I’ve never really been a fan of turkey and sometimes a roast chook just doesn’t cut it. Duck is one of those things that people don’t often cook and it’s nice to pull it out for a special occasion and impress family and friends.
Serves 4 (as a main) or 6–8 (as part of a Chinese barbeque banquet)
Ingredients 1 duck Kecap manis Olive oil
Master stock (makes 2½ litres) ½ cup Mekong whisky ½ cup shao hsing ⅓ cup dark soy sauce 2 tbsp light soy sauce 80g yellow rock sugar 2 cloves garlic 2 large knobs ginger ⅓ bunch spring onion, roughly chopped 1 tsp cardamom pods 3 star anise 1 piece cassia bark
Stir-fry 40ml vegetable oil 250g shitake mushroom, stem removed and cut in quarters 3–4 lap cheong sausages, finely sliced, diagonally 20g ginger, julienned 40ml soy sauce 20ml sesame oil 15g sugar 4 heads of bok choy, washed and cut in half, lengthways
Ginger soy dressing 3 coriander roots 1–2 small garlic cloves 10g ginger 1 birds eye chilli, seeds removed 100g caster sugar 125ml light soy sauce 125ml kecap manis 125ml distilled rice vinegar 60ml yellow bean sauce
Garnish Coriander Chilli-o’s (chopped chilli rings)
Master stock Put all ingredients in a pot with 2 litres of water. Bring to the boil, then simmer for about 30 minutes or until the flavours infuse.
Duck Add the duck to the master stock and turn the heat to a simmer. Braise the whole duck in master stock for 90–105 minutes (to test, pull the leg – it should move freely but the bone shouldn’t pull away). Remove from braising liquid and allow it to cool right off.
Cut the cooked duck in half and remove the back bone. Place on a cake rack, skin side up in a roasting pan and brush with kecap manis and vegetable oil. Roast in the oven on 230°C until the duck is golden and the skin crisp.
Stir-fry Heat wok or large heavy-based frying pan on a high heat. Add vegetable oil and once it starts to smoke, add the shiitake mushrooms, lap cheong and ginger.
Add the soy sauce, sesame oil and sugar. Continue to cook until the mushrooms start to soften. Add the bok choy and a splash of water, cover with a lid and allow to steam quickly, until just cooked. Once ready, check the seasoning (it should be subtle yet balanced). Plate.
Dressing Place all ingredients in a blender and blitz until fine. Place in a large pot over heat and stir to combine. Bring to boil and remove immediately to chill. Set aside until ready to serve.
To finish Carve the duck and place on top of your stir fry. Dress with gingered soy, garnish with coriander and some red chilli o’s (optional).