A much-loved sharing dish in Chinese restaurants, this roasted duck, seasoned with spice and sticky with sweetness, is surprisingly easy to recreate at home. The tender meat and crisp skin is served shredded, alongside strips of cucumber and spring onions, all ready to be wrapped in light-as-a-feather pancakes. You’ll need to start preparing your duck about four hours before you want to serve it, but aside from investing the time there is very little work involved – just delicious, crispy rewards!
Crispy duck pancakes
Serves 10 as a starter
- 1.8kg whole duck
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp dry sherry
- 1 tbsp brown rice wine vinegar (see note)
- 1 tsp five spice powder
- 20 ready-made chinese pancakes (see note)
- 1 bunch of spring onions, finely sliced into matchsticks
- 1 cucumber, finely sliced into matchsticks
- Hoisin or plum sauce, to serve
- Place a large pan of water over a high heat and bring it to the boil. Carefully lower in the duck.
- Once the bird is completely immersed, switch off the heat and leave it to soak for 30 minutes.
- Drain the duck, pat it dry with kitchen paper, then leave to cool for another 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, make a marinade by combining the honey, sherry, vinegar and five spice in a small bowl.
- Season the duck well with sea salt and rub it into the skin. Brush the bird all over with half the marinade, then place in the fridge for 1 hour. Reserve the rest of the marinade for later.
- Preheat the oven to 170C/gas 3. Place the duck on a wire rack over a roasting tray with a little water in the bottom. Brush the bird well with the remaining marinade, then place in the oven for 2 hours.
- After 1 hour 30 minutes, turn the heat up to 200C/gas 6 and roast for the final 30 minutes, until dark in colour, caramelised and super crispy.
- Remove the duck from the oven and transfer to a board to rest for about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, heat the pancakes according to the packet instructions and set aside.
- Using two forks, shred the meat of the duck (discard the bones), then serve with the pancakes, sliced greens and the hoisin or plum sauce.
Note You can buy brown rice vinegar and chinese pancakes from Waitrose or Asian supermarkets.
Per serving 160 cals, 4.5g fat (1.2g sat fats), 12.3g protein, 16.5g carbs, 5.1g sugars
Recipes & styling: Jodene Jordan; Photography: Dan Jones