• 1 tsp cumin seeds, dry roasted
  • 1 tbsp coriander seeds, dry roasted
  • 100g rock salt
  • a small bunch thyme
  • 3 juniper berries, crushed (look in the spice section)
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 6 duck legs
  • about 700g goose fat or duck fat, (look for it in tins or jars)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns

Braised lentils

  • olive oil
  • 2 red onions, finely chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • a handful of leaves thyme
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 300g Puy lentils
  • 5 tomatoes, quartered
  • a handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped


  • STEP 1

    Start the day before. Crush the spices lightly and mix with the salt, thyme, juniper berries and garlic. Rub the mixture over the duck legs and leave for 24 hours, turning twice.

  • STEP 2

    Heat the oven to 160C/fan 140C/gas 3. Wipe the duck well with kitchen paper (don’t wash) and pat dry. Cover with goose fat, Add the bay and peppercorns and cook for about 3 hours, or until the meat is almost falling away from the bone. Leave to cool in the fat and chill.

  • STEP 3

    To make the lentils, heat a slug of oil in a heavy pan and gently sweat the veg, garlic and thyme until just soft. Add the red wine vinegar and lentils. Cover with water then bring to a gentle simmer. Add the tomatoes and simmer very gently until tender with a little bite. Stir the parsley through.

  • STEP 4

    When you want to serve the duck, heat the oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Take the legs out of the fat, scraping most of it away. Put them skin-side up on a roasting tray, then cook for 30-40 minutes until crisp and golden. Serve the duck legs with the lentils.


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