Pipa duck pancakes 1 Pipa duck pancakes Andrew Wong
You need to start this a day ahead. Serves 6 whole duck 2-3kg hoisin sauce 5 tbsp For the maltose liquid water 1.5 litres Shaoxing rice wine 2 tbsp Chinese red vinegar 2 tbsp maltose 3 tbsp To serve Chinese pancakes 12, steamed spring onions 1 bunch, finely sliced cucumber 1, finely sliced plum sauce Directions On day one, spatchcock the duck. Cut the backbone of the duck out, open up the bird and place breast side up and, with the heel of your hand, apply pressure to the breastbone to crack, so the bird lies flat.
Bring a large pan of water to a rolling boil. With the duck held over the pan, use a large ladle or a small saucepan to pour the boiling water all over the skin of the duck, letting the water fall back into the pan.
Continue pouring the water over the duck until every inch of skin has had a good dousing – you will see the skin tighten up and change colour slightly.
Rub the hoisin sauce inside the duck and leave the bird on a wire rack for 30 minutes.
For the maltose liquid, bring all the ingredients to the boil in a large pan. Pour the boiling syrup repeatedly over the skin of the duck, as you did with the boiling water previously, until every part of the skin has been covered.
Leave the duck to rest on the wire rack overnight in a cool, dry place, placing an electric fan in front of the bird to accelerate the process if you wish. It is also OK to leave it in the fridge.
On day two, check the duck to see if it is ready for roasting – the skin should be completely dry to the touch. If so, preheat the oven to 120C/gas mark ½. Still on the wire rack, place in the middle of the oven for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, turn up the oven to 200C/gas mark 6, and roast for a further 15 minutes with the oven door very slightly ajar to allow any condensation to escape. The drying and salting process beforehand means you need no more cooking than that.
Serve immediately and carve at the table, thinly sliced or hacked, depending on your knife skills. Enjoy with steamed pancakes (steam according to packet instructions) and other accompaniments.
Food styling Kim Morphew Prop styling Pene Parker