Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Confit jelly


Recommended Posts

Hi all,

Inspired by the chapter about confits in Ruhlman & Polcyn's "Charcuterie", I've prepared confits of both duck legs, lamb shoulder and pork belly a couple of times at home. Results have been great, and the confits have never had the chance to hang around in the fridge for very long before it's all eaten up.

I have a question regarding the confit jelly, the dark juices that collect on the bottom of the pan after cooking. Ruhlman & Polcyn, and also Robuchon in "The Complete Robuchon", write that care should be taken not get any of these juices into your storage jar if you want to store the confit for any length of time. Ruhlman & Polcyn write that the jelly can go sour over time.

I've consulted some other cookbooks, including Fearnley-Whittingstall's "River Cottage Meat Book" and Henderson's "Nose to tail eating", and they don't make any particular mention of the jelly and the need for removing it.

The jelly is amazing in sauces and stocks, but how important is it really to get it out of the confit storage container? And, what's the easiest way of separating the jelly from the duck fat before pouring the fat over the cooked meat?

I made some rillons this weekend, and I would like to have them around for a couple of weeks at least, to see if I can pick up "aging"/ripening qualities in the confit. I ladled fat over the cooked belly, trying not to get any of the jelly juices into the storage container, but I'm pretty sure some jelly snook it's way in there.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for your reply, Chef Hermes!

Is it essential that the container with meat is completely jelly-free? I guess I won't be keeping the belly pieces for longer than about a month in the fridge.

Would it be an idea to remove the meat to another container and then top with clean fat, or would that make "matters worse" by lifting them out of the fat?

Thanks again!

Edited by hansjoakim (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Within a month, especially at refrigerator temperatures, you should have no problems. When removing pieces from the confit, instead of "top with clean fat", just heat the entire container above 140 F and make sure there is still a fat layer covering the top completely.

The whole idea behind burying your meat in fat is that very few bacteria (other than than C. bolulinum) live on food in this oxygen-starved conditions (under fat). Jelly ups the percent liquid, but if it is truly sealed under a layer of fat (without any air bubbles allowing oxygen to pass through) it is protected by confit. And keep in mind confit was meant to preserve at room temperature for months--fridge temperature for weeks is barely a preservation challenge for cooked meat. Storage temperatures below 40 F (eg refrigerator) significantly inhibit botulism growth.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi ...tm...,

Thanks, that makes a lot of sense.

It's just that as I've been reading up on the technique, the wildly differing storing times (not to mention the different cooking times; Robuchon cooks his duck legs under 2 hours, while Ruhlman wants them simmered for 6 hours) have confused me. Regarding storage capabilities, some say a week (I believe that's the case with Keller in Ad-hoc at home), some say up to a year, some stress the importance of carefully removing the jelly while others again don't even mention the jelly in the first place.

I guess common sense never goes out of style, and thanks for reminding me!

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Similar Content

    • By daniel123456789876543
      I have been making pancetta for the first time. I have experience with the curing process doing things like bacon and cold smoked salmon in the past but this is the first time I have ever hanged anything.
      After a week of curing it has had 11 days  hanging so far (I was planning on taking it to 28 days hanging) Although I foolishly forgot to weigh it. 
      It smells really good like some awesome salami and the outer rim of the pancetta looks lovely and rich and dark.
      It was a recipe by Kuhlman in one of their charcuterie books.
      But when I inspected it today it had the mould growing on it as in the pics below. I have since scrubbed the mould off with white wine vinegar and returned it to the cellar. Is it wise to continue?

    • By liuzhou
      Following my posting a supermarket bought roast rabbit in the Dinner topic, @Anna N expressed her surprise at my local supermarkets selling such things just like in the west supermarkets sell rotisserie chickens. I promised to photograph the pre-cooked food round these parts.

      I can't identify them all, so have fun guessing!


