Chinese wine-simmered duck

all details

This may look like a daunting amount of ingredients, but you can strain and freeze the aromatic stock for another time and perhaps do the same thing with a whole chicken. Presenting a whole duck to the table is a dramatic touch. However, the dish works well using duck legs instead - 1 per person. You'll only need half as much stock as given here.

Chinese wine-simmered duck
Photo: Marina Oliphant

Ingredients

  • 1.8kg whole duck
  • 12 dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked in warm water for 45 minutes
  • 2 daikon, peeled and cut into large pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups peanut oil for frying
  • 1 packet fresh egg noodles
  • Title:Braising liquid
  • 1 bottle medium-bodied wine (such as chianti or pinot)
  • 1 litre chicken stock
  • 1 litre water
  • 1 cup light soy
  • 300ml shaoxing rice wine
  • 5 star anise
  • 5 spring onions
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
  • 2 large knobs ginger, peeled and sliced
  • 150g rock sugar (or brown sugar)
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 tsp sesame oil

Method

Combine the stock ingredients and simmer for 30 minutes to allow the flavours to develop. Cut the stems off the soaked mushrooms and add to the stock with the daikon pieces.

Rinse the duck in cold water and gently lower into the simmering stock, breast side down. The duck should be fully submerged. If not, add water to cover. Once the liquid has returned to a simmer (do not allow it to boil), reduce the heat and simmer very gently for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and let the duck steep in the stock for 3 hours (this can be done the night before), then gently reheat in the pot.

Remove the duck - the best way is to use tongs. Place on a wire rack to drain and cool. Cut the duck in half along the breast bone using scissors or a sharp knife. Remove the legs from the breasts and cut in half through the joint. Cut the back bone from the breast and trim any bony pieces, then cut each breast in four pieces.

Heat a wok with the peanut oil to very hot. Pat the pieces of duck dry with kitchen paper and slide into the wok one at a time. Cook for a minute on each side until the duck becomes deep mahogany brown, then remove and drain on kitchen paper.

Cook the noodles in boiling water for a few minutes, then drain.Arrange on a large deep platter the duck, mushrooms, daikon and pour over the broth.

To serve 

Serve with the noodles and steamed greens.

If you wish to avoid frying, simply heat the duck pieces in the stock and serve them that way.

*Note: Image shows wine simmered duck on a simplified presentation of boiled rice.

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  • Cuisine - Chinese
  • Course - Main-course

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