Duck Confit with Braised Red Cabbage

10 May, 2020
Duck Confit

I made this duck confit for my mom once and she was very satisfied with it and asked me to share the recipe with her. In Hungary she has a great group of friends and they always celebrate birthdays and name-days together. When she was celebrating and hosting her birthday she made this recipe for them. My recipe calls for cassava, but this is very expensive in Hungary and nearly impossible to find so, she substituted it with potatoes. You can make it with potato of course if you eat it.

Confit is a traditional French cooking method in which, salted duck legs are cooked in fat for a long time at a low temperature, which results in extremely tender meat that falls easily off the bone. You can find three variations in the instructions on how to slowly cook your cured duck legs.

After confit you will have a lot of duck fat over, but do not pour it out, please! Duck fat has long been a staple in the professional kitchen. With its subtle flavor and high smoke point, it’s perfect for high-heat cooking. Duck fat makes everything taste better; poultry, potatoes, meat and vegetables too. Use it for roasted potatoes, hash browns, mashed potatoes. Oven-roasted and sautéed vegetables earn gourmet cred when tossed in duck fat before cooking. Duck fat adds extra fabulous taste to fried chicken, French fries.

Before the refrigerator was invented, the fried meat was covered with fat and placed in the cold pantry, so they were preserved. If you have leftover duck legs, you can store them very simply by placing it in a bowl, covering it with the fat and keeping it in the fridge. As long as it stays covered with fat it will last for weeks.

Duck Confit with Braised Red Cabbage

Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time4 hrs
Total Time5 hrs
Servings: 4
Author: Andrea


Duck Confit

  • 4 duck legs 340 gram each
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp thyme dried ground
  • ½ tsp rosemary dried ground
  • 800 ml duck fat melted


  • 900 gram red cabbage
  • 1 medium onion
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 big apple
  • 400 ml chicken or veggie stock hot
  • 400 ml red wine I prefer full-bodied red wine like merlot
  • 2 bay leave
  • 50 ml lemon juice freshly squeezed
  • 2 tbsp agave syrup
  • 1 tsp cumin ground
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp tapioca flour


  • 1 kg cassava peeled
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 liter water
  • 1 tbsp duck fat


Duck Confit

  • Mix together the dried thyme, dried rosemary, salt and olive oil and rub into the duck legs. Cover and leave to rest at least 1 hour or at night in the fridge.
  • Place the duck legs with sprigs of thyme and rosemary in a dish deep enough to contain the meat and cover with the melted fat.
  • Choose one of these variations below how you will cook your cured duck legs slowly:
    a.     Cook them in preheated (120 °C) oven in a covered oven proof dish for 3 hours.
    b.     Cook them on stove on low heat, in a covered deep pan for 2 hours. Never let it boil, just very gently simmer!
    c.     Cook them in Instant Pot on slow cooker function (normal adjustment) for 4 hours.
  • While legs cook slowly, you can make the cabbage and cassava. Check instructions below in other sections.
  • When legs are soft, remove them from the fat and place them skin side up into the oven proof serving dish.
  • Use full grill function on 260°C for 3-4 minutes until the legs’ skin is gold and crispy.

Cabbage Braised in Red Wine

  • Remove the slightly beautiful leaves of the cabbage and cut quarter then slice thinly.
    red cabbage
  • Chop onion finely.
  • Wash the apple, remove the seeds and cut small pieces, not necessary to peel it.
  • Heat oil in a deep pan over medium heat, and sauté the onion for 2 minutes, until translucent.
  • Add thinly sliced cabbage, apple and hot chicken (or veggie) stock and stir together.
  • Cook it on medium high heat for 2-3 minutes, until bubbling then add the red wine to it.
  • Add bay leaves, salt, cumin, lemon juice and agave syrup to cabbage, cover it and cook on medium heat for 45 minutes.(Stir it from time to time while cooking and check whether it’s soft enough. If the juice evaporated, add more red wine.)
  • When the cabbage is soft enough but still a bit crunchy, take off the lid.
  • Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and more agave syrup if it’s necessary.
  • Take off bay leaves before serving.


  • Cut cassava to 4 cm chunks. Peel and cut the chunks in half lengthwise and remove the hard spine from each piece.
  • Cover with 2 liters water, add 1 tsp salt into it and cook on medium high heat for 30 minutes from boiling.
  • Pour off the water, place cooked cassava to serving plate and drizzle with a bit of duck fat.
  • Serve confit duck legs with braised cabbage, cooked cassava and sprinkle with a bit of parsley (optional).