Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Cassoulet update

So, a couple busy pre-Thanksgiving days of work and some dubious time-management skills later, I already find myself somewhat behind.

Late last night I did manage to soak the beans for the cassoulet. I'm always amazed at how soaking the little buggers makes them so much bigger. They don't look a lot bigger but I promise this bowl was only half full last night.

Late last night I did manage to bake my apple pie. I had put the dough
for the crust together in the morning so it was ready to roll out. Eight apples and some chopped crystallized ginger are in there too. Not necessarily a traditional desert for cassoulet but what the hell. I like a good pie.

My duck fat arrived yesterday on schedule. It was kind of cool (no pun intended) packed in a whole insulated box with a bunch of freezer packs (bonus. I get a half dozen freezer packs for my trouble).

This morning was the confit. I'd never given much thought to the word 'confit' so I looked it up. Turns out that confit was originally a method for preserving food. Makes sense I guess. The trick to the whole preservation thing... turns out that bacteria don't grow in fat. So if you don't have refigeration and want to keep something from going bad, cook it entirely in some kind of fat so it's totally covered, let it cool and put it in a cool corner somewhere. Then you can have your confit meat at your leisure. Maybe this will all come in handy someday.

At any rate, here's the duck in the oven:

And here it is all done...