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Duckling Cantonese



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Home of a Chinese Merchant Near Canton
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Allom, Thomas
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La Belle Cuisine


Duckling Cantonese
The Restaurant - Lenox, MA
Gourmet February 1987

A 4- to 5-pound duckling
1 tablespoon salt
8 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
1 cup soy sauce
12 garlic cloves, minced and mashed to a paste
3 tablespoons minced peeled fresh gingerroot
1 cup sake
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
2 navel oranges, peeled, sliced thin (garnish)
1 bunch of scallions, including some of the
green part, sliced thin diagonally (garnish)

Discard the excess fat from the duckling, cut off the tail and all but 2 inches of the neck skin, and cut through the skin down the length of the backbone. Tuck the wings under the back, tie the legs 2 inches apart with kitchen string, and prick the duckling at 1/2-inch intervals with a needle. Rub the
salt into the duckling and rinse it off under running water. Hang the duck-
ling up by the string and let it dry in a cool dry place (about 6 hours).
In a tall narrow stockpot combine the stock, brown sugar, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, garlic, gingerroot, sake, and white pepper, bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, and simmer it for 20 minutes. Add the duckling, weight it down with a heavy plate so it is submerged, and simmer it, adding water if necessary to keep it covered with liquid, for 45 minutes. Drain the duckling, reserving the cooking liquid, and in a roasting pan just large enough to hold
it roast it breast side up in a preheated 350-degree F. oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until it is brown. Hang the duckling in the same manner as
before until it is barely warm (about 1 hour). Cut through the skin down
the length of the breastbone, break the wishbone carefully, and cut and
pull the meat away from the breastbone and backbone, keeping the skin
attached to the meat, and discarding the central bone structure.
Skim the fat from the reserved cooking liquid and reduce the liquid over
high heat to about 6 cups. Spoon 3 cups of the liquid (discard remaining
liquid) into a roasting pan just large enough to hold the duckling halves in
one layer, put the duckling skin side up in the pan, and roast it in a pre-
heated 450-degree F. oven for 35 minutes, or until the skin is crisp.
Arrange the duckling on a heated platter, spoon some of the pan juices
over it, and garnish the dish with the orange slices and the scallions.
Serves 4.

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