Brined Roast Turkey Breast with Confit Legs

De Arbol (Capsicum Annuum) means tree like in Spanish. The plant has thick, upright, woody stems and the chile itself is narrow, curved and bright red in color. Believed to be closely related to the pequin, the De Arbol is thin fleshed, with tannic, smoky, grassy flavor and searing heat. This chile has a heat range of 7.5 on the heat scale of 1-10. De Arbol Chiles are comparable to a Cayenne Pepper. Scoville heat units 15,000 to 30,000.

Suggested Use:
De Arbol is a hot chile and a staple in Southwest kitchens. Add some heat to your next salsa or Mexican dish. Be adventurous and add them to your next stew or chili along with the other spices. Add some heat to your next salsa or Mexican dish.

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1 14-pound turkey, legs and thighs cut from carcass, keeping drumsticks and thighs attached, wings cut from breast
Turkey leg and wing confit:
2 dried chiles de árbol, crumbled
1/4 cup kosher salt
1 tablespoon freshly cracked black pepper
6 sprigs thyme
3 sprigs sage
2 4″ sprigs rosemary
2 bay leaves
4 2×1/2″ strips lemon zest (yellow part only, from about 1/2 lemon)
9 cups duck fat

Brine for breast:
2 tablespoons allspice berries
2 tablespoons juniper berries
1 tablespoon fennel seeds
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/3 cup sugar
1 onion, sliced
1 carrot, peeled, cut on a diagonal
1/2 fennel bulb, sliced
8 sprigs flat-leaf parsley
8 sprigs thyme
2 bay leaves
2 dried chiles de árbol
2 whole cloves

Roast breast:
1 sliced yellow onion
1/2 bunch sage sprigs
1/2 bunch thyme sprigs
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper


Yield 10 servings (with some leftovers)

For turkey leg and wing confit:
Place whole legs and wings on a baking sheet. Rub chiles, salt, and pepper all over turkey, and transfer to a large resealable plastic bag. Scatter herbs and lemon zest all around turkey in bag. Seal bag and chill overnight.

Preheat oven to 250°F. Brush off herbs and excess salt from legs and wings. Heat duck fat in a heavy 5-quart pot over low heat just until melted and warm. Add legs and wings to pot and submerge. Place turkey in oven and cook until legs are tender and a paring knife can be easily inserted into the thickest part of thigh, 3-3 1/2 hours. Let turkey cool in duck fat at room temperature, about 2 hours. Cover and chill overnight. DO AHEAD: Confit can be made 3 days ahead. Keep chilled.

For brine for breast:
Coarsely crush allspice berries with a mortar and pestle. Alternatively, place in a resealable plastic freezer bag and crush with a rolling pin or the bottom of a skillet. Transfer to a large pot. Repeat with juniper berries, then fennel seeds. Place spices in pot. Add salt, sugar, and 2 cups hot water to pot with spices. Stir until salt and sugar dissolve. Add onion, carrot, fennel, parsley and thyme sprigs, bay leaves, chiles, and cloves. Add 3 quarts very cold water and stir to combine. Place turkey breast in brine. Place a plate on top, if necessary, to keep breast submerged. Cover and chill overnight.

For roast breast:
Preheat oven to 450°F. Line a large roasting pan with foil. Set a rack inside pan. Scatter onion, sage, and thyme over rack. Remove turkey breast from brine. Pat dry with paper towels. Place turkey breast on top of herbs on rack.

Brush breast with melted butter. Season with salt and pepper. Roast turkey for 30 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300°F, cover breast loosely with foil, and continue to roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of breast registers 160°F, 2 1/2-3 hours total. Let breast rest for at least 30 minutes before carving.

Meanwhile, rewarm confit legs and wings in duck fat over medium heat. Remove legs and wings from fat; transfer to a large nonstick or cast-iron skillet and cook over medium-high heat until skin is nicely browned, about 6 minutes per side. Strain fat from pan and freeze for future use. Carve breast and arrange on a platter. Place wings and legs alongside.

From Bon Appetit