Monday, November 06, 2006

Things to do with duck fat, part two in a series

The duck fat roasted pumpkin seeds were a success, but I still had most of a container of duck fat sitting in my fridge. When I needed a quick and easy dinner on Friday, I decided to make breakfast for dinner. Scrambled eggs, sauteed mushrooms, some home-cured maple bacon from my friend in Chicago, and potatoes pan fried in duck fat.

Duck Fat Potatoes
1 lb potatoes
3 tbsp duck fat
salt and pepper to taste

Cut the potatoes into smallish pieces - maybe 3/4 inch? You can peel them if you like - I was using some new red potatoes, so I just left the skins on. Melt the duck fat in a pan, add the potatoes, and season with salt and pepper. Put a loosely fitting lid on the pan and let cook 10 minutes over medium to medium-high heat before stirring - you want the potatoes to get nice and crusty. Stir, and continue to cook loosely covered for about 15-20 minutes, stirring very occasionally, until the potatoes are browned and crispy on the outside and cooked through. Serve hot.
There are a couple things about duck fat that make it superior to oil or other fats for this application. One is flavor - the duck fat has a lot of flavor compared to something like canola oil, and a more savory flavor profile than olive oil. So it imparts a lot of flavor to the potatoes. The day I cooked these, I was suffering from a recurring sodium sensitivity that I have. Salt-less potatoes are usually less interesting than library paste, but these were actually pretty good (although the ones my husband sprinkled salt on were even better).

The second thing is crispiness. I'm not sure the mechanism behind it (smoke point? saturated vs. non-saturated?) but I found that - as compared to oil fried potatoes - these potatoes got crispier and browner without getting greasy.

I still have about half the container in the fridge, so stay tuned for part three.


Mary said...

Where in Ann Arbor can you buy rendered duck fat?

Tammy Coxen said...

Mary, you can buy the d'Artagnan brand at both Zingerman's Deli and Morgan and York.

Hope that helps!

Mary said...

Thanks! The shipping costs for ordering it online are twice the cost of the product, so this is a huge help.

Anonymous said...

You can order from "More Than Gourmet" and while you're at it, get the turkey stock stuff. It saves all kinds of angst at Thanksgiving. I use the Demi-Glace Gold a lot too. I buy the 16 oz and just freeze it in little bits so I don't have to use it all in 6 months, though I have come close.

Benjamin said...

i make my own rendered duck fat by following alton brown's orange duck recipe (good eats episode what's up duck) and boiling down the fat from the steamed duck - take the fat out of the pot and pour it through cheese cloth, then store in a plastic cup overnight in the fridge. you end up with a yellow brick of fat floating on some nasty water. Store the fat in the freezer. I get about a cup out of a duck. Thanks for this potato recipe.