|Red-Roast Duck With Baby Bok Choy|
Copyright Blue Ginger, 1999 Clarkson Potter
This spectacularly fragrant duck dish celebrates Chinese
red roasting and French confit making.
A red roast, which is in face a super braise, derives its
special character from the use of dark soy sauce (the source of the duck’s ‘red’
color), Shaoxing wine and rock sugar. The duck, red roasted until its meat is
velvet, ends up confitlike, but without the stewing in fat that preparation
entails. I’ve added baby bok choy and some chile heat to the duck, which
underline the dish’s Asian origins and ensure that people who eat it will be
very, very happy!
Beverage tip: Spicy, dried-cherry Shiraz/Syrah Australian
dry red wine
2 cups Shaoxing wine, or 1 cup dry sherry
1 cut dark soy sauce
3 cups soy sauce
4 cups water
1 large duck, about 6 pounds
2 boxes (about 3 pounds) rock sugar, or 2 cups dark brown
1 5-inch piece fresh ginger, cut into ¼-inch slices
1 whole head garlic, unpeeled and halved horizontally
2 bunches scallions, white parts sliced into 3-inch
lengths, green parts sliced
1/8 inch thick
2 star anise
4 Thai bird chiles
2 cinnamon sticks
8 baby bok choy, halved and cored
- In a large, deep pot, combine the wines, soy sauces, and
water. Bring to a boil over high heat and add the duck. If the liquid doesn’t
cover the duck, add more water. Bring to a boil again, then reduce the heat
and simmer, skimming the liquid until no more scum forms, about 30 minutes.
- Add the rock sugar, ginger, garlic, long scallion
pieces, star anise, chiles, and cinnamon sticks. Stir to dissolve the sugar
and taste the liquid for sweetness. It should be pleasantly sweet; if not
sweet enough, add more sugar. Place a second pot or stainless steel bowl
half-filled with water into the first to keep the duck submerged and simmer
until the duck is very tender and almost falling from the bone 2 ½ to 3
hours. Do not overcook or the meat will come apart. During the last 10 minutes
of cooking, add the bok choy.
- Using a large-mesh spoon, carefully remove the duck and
bok choy to a platter and cover with foil to keep warm Strain and skim the
stock, return it to the pot, and reduce it over high heat until lightly
syrupy, about 20 minutes.
- Transfer the duck to a serving platter and surround it
with the bok choy. Glaze the duck with the sauce, garnish it with the scallion
greens, and serve.