Braised duck rice plate

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Food and Travels: Asia

Food and Travels

By Alastair Hendy

Published 2004

  • About

The duck is first poached, then roasted - and then the braising liquid makes gravy. Simple, and hugely effective.


  • 1 whole duck
  • 6 shallots, chopped
  • 1 litre light chicken stock (fresh, instant or Asian stock)
  • 500 ml dark soy sauce
  • 400 ml Chinese rice wine
  • 3 tbsp runny honey
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 4 star anise or 2 tsp ground star anise vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • ½ head Chinese leaves, cut into chunks, or 4 heads bok choi
  • 1 tbsp cornflour mixed with 2 tbsp water

To serve


Sit the duck, bottom up, in a colander in the sink, then pour over a kettleful of boiling water, aiming inside as well as out. Leave the duck to drain. Put all the remaining ingredients apart from the vegetable oil, Chinese leaves and cornflour in a casserole pan (something in which the duck will snugly fit) and bring to a bubble, stirring to dissolve the honey. Then put in the duck, breast down, cover with a lid and gently braise on a very slow bubble for about 1 ½ hours, topping up the water level if it drops below the duck and turning the duck over for the last 20 minutes. Once cooled, lift out, drain off the delicious gravy, then leave the duck covered in the fridge for a few hours or overnight. Refrigerate the gravy, then skim off the fat.

Rub the duck all over with a touch of oil, set it on a roasting tray and roast in a 200°C/400°F/Gas 6 oven for about 30 minutes, or until it is cooked through, polished brown and crisp. Cut out and discard the backbone, then cleave the two halves, bones and all, into manageable sections. Stir-fry the greens in a drop of hot duck fat or oil for a few seconds, add about 4 tbsp water, stir through, then let splutter for about 30 seconds. Stir in 100 ml of the duck’s braising gravy and the cornflour mixture and bubble for about a minute. Serve the duck and greens and thick gravy on the rice, scattered with shredded spring onion.