Posts Tagged ‘confit of chicken’

Chef Justin Faubert’s confit of chicken with Castor River grain spaetzle

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013


Add this recipe to your collection if you’re looking for a new way to prepare leftover turkey or another seasonal bird. Although this calls for chicken, contributing chef Justin Faubert says you can substitute turkey, duck or goose.

 To prepare the recipe, Faubert uses poultry from James Haven Farms, and flour from Castor River Farm for the spaetzle. He suggests serving the finished dish with seasonal sides of roasted brussel sprouts and maple-glazed carrots.

A graduate of Vancouver’s Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts, and holder of the Red Seal Chef designation, Justin Faubert has worked in several well-known Vancouver restaurants, including C Restaurant, Provence Mediterranean Grill and Provence Marinaside. During the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics, he was hired by NBC Universal Sports as part of the culinary team at the Richmond Oval speed skating venue, providing food service to athletes, dignitaries, media and event staff. He recently moved to Ottawa, where he is a chef for Thyme and Again Catering and for his own private chef and consulting company, Landwaterfork Foods. He is also the local auditor for Leaders in Environmentally Accountable Foodservice (LEAF), a national sustainable foodservice standards organization.

 Confit of Chicken

Prep time: about 20 minutes

 4 chicken legs

1 tbsp salt

½ tbsp. sugar

½ tbsp chopped herbs – e.g., parsley, thyme, rosemary

¼ tsp powdered chili

¼ tsp lemon zest

2   cups rendered chicken fat* or olive oil

 *Rendering fat is a great way to use parts of the bird that would otherwise be thrown out. Remove the skin and fatty pieces and cover them with water in a stock pan or dutch oven. Cook over medium heat until the water has evaporated and the fat starts to turn colour. Strain off liquified fat.  Store rendered fat in the fridge and use in other dishes, such as roast potatoes.

 Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl. Set aside.

Rinse chicken legs under cold water and pat dry with a paper towel. Sprinkle legs on both sides with seasoning mixture and place in a single layer in a dish or pan. Refrigerate overnight or up to 24 hrs.

Preheat oven to 300˚F. Rinse seasoning mixture off the chicken with cold water and pat dry. Place chicken in a baking dish in a single layer. Cover completely with rendered fat or olive oil (this may take more or less than the 2 cups depending on the size of the chicken legs and the baking dish). Cook in the oven for about 3 hours or until the meat falls from the bone.

Let meat cool completely in the fat. (It can be kept in the fridge for several weeks, covered in the rendered fat or olive oil.)

To serve, remove the legs and excess fat. Place them leg skin side down in a medium-hot pan and cook 3-4 minutes or until the skin is golden brown. Turn the legs over and continue to cook until warmed through.

The meat can also be removed from the leg, shredded and used in pastas, pot pies and stews.

 Castor River Grain Spaetzle

Serves 3-4 as a side dish

Prep time: about 10 minutes

 1 cup spelt flour

1/3 cup whole wheat flour

2 eggs

2/3 cup milk

1 ½ tsp salt

¼ tsp nutmeg – optional

 In a bowl, combine spelt, wheat flour, salt and nutmeg. Whisk eggs in a separate mixing bowl. Alternately whisk flours and milk into the eggs to avoid lumps. When all ingredients are combined, allow mixture to rest for at least 20 minutes. The finished dough should be smooth and thick, like a thickened pancake batter.

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Using a spaetzle press or colander, press a ladleful of dough through the holes into the boiling water. Once the dough rises to the top, remove it with a slotted spoon and place it in a bowl of cold water. When it has cooled, remove it from the water and dry. Reserve.

To finish the spaetzle, heat a pan with a splash of oil and/or butter over medium-high heat. Add the spaetzle and fry until browned and crispy, stirring occasionally to avoid sticking. Season with salt, pepper and a pinch of fresh herbs.

Tip: This recipe is a great base; feel free to add herbs, mustard, spices and other flavours.

What’s your favourite recipe for leftover poultry or game birds?