything off the bone. Removed all of the sinew and things. I then roughly chopped the meat and then shredded it by hand. DO NOT, I repeat DO NOT put the meat into a food processor as this will make not rillette but rather a goose mouse or pudding…Eiewwwwwwww. I took a wooden spoon and tablespoon by tablespoon incorporated the strained goose fat into the meat until I got a nice creamy texture. All along I seasoned the meat until it tasted just right. You need to keep in mind that once chilled and aged the seasoning will change so it’s good to season on the heavy side.
I put about an inch of goose fat on top of my rillette. Let that chill and put about a quarter inch of home made lard on top of that to further seal it and there it is! I put everything into a box and sent it to myself. My box was waiting at my front door when I arrived back in LA. Thanksgiving is going to be gooooooooood this year!