If you eat meat, then duck is a beautiful thing to enjoy. And I hope most of you will agree that the Chinese are true masters in cooking duck well. Flavorsome, crispy skins, moist meat & great looking, I can sing praise of a perfect cooked duck for days and days! I can never forget the first time I tasted Peking duck in
However, eating is one thing, cooking a perfect duck is a real challenge. You see, our home kitchen can never compare to a professional kitchen in terms of equipment. So it is almost impossible to re-create the type of duck available in restaurants. But I do believe with some simple equipment, we all can adapt the recipes to cook up our favorite at home.
The recipe I chose for my duck today is not Peking duck, but the
I am very pleased with the results. The duck is crispy outside and moist, meaty inside. I have served the duck with some store-bought Chinese pancake, cucumber, spring onions and hoisin sauce. You can prepare the pancake at home, too, but I find that dealing with the duck is far too much already. Thus, this product becomes handy and is quite good, too (I get it from David Jones Food Hall if you ask).
I think for a first timer, this result is quite satisfying. It is really a great pleasure to roll up the beautiful cooked duck in those paper thin pancakes, knowing that all the hard work is worthy in the end. Perhaps some day I will be brave enough to attempt the famous Chinese roast duck. Yeah, why not?
And for those duck lovers who want to cook up a storm at home, here is the recipe…
Sichuan-style Crispy Duck
Adapted from Neil Perry´s recipe and other sources
- Large steaming basket, enough to hold the whole duck
- A large wok to deep fry (or use a deep-fryer)
- A fan, cake rack and baking sheet
Ingredients (for 2-3 duck lovers to share as main meal)
1 duck, weigh about 2 kg
1 tbsp fine sea salt
1 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
1 large knob ginger, peeled, cut into 4 slices
4 spring onion
2 tbsp light soy sauce
Oil, for frying
Mandarin pancakes (or store bought Peking duck wrap)
8 small spring onions, white part with a bit of green left on
1 cucumber, cut into 8 batons
6 tbsp hoisin sauce mixed with 2 tbs sesame oil
- Rinse the duck, pat dry and remove the fat from the cavity. Place the duck on a board and push down hard to snap the side bones so the duck flattens slightly.
- Mix the sea salt with five-spice powder, Rub the salt mixture all over the duck, then the cavity. Cover and chill overnight in the fridge.
- Put the duck on a bamboo steamer. Place ginger and spring onion in the cavity (spread out so that the fragrance will be distributed evenly). Steamed the duck for three hours over boiling water to render the fat. Remember to top up your steamer with boiling water regularly.
- After three hours, drain the duck on a baking rack and cool, using a fan. Remove the onion and ginger. Make sure the skin is dry.
- Brush the duck with the soya sauce. Dust it with plain flour and bowling off any excess.
- In a large wok, heat enough oil to half submerge the duck to 180C. Place the duck in the wok, breast side down. Turn over after 3 mins, and cook for another 2 mins. (The duck should be cooked in a total of 12 mins, turning side to side). Remove and drain.
- To serve, cut off the legs and with a fork, loosen the fibres of the leg meat. Repeat this process for the rest of the duck. Shred the meat and place on a warm plate.
- Prepare the pancake according to package direction. TO eat, place the pancake on the plate, spoon over some sauce, place a piece of cucumber and onion with some duck and roll up. Enjoy!