Duck Confit Shepherd’s Pie Recipe Revisited

by Anne Maxfield on October 4, 2012

Accidental Locavore KaleIf you’re thinking this looks familiar, the Accidental Locavore has been revisiting this shepherd’s pie recipe for a contest. Comfort food gets sophisticated in this grown-up shepherd’s pie with kale and potatoes from the Greenmarket. I tossed together mashed potatoes, duck confit and kale, then topped with cheese for a decadent dinner. This will feed 4 people.

Duck Confit Shepherd’s Pie With Kale

Serves 4
Prep time 30 minutes
Cook time 20 minutes
Total time 50 minutes
Meal type Main Dish
The Accidental Locavore makes a sophisticated recipe for a grown-up shepherd’s pie. The main course recipe combines mashed potatoes, duck confit, kale and cheese.


  • 5 medium Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 3 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2/3 cups milk
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (use duck fat if you have it from the confit)
  • 3 duck legs confit
  • 1 bunch kale
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4lb Sonoma Dry Jack cheese


Step 1
Preheat the oven to 375°. Peel and quarter the potatoes. In a medium sauce pan over high heat, cook the potatoes in salted water until tender about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat, drain and return to the pan. Add 2 tablespoons of the butter, milk, salt and pepper and mash the potatoes with a hand masher or electric mixer. Set aside.
Step 2
In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, add half the olive oil and the duck legs, skin side down. Cook for about 5 minutes, until the skin has started to crisp up, and is dark golden brown. Flip the legs over, and cook for another 3 minutes. Remove from the pan and set aside.
Step 3
Remove the ribs from the kale and coarsely chop. Peel and finely mince the garlic. Add the rest of the olive oil, garlic and kale to the pan (that the duck legs were in). Toss the kale to coat with the olive oil. As the kale begins to wilt, cover with a lid and turn the heat down to medium and cook until just wilted, about 4 minutes.
Step 4
While the kale is cooking, remove the skin from the duck legs and set aside. Remove the meat from the duck legs, shred into large pieces and set aside.
Step 5
Grate the cheese, using the medium sized holes on the grater and set aside.
Assembling the shepherd’s pies
Step 6
With the remaining tablespoon of butter, lightly grease a 8 ½”x11” oven-proof gratin pan, or 3 individual pans.
Step 7
Put an even layer of kale on the bottom of the pan, add the shredded duck confit and top with the mashed potatoes. Sprinkle the grated cheese on top. Garnish with the reserved duck skin.
Step 8
Bake until the cheese is melted and golden brown, about 15 minutes. Serve and enjoy.

My verdict: Still a winner. The kale cuts some of the richness of the duck confit and adds a healthy green veg to make it a complete meal. If you don’t have a couple of duck legs confit lying around, a lot of gourmet markets carry them or you can order them from D’Artganan.


{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Sam Bilton October 12, 2012 at 7:44 am

This recipe caught my eye straight away as I adore duck confit. I’m planning to make a hunters pie this weekend using venison mince but with a rosti topping (my eldest boy hates mashed potato but is pretty good with most things).

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