While not always healthy, duck fat is an undeniably delicious way to amp up the flavour in many dishes. Using it also gives many home cooks more value out of a whole bird (or even if you are just grilling some breasts).
However, there are obviously more ways to do it than just slap it on to a frying pan like any other oil. Duck fat has a high smoke point, which means it can be used in a variety of different grilled, fried and seared dishes. Here are just three amazing ways you can play around with its unique effect on flavour (and which you can easily try at home).
1. Fries and chips.
This is usually the first trick that many home cooks go for. You just take some leftover fat from the duck you cooked last night, grab some fries or chips and toss them in.
Still, you can certainly do a little bit better than that. For example, try looking up some of the best kinds of potatoes used for homemade chips. Think about the way you’re cutting them up as well. And lastly, there’s nothing wrong with adding a bit of seasoning for a spicy twist.
2. Fried noodles.
A lesser known but no less delicious trick is using duck fat in fried noodles. The way the fat works in these recipes is surprisingly similar to potatoes, but it also adds a rich mouthfeel.
To start, just take a fairly standard fried noodle recipe with not too many ingredients and swap the oil for duck fat. This also works with a variety of noodle types whether it’s yakisoba, rice noodles or even plain ramen noodles.
And of course, whatever Asian spices you think goes well on duck will work incredibly well on these noodles too!
3. Grilled and seared meats.
When you know that butter is used to sear and baste steak, then you can bet that duck fat can easily fulfill the same purpose. And given that it’s smoke point is actually higher than butter’s, it can even be a better option if you want a more well-done steak.
This works whether you are searing the steak on a stovetop or as part of a longer grill recipe. And if you’re basting, try throwing in some spices into the fat as well to further enhance the flavour.
On a final note, remember that duck fat is still much like butter in terms of cholesterol content so it’s best taken moderately. That said though, these tricks can be a very effective way to enhance dishes for special occasions. Give them a shot when you have the chance!