Slow-cooked duck egg with duck confit, asparagus and cobnuts

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Comforting though duck confit and poached eggs sounds don’t be fooled – this is a complex and refined recipe from Adam Simmonds that definitely has the wow factor. Smoked butter is available online.




For the confit duck leg

For the confited green asparagus

For the duck consommé

  • 750g of duck bones
  • 25g of celery, large dice
  • 50g of onion, large dice
  • 25g of carrots, large dice
  • 9g of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 bay leaf
  • 0.5g of thyme
  • 150ml of water
  • 375ml of white chicken stock
  • 250ml of white wine, reduced by ½

For the clarification

For the duck egg

For the green asparagus raw slices


  • Food processor or blender
  • Muslin cloth
  • Thermometer
  • Water bath


For the confit duck leg, mix the peppercorns, bay leaf, fresh thyme, salt and garlic, sprinkle over the duck leg to coat thoroughly. Cover and leave refridgerated to cure for 12 hours. Wash off, place into a deep tray
Warm the duck fat to 100°C and pour over the duck legs. Place into a pre-heated oven at 105°C/gas mark 1/4. Cook for about 3 – 4 hours. When cooked remove and allow to cool
While still slightly warm remove from the fat, strip the meat off the bone discarding any skin. Use your fingers to shred the meat into thin strips and set aside
For the confit green asparagus, cut off the woody stem and peel off the outer layer of green 2cm below the top. Cut at a diagonal and set aside
Use a thermometer to warm the butter to 75˚C. Place in the asparagus tops and cook until tender, around 6-8 minutes. Remove from the butter, season with salt and cool on a tray over ice. Repeat the process for the bases and set the butter aside
For the duck consommé, use a cleaver or the thickest part of a large knife to chop the duck bones into small pieces. Roast the bones in the oven set to 180°C/gas mark 4 until golden
In a separate tin, roast the vegetables in the same oven until golden. Once cooked, combine the bones with the vegetables and add the 9g of garlic, pinch of thyme and bay leaf. Continue to roast for 2 additional minutes
Meanwhile, add the water, chicken stock and wine to a pan and bring to the boil. Drain any excess fat that comes from the bones and add along with the vegetables to the stock pot and simmer for 20 minutes. Drain, pass through muslin and allow to set in the fridge. Once cool, remove the fat from the top when set
  • 150ml of water
  • 375ml of white chicken stock
  • 250ml of white wine, reduced by ½
For the clarification, remove the fat and sinew from the duck breast. Roughly chop and place into a food processor. Blend with the carrot to form a minced paste, remove and place into a bowl
Whisk the egg white very lightly to break up slightly. Place the cold duck stock into a pan and warm on the stove. Once luke-warm, whisk the egg whites into the meat until thoroughly combined and whisk the entire mixture to disperse into the stock
Bring to a gentle simmer, carefully scraping the bottom of the pot every so often to ensure it does not catch on the bottom. Simmer for 8–10 minutes to cook and set the proteins in the duck and egg white mix. This will float to the top pulling with it any impurities to form a raft
Season the raft with a little salt, remove the pot from the heat and gently lift off the raft with a large spoon and discard. Pass the mixture through a fine strainer lined with muslin and the result should be a strong, duck-flavoured clear liquid or consommé
For the duck egg. Preheat the water bath to 60°C. Place in the duck eggs for 1 hour, then reduce the temperature and hold them at 50°C
For the green asparagus raw slices, slice the asparagus tops on a mandolin about 2mm thick lengthways. Lay onto a tray and lightly sprinkle with salt, leave for 2 minutes, then toss lightly and set aside while you assemble the dish
Divide the shredded duck leg into the bottom of each bowl. Reheat the smoked butter to warm the spears and basesof the asparagus. Once hot, drain and arrange the confit asparagus on and around the duck leg. Sprinkle some chopped cobnuts over the top, followed by the sliced raw asparagus
Once ready, crack the eggs into the bowl on top of the duck meat and season with Fleur de Sel and cracked black pepper. Add a few more sliced cobnuts over the top and pour in the hot consommé to finish. Serve immediately

Beneath the surface of Adam Simmond’s dishes is highly original, thoughtful cooking.

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