Warm Duck and Grilled Apple Salad

January  8, 2011
2 Ratings
  • Serves 2
Author Notes

Duck and apples are besties, and when they invite along some of their other pals it turns into a pretty great party. - Ginger's Kitchen —Ginger's Kitchen

Test Kitchen Notes

Slow cooking is the way to go for tender duck legs. And apples, cider, and Calvados transport us right into traditional Normandy. But this recipe goes beyond France—the mustard greens, pistachios, and drizzle of balsamic vinegar make this a dish of our own time and place. It was these additions that made for a lovely light supper, served with a Pinot noir and capped off with a snifter of Calvados. If you’re thinking that it’s too hard to find mustard greens, it’s too long to cook for a salad, or Calvados is too expensive—stop those thoughts right now! We licked the platter clean. —Greenstuff

What You'll Need
  • 1 duck leg
  • 2 granny smith apples
  • 1/2 sweet onion
  • 1/4 cup calvados
  • 1/4 cup apple cider
  • 4 sage leaves
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup pistachios
  • 2 cups mustard greens (try to get smaller younger ones - the 2 cup is after you have washed them and cut them into ribbons - sans stems)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • reduced balsamic vinegar to drizzle.
  1. Heat the oven to 250. Heat the olive oil in a skillet, and generously salt and pepper the duck leg. Brown the leg on both sides and then remove it to a baking dish. Cut the onion into wedges, and half of one of the apples. Add those to the baking dish. Pour the duck fat from the pan over everything then add the cider and calvados. Lay the sage leaves on top and cover it all tightly with foil, and into the oven.
  2. You have probably completely destroyed your stove with fat splatters, you have some time if you'd like to clean up a bit. The duck needs to be in the oven for about 3 hours. You can also toast your pistachios in a dry pan and set them aside while you wait. Also wash your your mustard greens and chop them into wide ribbons.
  3. When the duck is completely fall apart tender - you can tell when you peek, give it a little poke with a fork - remove it from the oven.
  4. Heat the butter in a griddle pan. Cut the other apple into 8 wedges, remove the seeds, then griddle them on both sides until the are just brown but not mushy - you want to keep some texture.
  5. Assembly: Lay the greens on a platter. Take the skin off the duck and then use fork to pull the meat away from the bone - avoid the tricky little bones that want to go along. Arrange the duck and apples on top of the greens. Add the onions from the duck pan, then drizzle with a couple of tablespoons of pan drippings and balsamic vinegar and sprinkle the pistachios on top.
  6. We found that red wine and/or calvados are nice with this.
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  • Waverly
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  • Sagegreen

9 Reviews

Waverly January 21, 2011
Great combination of ingredients....very creative. I bet it was fabulous. I am interested in your use of raw mustard greens. I've never tried them. I suppose "young" greens will be tender, but please tell me, do they wilt a bit with the warm duck and tenderize more in the vinaigrette?
aargersi February 1, 2011
Hi Waverly I just saw this - yes when you put the warm duck and onions and apples and that drizzle of drippings it does wilt/warm them just a bit, which is great with the young mustard greens ... we removed the thickest part of the stems, too (should have mentioned that)
gingerroot January 17, 2011
I bet this is amazing. I'm saving this and can't wait to try it!
Sagegreen January 17, 2011
Aargersi conceived this one. It was really great!
Helenthenanny January 13, 2011
that was the best duck i've ever tasted, hands down!
hardlikearmour January 10, 2011
If you win, how are you going to divvy the prize?
aargersi January 10, 2011
I think we will hand it over to the pregnant lady since she is busy making the newest Food52-er!!!!
Helenthenanny January 13, 2011
haha, brilliant!
Sagegreen January 9, 2011
It sure was a pretty great party! This was super delish.