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The Terrace duck burger

The Terrace duck burger
Los Angeles Times

A cityscape studded with palm trees. A historic Sunset Boulevard hotel. Your dinner served to you poolside, your waiter bearing aloft the perfect hamburger. It's the quintessential L.A. experience. And yes, that includes the hamburger. Not a California roll, not ... Read more

Total time: 2 hours, 20 minutes, plus overnight standing time | Serves 4

Duck leg confit

  • 3 duck legs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 1/2 to 3 cups duck fat

Step 1Salt the duck legs with about one-half teaspoon salt for each leg. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Step 2Rinse the duck legs with cold water and pat them dry.

Step 3Heat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large ovenproof pot, bring to a simmer over medium heat enough duck fat to cover the legs. Once the fat has come to a simmer, place the legs in the pot. Cover and cook in the oven for about 2 hours.

Step 4Allow the duck legs to cool in the fat. Using tongs, remove the duck legs from the pan. Remove the skin and pull the meat from the legs.

Duck burgers and assembly

  • 1 recipe duck leg confit
  • 1 3/4 pounds ground (skinless) duck breast
  • 2 teaspoons finely minced red onion
  • 1 teaspoon chopped chives
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 good-quality hamburger buns
  • 4 slices heirloom tomato
  • 1/2 head butter lettuce
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 4 organic eggs

Step 1In a large bowl, mix the duck confit with the ground duck breasts. Mix in the red onion, chives, freshly ground white pepper, olive oil, egg yolk and salt.

Step 2Form four patties, about 7 to 8 ounces each. Heat the oven to 375 degrees.

Step 3In a very hot saute pan, sear the patties for about 1 minute on each side and finish in the oven for 4 to 6 minutes, until medium rare.

Step 4Wipe clean the saute pan and grill the buns until they are just crisp.

Step 5Place each burger on a crisp bun, and top with a slice of heirloom tomato and a couple leaves of butter lettuce.

Step 6In the saute pan, heat the butter over medium-high heat for a few minutes. Fry the eggs -- sunny side up -- for about 1 to 1 1/2 minutes, until the egg whites have solidified and set.

Step 7Place an egg on top of each burger. Serve open face with a drizzle of Dijon creme fraiche.

Note: From Andrea Tamburini of Tower Bar and the Terrace in the Sunset Tower Hotel. Start the confit the day before, or purchased duck confit can be used. For the Dijon creme fraiche, mix 4 tablespoons of creme fraiche with 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard; refrigerate until ready to use.


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