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Peking Duck


[Ingredients]

  • 1 2.75kg duck (preferably Cherry Valley)

  • 2tbsp cider vinegar

  • 1.2 litres water

  • 3tbsp honey

  • 3tbsp dark soy sauce

[Serving]

  • Chinese pancakes*

  • 4 finely shredded spring onion

  • 1 peeled and deseeded cucumber - cut into 5cm sticks

  • 6tbsp hoisin/sweet bean sauce

*[Chinese Pancake]

  • 275g plain flour + extra for dusting

  • 250ml very hot water

  • 2tbsp sesame oil

[Steps]

  1. If duck is frozen, thaw it thoroughly. Rinse well and pat dry completely. Insert a meat hook neck the neck.

  2. Combine vinegar, water, honey and soy sauce together, bring to boil.

  3. Holding the duck up, use a large ladle and pour syrup over the duck for a few times until the skin is completely coated with the mixture.

  4. Hang the duck to dry in a cool, well-ventilated place or hang it in front of a cold fan for 4 to 5hrs. Put a tray underneath to catch drips. Once the skin is dry, it will feel like parchment.

  5. Preheat oven 240degC.

  6. Place duck, breast side down on a roasting rack in a roasting tin. Fill the tin with 150ml of water - this will prevent fat splattering.

  7. Roast duck for 15mins. Turn heat down to 180degC and continue to roast for 10mins. Replenish the water if needed.

  8. Remove suck from oven and let sit for 10mins.

  9. Cut the skin and meat into pieces and arrange on a warm platter. Serve with pancakes, spring onion, cucumber and sauce.

  10. Chinese Pancake: Place flour in a large bowl. Gradually stir in hot water, mixing using a pair of chopsticks or fork until fully incorporated. Add more water if mixture seems dry.

  11. Turn dough out and knead using hands for 8mins until dough is smooth, dust with flour if needed. It may be quite sticky at this time.

  12. Place dough back into the bowl, cover using a damp tea towel and let rest for 30mins.

  13. Remove dough from bowl and knead again for 5mins, dust with more flour if it's sticky.

  14. Once the dough is smooth, roll it into 45cm long and 2.5cm thick. Cut into 18 equal pieces and shape each one into a ball.

  15. Take 2 dough balls. Dip one side of one ball into the sesame oil and place the oiled side on top of the other ball.

  16. Using a rolling pin, roll the 2 pancakes simultaneously into a circle about 15cm in diameter.

  17. Heat a frying pan over low heat. Place the double pancake in and cook for 1 to 2mins until it is dry underneath. There may be brown specks.

  18. Flip over and cook the other side until dry.

  19. Remove pancake from pan and let it cool slightly. When it is warm but still cool to handle, peel the 2 pancakes apart and set them aside.

  20. Repeat this process until all the dough balls have been cooked.

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