      Chicken x 2






      Chicken feet

      Duck Feet

      Pig's Ear


      Pork Intestine Rolls


      Stewed River Snails

      Stewed Duck Feet (often served with the snails above)




      Beijing  Duck gets its own counter.
      More pre-cooked food to come. Apologies for some bady lit images - I guess the designers didn't figure on nosy foreigners inspecting the goods and disseminating pictures worldwide.
    • By DanM
      Normally, the local market has bresaola in tissue paper thin slices. Today they also had packages in small dice, probably the leftover ends, bits and pieces. Any thoughts on how to enjoy them, besides nibbling on it? 
      Thank you!
    • By kayb
      Linguine with Squash, Goat Cheese and Bacon
      Serves 4 as Main Dishor 6 as Side.
      I stumbled on this while looking for recipes with goat cheese. It's from Real Simple (and it is!). I couldn't imagine the combination of flavors, but it was wonderful.

      6 slices bacon
      1 2- to 2 ½-pound butternut squash—peeled, seeded, and diced (4 to 5 cups)
      2 cloves garlic, minced
      1-1/2 c chicken broth
      1 tsp kosher salt
      4 oz soft goat cheese, crumbled
      1 lb linguine, cooked
      1 T olive oil
      2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

      Cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp, about 5 minutes. Drain on a paper towel, then crumble or break into pieces; set aside. Drain all but about 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat from the skillet. Add the squash and garlic to the skillet and sauté over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the broth and salt. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the squash is cooked through and softened, 20 to 25 minutes. Add half the goat cheese and stir well to combine. Place the cooked linguine in a large bowl. Stir the sauce into the linguine and toss well to coat. Drizzle with the olive oil and add the reserved bacon, the remaining goat cheese, and the pepper. Serve immediately.
      Keywords: Main Dish, Easy, Vegetables, Dinner
      ( RG2158 )
    • By phatj
      Duck Leg Confit Potstickers
      Serves 4 as Appetizer.
      These are seriously decadent potstickers.
      I devised this recipe as part of a Duck Three Ways dinner wherein over the course of three days I dismantled a whole duck using various parts for various things, including rendering fat, making stock and confiting the legs. If you're super-ambitious and do it my way, you'll have duck stock and duck fat on hand as this recipe calls for; otherwise, substitute chicken stock and peanut oil or whatever you have on hand.

      2 confited duck legs, bones discarded and meat shredded
      2 c sliced shiitake caps
      1/2 c sliced scallions
      splash fish sauce
      1 tsp grated fresh ginger
      1 tsp grated fresh garlic
      pinch Five Spice powder
      pot sticker wrappers
      3 c duck stock
      3 T duck fat

      1. Saute shiitakes in duck fat over high heat until most liquid has evaporated and they are beginning to brown.
      Meanwhile, reduce about 1 C duck stock in a small saucepan over medium heat until it's almost syrupy in consistency and tastes sweet.
      Also, warm a couple of cups of unreduced duck stock over low heat in another saucepan.
      2. Combine mushrooms, duck meat, scallions, fish sauce, ginger, garlic and Five Spice powder in a bowl.
      3. Place a teaspoon or so of the duck mixture in the center of a potsticker wrapper; wet half of the edge with water and seal, pinching and pleating one side.
      If you prepare more potstickers than you're going to want to eat, they can be frozen on cookie sheets then put into freezer bags for later.
      4. When all potstickers are sealed, heat a flat-bottomed pan over medium-high heat, melt enough duck fat to thinly cover the bottom, then add the potstickers.
      5. Cook undisturbed until the bottoms are browned, 3-5 minutes, then enough unreduced duck stock to cover the bottom of the pan about 1/2 inch deep and cover the pan.
      6. Cook until most liquid is absorbed, then uncover and cook until remaining liquid evaporates.
      While potstickers are cooking, make a dipping sauce by combining the reduced duck stock 1:1 with soy sauce, then adding a little rice vinegar, brown sugar (if the duck stock isn't sweet enough), and sesame oil.
      Serve potstickers immediately when done.
      Keywords: Hors d'oeuvre, Appetizer, Intermediate, Duck, Dinner, Chinese
      ( RG2052 )
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...