Peking Duck

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We have recently added some ducks to the allotment. Our sole intention is to grow these ducks for meat. I know I could go duck hunting and bring home a nice little batch. But the difference is our allotment ducks won’t contain lead shot. Wild ducks do have an incredible game flavour that may be hard to replicate with these birds. We’ll have to wait and see. I have made confit duck countless times and have cooked pan fried duck breast often, so I wanted to come up with a special dish for our ducks. The fact that these ducks are for eating and not for laying I wanted the kids to understand what would be happening when the ducks were big enough. In the past our kids never batted an eye lid at a raw chicken for cooking. And now after explaining it to them they know where the eggs come from and how we get our food to the table. By cooking this dish the kids got to understand exactly whats happening when we cook our ducks. This dish takes a while to make, at least 24hrs, so be patient. It is incredibly tasty and the reward is the sweet succulent crispy skin. This skin is definitely the highlight of the dish and when I made it there wasn’t a scrap left. Needless to say but duck meat is a hit in our house. Success all round.

Ingredients :

1 large duck

1 tub of Maltose ( found in an asian supermarket )

Chinese 5 spice

Long grain rice

Rice wine vinegar 150mls

Dark soy sauce

Spring onions

Cucumber

Hoisin sauce

The Make:

Firstly prepare your duck by trimming off excess skin at the neck. Next cut off the wings. If your duck came with the insides keep them and add them to a pot with the wings and the cut off skin. Add some water to the pot and season with salt and pepper. Bring this to a simmer for a while to make an amazing stock. Put this aside once it’s made. Now back to the duck. Start at the neck and using your fingers free the skin from the breast of the duck. This is a little difficult but it is important to allow the skin to be free from the meat to let it crisp in the oven. Do not remove the skin from the bird leave it attached. Bring a large pot of water to the boil. Add in the rice vinegar and soy sauce. Using a butchers hook dip the duck in and out of the hot water a couple of times. Let it drain off the water. Now shake a generous helping of the 5 spice into the cavity of the duck. Place the duck on a rack roasting tray. Now put your duck into a fridge over night to allow it to dry out. The next day remove the duck from the fridge. Add the tub of maltose to a pot with a little boiling water. Allow this to become syrup. Using a baking brush paint the outside of the duck with maltose syrup. Let it dry and repeat the process a couple of times until you have thick layer of glazing on the duck. I used a hair dryer to speed things along for me.

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Heat your oven to 200C. Add a little water to the roasting tray and place duck into oven. Turn heat down to 160C and let it roast for around 90 minutes. Once done remove it from the oven and allow it to cool a little. Using a knife and fork remove the skin. It should come away in one piece. Now shred the duck using a fork. I boiled my rice with the duck stock I had made. Serve the meat and crispy skin with a garnish of cucumber, spring onions, rice and hoisin sauce. Enjoy.

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