Let’s face it. If you want to make anything sound that bit special, say it in French. A shrimp might be worth scoffing down. But a langoustine is something that has to be eaten with the reverence its embellished title deserves. Pommes Anna evokes crisp cotton tablecloths, silverware, crystal glasses and fine wines. With due deference to my eldest sister, “Anna’s potatoes” really doesn’t do much for the imagination. So when I cogitated preparing some sweetened duck legs in a plastic bag, it really had to be Duck a l’Orange Sous Vide. It may seem like déjà vu as I have done Duck a l’Orange here before.
I was in a bit of a quandary over the number of oranges to show in the ingredients shot. If they are really juicy, two or three would do. However, I had to squeeze eight to get just enough juice.
- 4 duck legs
- 3 to 8 oranges
- Sugar to sweeten the sauce
- Salt and pepper
The preparation of this dish is simplicity itself. First thing to do is to cut around the end of the bone on the legs. This allows them to separate while cooking. The end result looks good and also is more easy to cut off the bone. The duck legs need to be seasoned, then they are placed in a vacuum bag with a couple of slices of orange zest and a sprig of thyme.
Once sealed, they get cooked for 24 hours at 64.5°C. This yields up a pretty unappealing looking result. However, one can correct this by placing the legs in a very hot oven for ten minutes or so.
It would be a faux pas to not have prepared a simple orange sauce. Juice between six and eight oranges. Add some sugar to sweeten the mixture. You could add some star anise or ginger too, if you are feeling risqué (I did).
Reduce this to a nice consistency. Serve it over the duck legs. You will have a big hit on your hands. Your guests will call out Bravo, Bravo! Now all you need to do is decide on what you are going to do for an encore.