For the end of the Chinese New Year festivities, I wanted to go fancy and ridiculous, so I veganised Crispy Skin Duck with Blood Plum Sauce from Kylie Kwong's heart and soul book. It was so good. SO GOOD.
I especially wanted to go duck because CNY isn't the same without duck. When I went home for the first night of CNY this year, my fam and all the meat-eating family friends got to eat duck, and I don't want to miss out on that luck! (In CNY symbolism, duck means fidelity, but also duck in Australia is expensive so sometimes it's wealth via showing off)
I made a bunch of modifications, mostly because a) the shape of vegan cake, and b) I couldn't find blood plums anywhere that day. But I will definitely be making this again and again and again. I want to try it with a bit less liquid and turned into duck pancakes, and I want to eat it on its own, just like this again.
Also at this party: Cindy and Michael made lo bak go and peanut cookies.
a vegan duck (i used a 800g one from the cruelty free shop)
1 tablespoon sichuan peppercorns
2 tablespoons salt
a bunch of plain flour
1 cup water
1 cup white sugar
250g ripe blood plums (I used oranges - kylie says the order is blood plums, blood oranges, oranges)
2/3 cup fish sauce (I use Vincent's vegan fish sauce) (I would use less of this next time - too liquidy)
6 whole star anise
2 cinnamon quills
juice of 2 squished limes
what to do
Grind together sichuan peppers and salt until it becomes a 麻辣 salt. Rub the salt into the duck, and leave to marinade in it for a few hours.
Bring water and sugar to the boil, reduce to simmer for five minutes. After it's reduced a little, add plums/oranges (quartered if plums, eighths if oranges), fish sauce, and spices and simmer for a few more minutes. Kylie says just to simmer for one minute but I wanted to reduce it a little more. Stir through the lime juice and take the whole thing off the heat.
Slice your duckie into fingers, and toss in flour. Heat vegetable oil in wok until a clean chopstick pressed to the bottom starts to bubble. (This is a family trick to tell if the oil is hot enough) Deep fry a few pieces at a time until they're crispy and looking good, then drain a little. Arrange prettily and spoon the sauce over it. Don't through it over in an ugly mess because you're in a hurry, as I was.