Carthay Circle Restaurant is the crown jewel and most magical dining experience at Disney California Adventure Park at the Disneyland Resort – not only for its namesake, but it’s cuisine that is as beautiful as the restaurant itself!
In what is described as sophisticated California fusion, the flavors and freshness at the only fine dining establishment inside DCA are a must-have if you’re a local to a visiting guest. Headed up by Disneyland Resort’s fine dining chefs Andrew Sutton and Gloria Tae (from Napa Rose), the menus change frequently depending on the season and what’s just really good food.
Lots have come out from Carthay’s kitchens and one of the fall dishes that has made its way onto the menu is a Harvest Apple Salad featuring in-season, crisp California apples complemented with duck confit. It really elevates the salad into its own league with its contrasting flavors even in the simplicity in its preparation.
Ready to dig in and try it yourself? Go ahead and make a reservation for the restaurant by clicking HERE or by calling 1(714) 781-3463. If you’re not in the mood to go out, that’s no problem as we’ve included the official recipe and even a video that goes step-by-step in preparing the salad below
Harvest Apple Salad with Crispy Duck Confit
Duck Confit –
- 4 skin-on, bone-in duck legs
- Coarse salt freshly ground black pepper
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme, 3 dried bay leaves
- Olive oil for covering duck in roasting pan
- Cider Vinaigrette
- 1/3 cup fresh apple cider
- 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup honey mustard or Dijon mustard
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
- Coarse salt, freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 4 gala apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 6 wedges per apple
- 4 tablespoons melted butter
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 4 granny smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/4-inch-wide sticks
- 6 cups thinly sliced kale
- 6 cups thinly sliced frisée lettuce
- 10 breakfast radishes, thinly sliced
For duck confit –
- Generously salt and pepper duck legs and set aside at room temperature for 1 hour.
- Prick skin of duck legs all over with a needle or a small, sharp knife, being careful not to pierce the meat. Preheat oven to 300°F.
- Heat skillet over medium-high heat and sear duck legs until golden on both sides. Place in a baking dish just large enough to fit all 6 legs and cover with rendered duck fat from skillet. Add thyme, bay leaves, and enough olive oil to submerge duck.
- Place in oven, uncovered, and bake 2 hours. Remove from oven and allow to cool in fat to room temperature.
- Remove duck legs from fat; remove meat from bones, discarding bones; pull meat into shreds.
- Place shredded meat in a medium skillet over medium-high heat; cook just until duck is crispy. Set aside.
- Place apple cider and vinegar in a small saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil and reduce by half, about 8 to 10 minutes. Set aside to cool completely.
- Combine reduced apple cider-vinegar and mustard in blender; blend until combined. With blender on medium speed, slowly stream in olive oil.
- Removed from blender and place in bowl; stir in thyme and parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Smear cold butter in bottom of large skillet. Sprinkle with brown sugar. Add apples slices and turn on heat to medium-high. As butter begins to melt and sugar caramelizes, turn apples to brown both sides.
- Add more butter if necessary; cook apples until tender, about 8 to 10 minutes, turning often. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Combine kale, frisée, radishes, and gala apple sticks in a large bowl, tossing to combine.
- Add shredded duck. Add just enough dressing to coat, tossing to combine. Serve immediately with caramelized apple slices.
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Will you be making this salad for your next meal at home or will you try it when you visit Carthay Circle Restaurant next? If you’ve been to the restaurant, what is your favorite dish from what you tried there? Tell us in the comments!