Collecting and storing Duck Fat

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Joined Jun 23, 2010
A question about duck fat... specifically about collecting and storing duck fat.   I made a roasted duck that involved a two-step cooking method.  First step braised the duck in water for a couple of hours.  Next step removed the duck from the cooking liquid, and allowed both to chill.  Next day the cooking liquid was defatted and the duck went back in the pan and was roasted with a glaze.  It was delicious!   But here's the question:  It seemed criminal to discard the 3 CUPS of thick, white duck fat that solidified over the chilled cooking liquid.  I gathered it up and popped it into the freezer.   Will this be OK to use another time for cassoulet or something else?  When I looked for instructions for collecting duck fat, they just melt the fat directly.  My duck fat "cooked" in water for a couple of hours.  Will that change it's use-ability?    Should I have filtered it? My first time with a duck, so I'm a new-by here. Thoughts?  Ideas?
 
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Joined Aug 15, 2003
You should be fine. How else do you think other places harness duck fat? It has to be rendered somehow. I probably would have strained it, but there shouldn't be a problem doing that once you thaw it from the freezer (you'll have to warm it up, of course). 

I mean, most places even re-use duck fats (strained confit fat) a few times. After a while the fat begins to break down and can also get pretty salty, so it doesn't last forever, but 2-3 times is pretty normal in my experience. 

Enjoy! Don't limit it to just cassoulet...duck fat is great for frying potatoes, cooking other vegetables, just about anywhere you would use butter or other cooking fats. 
 
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Joined Sep 5, 2008
+1, you should be fine. I've often harnessed duck fat from reheating confit, or from roasting a fresh duck, etc.. and have had only few issues. 

The few issues I've been were for example to properly separate the fat from the gelatin that the duck also renders. I've ended up with containers full of duck fat but that also included a bit of gelatin at the bottom or middle... and that tends to create issues as time does its thing... well I don't freeze my duck fat, I keep it in the fridge, so that could be the issue. But after a few weeks I've had to throw the whole batch. Probably wouldn't even be an issue when frozen!

But those times when I've properly separated and strained my duck fat, I've kept it very simply: in a jar in the fridge, with a small plate resting on the jar's opening in order to close it. I don't really like plastic and I don't really like most jar's lids, so that's what I do. Using that method, I've kept (and used) duck fat (that I harvested myself from confit or roasts etc....) for months and months... probably at least 6 months in the fridge. So it shouldn't be an issue in the freezer. 

And if you don't know what to do with it, or don't have the time to do a cassoulet (that can be time consuming) then at least use it to roast potatoes in it. There's just nothing like it. 
 
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34
10
Joined Jun 23, 2010
 
+1, you should be fine. I've often harnessed duck fat from reheating confit, or from roasting a fresh duck, etc.. and have had only few issues. 

The few issues I've been were for example to properly separate the fat from the gelatin that the duck also renders. I've ended up with containers full of duck fat but that also included a bit of gelatin at the bottom or middle... and that tends to create issues as time does its thing... well I don't freeze my duck fat, I keep it in the fridge, so that could be the issue. But after a few weeks I've had to throw the whole batch. Probably wouldn't even be an issue when frozen!

But those times when I've properly separated and strained my duck fat, I've kept it very simply: in a jar in the fridge, with a small plate resting on the jar's opening in order to close it. I don't really like plastic and I don't really like most jar's lids, so that's what I do. Using that method, I've kept (and used) duck fat (that I harvested myself from confit or roasts etc....) for months and months... probably at least 6 months in the fridge. So it shouldn't be an issue in the freezer. 

And if you don't know what to do with it, or don't have the time to do a cassoulet (that can be time consuming) then at least use it to roast potatoes in it. There's just nothing like it. 
thank you so much for your experience and advice!  I'm looking forward to roasting some potatoes SOON
 
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Joined Jun 23, 2010
Thank you!  Appreciate your thoughts on that.  Great, great great.  I'll be using this soon!
 

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