DC Refined: These four dishes are worth the wait…literally
“To get the most succulent and flavorful results, chefs often use slow cooking methods that involve low heat and lots of time. A pot roast or a chicken stock might take several hours, but some chefs have come up with preparation methods so elaborate that they make a Crockpot seem like a microwave. Here are four spots that are taking the Slow Food movement literally. (Luckily, the finished product will only take a few minutes to arrive at your table.)
Naturally, Blue Duck Tavern gives a little extra TLC to their star protein. They serve a whole roasted Rohan duck with Worcestershire sauce and spiced honey that takes seven days to prepare. First, the duck is dried and coated in a house-made Worcestershire sauce. It is then cooked for an entire day at various temperatures to ensure that the meat is juicy and tender. Finally, it’s glazed with spiced honey and finished off in a wood-burning oven to crisp the skin. The whole duck is presented tableside and then fully carved and served. Intended for two people, the dish is priced at $110, and only a few are available nightly.
As if they weren’t already tender enough, Provision 14 puts their suckling pig legs through a week-long process so that the meat will literally fall off the bone. The legs are brined in sugar, salt, and spices for five to six days before being braised in a pork stock for six to eight hours. After the braising is complete, the legs are left to cool in the stock overnight and then hung to dry for up to 24 hours. Once the skin is dry, the leg is deep fried, giving it a crunchy exterior. The communal dish is served with deep-fried banana barbecue sauce, chili vinegar sauce, and cilantro lime aioli.
After a year of aging, The Restaurant at Patowmack Farm’s annual suckling pig is devoured in one weekend. Chef Tarver King de-bones a whole pig (keeping it in tact), cures it for three days, and then cooks it in rendered pig fat for about 12 hours. Once it’s cooked, he submerges the pig in fat to create a seal, and lets it age for an entire year. The fat seal preserves the meat and imparts a unique and subtle tanginess. Each December, the pig is cut out of the fat, sliced into ‘steaks,’ and seared in a pan to give it a crispy finish while keeping the inside tender. King experiments with different flavors for each pig, including Korean barbecue spices and an Italian medley of garlic, fennel, and wine.”
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Featured photo courtesy of Park Hyatt Washington/Blue Duck Tavern.