Hartford House

The Home of Good Conversation, Fine Wine and Classic Horses.

Award-winning hotel and restaurant situated at Summerhill Stud on the picturesque KwaZulu-Natal Midlands Meander, South Africa.

Duck Confit Recipe

Duck Confit Photo : Jackie Cameron

Duck Confit
Photo : Jackie Cameron

Duck Confit

Duck thighs can be confit (cooked in their own fat), on simmer, for three hours. Keep in an airtight container with an inch of duck fat to cover all the meat. This process, used in days gone by, preserves the flesh and the result is a deep, dark meat when oven heated to serve. It is succulently juicy with a crispy skin.

Duck Fat


1) When deboning and portioning a duck-remove all excess duck fat from the thighs and breasts together with any extra fat on the carcass

2) Place all of this into a saucepan and cover with cold water

3) Bring to the boil and allow simmering, you may need to top up with water, simmer until the duck fat pieces are very crispy and have released all the liquid fat. Refrigerate for later use

4) If you find you do not have enough duck fat to confit your thighs add equal quantities of salted butter to sunflower oil (cheats duck fat!)

Duck Confit


Deboned Duck Thighs

Fine Salt

Duck Fat

Maldon Salt


1) Lightly salt the duck thighs and leave overnight in a covered oven tray

2) Rinse the salt off in the morning and pat dry

3) Place the thighs into a heavy based pot and cover with duck fat

4) Bring to the boil and allow simmering for three hours. Never allow the duck fat to boil, if this is the case, switch the pot off and allow slight cooling and then place back on the heat

5) When cooked and beautifully tender, cover the pot with tin foil and leave off the heat, out of the fridge overnight

6) On service heat an oven to 260°C. Trim and neaten up the duck thighs, place onto a tray, top with a sprinkle of Maldon salt or normal salt and add water to the base of the pan.  Place into the oven and heat up until the duck thigh is crispy.  Can take about 20 minutes

Please post your comments and any food-related questions below.

I look forward to hearing from you.

jackie cameron

Jackie Cameron
Head Chef
Hartford House
+27 33 263 2713