Growing Popularity of Duck Leg: Where to Find It and How to Prepare It
Whether someone is looking to expand their palate or they are looking for a healthier meat option, duck is a great option to choose. Duck is not only extremely flavorful, but the health benefits of eating duck will keep people coming back for more. Even though the misconception that duck is difficult to prepare can make cooking duck seem intimidating, a great place to start is duck legs. Just as easy to prepare as other forms of poultry, duck legs give consumers the opportunity to see how easy it is to have the best of both worlds– healthy and delicious.
You may enjoy chicken legs but are looking for an option that tastes good and is healthy. Duck legs are a great option you should try. They can easily fit into a healthy diet while offering a rich flavor and tender texture that your family will love.
Despite what you may have been led to believe, duck meat is packed with health benefits that make it a great alternative to chicken or turkey legs.
Duck legs can have less fat.
Pekin skinless duck legs have less fat than many other proteins. By properly cooking duck, you can eliminate 70% of the fat.
Duck legs are packed with iron and other essential nutrients.
Duck legs have more iron per serving than chicken, turkey and even some cuts of beef. Plus, they are an excellent source of essential nutrients such as niacin, selenium, vitamins A, E, K, and B1 and B2.
Duck meat is often lower in calories than a variety of other proteins, including chicken, turkey, beef and pork.
Duck legs have “better for you” fat.
Duck fat is higher in monounsaturated fats than saturated fats. This means it is more similar to olive oil than other animal fats. Chefs love using duck fat in place of some vegetable oils because of its healthfulness, rich flavor and versatile cooking qualities.
Duck legs are a great option to use in recipes people have already grown to love. With the new flavor of duck in these popular dishes, the versatility in what someone can prepare is endless.
Tacos are a crowd favorite and these duck tacos are perfect for someone looking to try something different with a classic dish.
If someone is looking for a healthier option for a lasagna dish, this recipe is a great choice not only for the health benefits but the enhanced flavor the duck will provide.
Pulled duck and Gouda cheese topped with a tangy arugula mix and apple chips on a toasted ciabatta roll is perfect for someone looking to try duck without other flavors overwhelming the taste of the meat.
One of the many benefits of duck legs is they have broad appeal! Anyone who wants to prepare a dish centered around duck legs is able to do so because they are multifaceted. Duck can be used in dishes from all over the world such as Duck Burgers that are a take on a traditional American dish and Chimichurri Duck Legs, which takes influence from recipes from South America.
With all the health benefits and general appeal of duck legs as an alternative for other poultry, anyone and everyone is able to use duck legs for any occasion.
Duck legs are the easiest part of a duck to prepare. Season the legs to your preferred taste and put them in the oven until the internal temperature reaches 180 degrees. From there, incorporate the tender legs into the desired recipe for a delicious meal that everyone will love.
Like most other forms of poultry, there are many different ways to prepare duck legs. Duck legs can be grilled, braised, or smoked for a variety of eating experiences. To cook duck legs in the traditional method found in most recipes, follow these simple steps:
If duck legs are still frozen, place them in the refrigerator the night before so they are ready to use the next day.
Use salt, black pepper and garlic powder to season the legs before placing them in the oven. Season them to the preferred taste.
Place the seasoned duck legs into the oven. The oven should be preheated to 350 degrees F. Once placed in the oven, let them cook for about 1 ½ hours. Monitor the legs' internal temperature, which should reach 180 degrees F when they are done.
Reserve the Fat
Be sure to save the fat that melts off during the cooking process. Allow the liquid fat to cool slightly, then strain into a clean, sealable container. If covered, you can store the duck fat in the refrigerator for up to six months or in the freezer for a year.
Ready to Use
Once the duck legs are finished cooking, they are ready to be used in the recipe of your choice.
There are many recipes that call for a regularly cooked duck leg, but do not feel limited to oven baked duck legs.
Duck Confit is the time-honored French tradition of cooking meat slowly in its own fat until very tender. The duck legs are baked low and slow for a finished product that will nearly melt in your mouth.
Braised duck legs are perfect for a fall dish. This way of cooking the duck legs infuses an assortment of flavors into the meat like in the dish, Cider Braised Duck Salad with Walnut Vinaigrette.
Fried food has always been in popular demand and duck legs are no exception. Although not coated with traditional breading, Waffle Fried Duck Drumsticks are a great way to try out a different way to cook duck meat.
One of the most popular ways to prepare a meat-focused dish during the summer is on the grill. Our BBQ Duck Legs makes for a meal you will not soon forget.
A simple yet savory option for duck leg preparation is the classic Smoked Duck Legs. Covered in a delicious dry rub and smoked to perfection, duck legs have never tasted better.
From world famous recipes to fan favorites, there is a wide selection of dishes to choose from when deciding how to try duck legs. Combining tender meat and crispy skin, you will never want to stop making recipes with them.
Five-Spice Duck Legs with Warm Pickled Fennel, Cherries and Persimmons, Persimmon Gel and Chrysanthemum Jus
An intricate dish with five-spice duck legs, fennel, cherries, persimmons and chrysanthemums.
Rich with duck, woodsy with mushrooms and fragrant with spices, this delicious braise sings with the flavors of fall.
Braised in wine, this dish is a classic French recipe served with roasted garlic mashed potatoes or soft polenta.
A hearty blend of duck confit, duck bacon, pancetta and sausage over flageolet beans with onion and garlic, this duck classic is a favorite made for easy preparation at home.
One of the best breakfast dishes improved with duck. It is a perfect morning meal for everyone to enjoy.
A pasta dish enhanced by the flavor of smoked duck, this recipe is a great way to explore a new flavor with a bit of familiarity.
Duck legs coated with a layer of breadcrumbs are served with honey mustard pretzel spaetzle and creamed Brussels sprouts and beurre noisette.
This quick and easy Duck Poutine recipe is packed with savory, tangy flavor. It’s traditional Canadian poutine with a duck upgrade.
The most important thing to look for when purchasing duck is finding the type of duck that has the taste preference preferred for your recipe of choice. Pekin duck is the most common and preferred duck as its taste is mild in flavor and lean with a tender texture that works best for a large array of recipes. You can find recipes right here on our website to help create a menu for the best tasting duck dishes
Other factors that go into choosing the best quality meat is seeing how the ducks are raised. Through Maple Leaf Farms' farm to fork process consumers are able to know where they are getting their duck from. In accordance with the Trident Stewardship Program, our operations are third-party audited by a Professional Animal Auditor Certification Organization (PAACO) professional.
Interested in buying duck legs for your next dining adventure? You can find a retail store near you that carries duck legs by visiting Maple Leaf Farms product locator. Or you can have duck legs delivered to your door by ordering online directly from Maple Leaf Farms.
Culinary professionals looking to add duck legs to their line up can source duck nationwide from a broad network of food distributors. To find out more, contact your Maple Leaf Farms sales rep here to find out what distributors carry our products near you.