Adapted from a 19th-century recipe by Welsh heiress & arts patron, Lady Llanover, when salted a day in advance the duck will have wonderful crispy skin!
6 duck legs
2 tbsp sea salt
2 tbsp sunflower oil
500 g button onions
500 g potatoes
175 g smoked bacon lardons
4 or 5 sage leaves
200 g spinach leaves
2 tbsp Sherry vinegar
- Place the duck legs in a dish and sprinkle over the salt, rubbing it into the skin. Cover with plastic wrap and chill.
- Rinse the duck legs under cold water to remove the salt. Pat dry with a clean towel. Heat oven to 160C/140C fan. Heat the oil in a large frying pan. Place the duck, fat-side down, in the pan and cook gently for 15 mins until crisp and golden.
- Flip the duck and pour off the fat into a small bowl – keep this for later. Cook for a further 15-20 mins, then transfer to a roasting dish. If your pan isn’t big enough, cook the duck in batches. When all the duck is cooked, put in the oven for 40-50 mins while you finish the dish.
- Put the onions in a pan with 1 tbsp of the reserved duck fat and gently cook for 20 mins until golden. Meanwhile, boil the potatoes for 15 mins in a pan of salted water, then drain, peel and leave to cool.
- Tip 2 tbsp of the reserved fat into the duck pan and add the potatoes, bacon, onions and sage. Fry for 10 mins until golden, then add the spinach. Cook for 4 mins to wilt the spinach, then add the vinegar. Turn up the heat to bubble off any excess liquid, then spread this over a large serving plate. Arrange the duck on top and serve.