Sous Vide Crane Leg Confit

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Using the confit technique is one of the simplest ways to convince the folks you’re feeding that you’re a Michelin Star Chef in disguise, not just someone who made a decent shot with their grandpa’s 12 gauge. Confit, in its simplest form, is salted meat cooked low and slow in its own fat. The low heat and long cooking time of confiting is perfect for breaking down connective tissue and muscle into succulent pull-apart meat — making it an ideal preparation for tough game bird legs. This recipe uses crane legs, but you could easily use goose or turkey here as well. Regardless of what bird you’re using, make sure you pluck the legs so you retain as much skin and fat on the meat as possible. Instead of keeping your oven on for hours on end, this recipe uses a sous vide cooker. With sous vide cooking, you simply place all of the ingredients inside a zipper-lock or vacuum-sealed bag, and the machine circulates water around it at a precise temperature for even, easy cooking. Cooking sous vide with the Anova Precision Cooker takes all the guesswork out and ensures your meal comes out perfectly — no matter your skill level. It’s your secret weapon through its ultra-precise temperature-controlled cooking technology.
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Ingredients for 2

  • 2 crane, goose, or turkey legs

  • Kosher salt

  • Duck fat, olive oil, lard, tallow, or other rendered game bird fat

  • Aromatics, such as garlic, thyme, bay leaf, and/or lemon peel

Directions

  • Step 1

    Weigh the crane legs and multiply that number by .0175 (1.75%) to calculate the weight of salt to use. Season the legs all over with the measured salt and refrigerate for 24 hours.

  • Step 2

    After 24 hours, and without removing any excess salt, place the legs into a vacuum-seal bag with aromatics of your choosing and enough duck fat to cover the meat.

  • Step 3

    Attach an Anova Precision Cooker to a vessel of water and set the temperature to 170°F (77°C).

  • Step 4

    Place the sealed bag into the water bath and cook sous vide for 12 hours.

    • Finishing Steps

    • Step 0

      Once the meat is done cooking, remove it from the bag. At this point the meat should be falling off the bone, leaving you with a few options of how to proceed: you can sear the leg on a hot cast iron for crispy skin and slice, or shred the entirety of it for anything from BBQ sandwiches to carnitas, or just serve a real primal looking drumstick and gnaw that thing right to the bone.

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170 F / 76.7 C Recipe Temp
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