Duck Confit and Fig Crostini; Photo - Danielle Sucher

These crostini make wonderful appetizers and snacks, a rich bright complex flavor for very little time and effort.

If you don't want to cook in this heat (and who can blame you for fleeing the stove during the summer?), you can buy duck confit pre-made at any gourmet grocery and only spend a minute at the stove reheating it and sizzling the aromatics to put these crostini together.

Fresh curry leaves are easy to find at Kalustyan's on E. 28th St. and Lexington Ave. in Manhattan and at the Park Slope Food Co-op, or at any Indian grocery.

Duck Confit and Fig Crostini
Approximately 1 1/2 C shredded duck confit (recipe below, or buy pre-made)
5ish fresh figs
30 or so fresh curry leaves
1 tbsp mustard seeds
Olive oil
Baguette
Cucumber
Salt

Slice the cucumber into thin rounds, using a mandoline if you have one. Mix with a few tablespoons of salt, then set aside for at about an hour. Rinse the cucumber slices, squeeze them dry as you can, and set aside.

Slice a baguette, and toast the slices is you like.

Splash a bit of oil into a pan, then add some mustard seeds, some curry leaves, and some of the shredded duck confit. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until the mustard seeds start to pop, the curry leaves start to sizzle, and the duck is warmed through.

Slice the figs into 1/4" thick rounds. Put fig slices onto the baguette slices, then the duck confit with curry leaves and mustard seeds, then the cucumber slices. Garnish with an extra curry leaf.

Duck Confit
1 duck, legs and wings only (save the breasts to sear and eat separately)
Rendered duck fat or oil
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp dried sage
1/2 tsp dried rosemary
Plenty of salt.

Take you some duck legs, and wings if you have them, and put them in a pot. Cover them with rendered duck fat and/or oil. Add the other ingredients. Cook for a couple of hours at a low simmer (the moisture in the duck will simmer; the oil won't, of course), until the duck is very tender and easily pierced with a fork or even a toothpick. Remove the duck, cool and drain, then shred the meat.