Califonia Bountiful
Main Dish

Duck confit salad

Rich duck is paired with fresh, hearty greens to make a salad delicious enough to be the star of any meal!

Executive Chef Adrian Garcia
Common Club Restaurant at Virgin SF Hotel, San Francisco

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Duck leg confit
4 duck legs, skin on
4 cups kosher salt
1 cup sugar
1 tbsp. cracked black pepper
2 tbsp. fresh thyme leaves
Zest of 1 orange
10 cups duck fat or canola oil 

1/4 cup sherry vinegar
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 pinch black pepper
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 cup canola oil 

Pomegranate gastrique
1/2 cup sherry vinegar
1/4 cup saba (see note)
1/4 cup pomegranate molasses
1 tsp. kosher salt

4 cups mixed salad greens
2 tbsp. cleaned pomegranate seeds


For confit: In a bowl, mix together salt, sugar, pepper, thyme and orange zest. On a tray, lay out duck legs, skin side down, and coat with a heavy layer of the salt mixture. Cover in plastic and refrigerate 12 hours or overnight. Next day, remove duck legs from salt, rinse and pat dry. Place in an oven-safe vessel and cover with 6 cups melted duck fat or canola oil. Cover pan in foil and bake in a 250-degree oven until tender and falling off the bone, at least 2 hours. Pull out of the fat carefully and remove the thigh bone, keeping the skin intact. Pat dry and cool. 

For vinaigrette: Combine vinegar, salt, pepper and mustard in a blender. Blend on medium and slowly add oil. Remove and store in a jar or squeeze bottle. Always shake or mix before using.

For gastrique: Combine all ingredients in a pot and reduce by half. Let cool to room temperature.

To serve: Deep-fry duck legs in remaining 4 cups duck fat or canola oil at 350 degrees to caramelize evenly and heat up. While duck legs are frying, toss salad and vinaigrette together, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide among 4 plates. When duck legs are crispy and hot, plate with salad and drizzle gastrique elegantly on plate.

Note: Saba is made from reduced unfermented grape juice. Balsamic vinegar is a good substitution if you reduce it until it's slightly syrupy.

Serves 4

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