Roast duck leg on a rich stock reduction with steamed asparagus and oven-roasted potatoes (roasted in duck fat, of course). Steamed asparagus is also brilliant with pork au vin (made like coq au vin but using pork shoulder, red wine and two kinds of mushrooms).
This is from our ever-dwindling stash. We probably kept this bottle of Pinot Noir too long. But amazingly, there was still some fruit left. Doesn't it collect a LOT of dust over the years?!
closer view of label
Bottle cleaned up
There is so much sediment in the wine that it must be decanted. The orange colour of the wine clearly shows its age.
In spite of its age, the wine stood up to this fabulous dinner.
Last year's roasted duck legs were so wonderful that we had to have them again. This time with steamed green beans, red and yellow peppers, and oven-roasted potatoes and mushrooms (roasted once again in duck fat, naturally).
We get the duck legs in vacuum sealed packages from one of the vendors at St.Lawrence Market.
The legs throw of a tremendous amount of beautiful fat. This is how much that was drained off - minus the amount put into the potatoes....
Half way through the roasting the duck was liberally covered with dried thyme and whole bay leaves and garlic cloves were roasted til caramelized in the copious amounts of fat thrown off by the legs. Once done, these were removed and set aside to be added to the plates.
The wine: Chateauneuf du Pape Chateau de Beaucastel 1990 (with the dust still attached)
The wine was superb, still a little fruity with even a small amount of tannin left and the most wonderful herbal notes (was it mint??) In fact, it was so rich and full that between the two of us, we only drank half the bottle!!
We began this amazing dinner with an escarole salad with goat's cheese and a simple warm vinaigrette (yes, we did add a little duck fat to the salad...).
After the salad course, it was time to deglaze the casserole dish with the tiniest amount of Chateauneuf du Pape. (They do say one is supposed to cook with drinkable wine.)
The caramelized garlic was (of course) spectacular. But the real surprise was the bay leaf. It too was fabulous. Crisp and wonderfully bay-like - but not overly so because of course, it had been deep fried in duckfat and released much of its flavour into the duck.
Crusty baguettes or bread formed into a ring.