Braised Duck with Coconut Juice

Vịt Kho Dùa

Preparation info

  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in

Little Saigon Cookbook: Vietnamese Cuisine And Culture In Southern California's Little Saigon

Little Saigon Cookbook

By Ann Le

Published 2011

  • About

This is a great dish to introduce to your friends who are having duck for the first time. Though this recipe is similar to the braised chicken dish, duck is a much more succulent and savory meat. With the five-spice powder flavoring and perfuming the duck, you end up with a particularly decadent meal with a delicious, caramelized coconut sauce.


  • 1½ to 2 pounds skinless duck thighs and legs
  • 2 tablespoons five-spice powder
  • 4 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 scallions, sliced into rings
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 1 fresh Thai bird chile, chopped into rings
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 cups coconut juice or coconut soda such as Coco Rico
  • Fresh cilantro


    1. In a shallow dish or on a baking sheet, arrange the duck thighs and legs and sprinkle five-spice powder over them.
    2. In a small bowl, combine the garlic, fish sauce, pepper, scallions, oil, the ginger, and chile.
    3. In a clay pot or saucepan, caramelize the sugar until brown. Add the duck and toss in and cover with the caramel.
    4. Pour the fish sauce mixture into the pot and gently stir so that it covers all the meat. Add ½ cup coconut juice or soda to the pot, stir, and bring to a boil. Let boil for 15 minutes, then lower the heat to a simmer. As the sauce reduces, add the remaining coconut juice or soda and continue simmering for another 2 hours. For the final product, the sauce should be thick and the duck meat falling off the bone when you serve it.
    5. Serve the duck directly from the clay pot, family-style, with hot steamed rice. Drizzle the sauce over the rice for an even better taste. Garnish with the fresh cilantro and additional black pepper.