Mdam Ong's treasured family recipe for Hokkien Braised Duck was passed down by her mum. Find out her secrets to removing the duck's oil glands and why she never covers the wok.
Clean the duck thoroughly include all innards in the duck cavity (see tip 1). Then blanch the duck for a few minutes in a wok of boiling water.
Remove any remnant feathers. Rub all over with coarse salt, then rinse thoroughly.
Pat dry and rub each of the marinade ingredients all over the duck and in the duck cavity.
Tuck in the duck wings and webs, then marinate overnight (or at least for 1-2 hours).
Wash, peel and slice the ginger and blue ginger. Then wash and peel the garlic. Stuff the blue ginger and garlic into the cavity of the duck.
Peel and wash the garlic, then chop coarsely.
Remove the seeds from the chilli and rinse. Cut into small pieces and blend finely.
Place the chilli and garlic in a bowl. Then add in the vinegar and sugar and mix well.
Add the sugar to the wok and fry over low heat until it melts.
Once the sugar turns golden, quickly add in the 5-spice powder, star anise, cloves and cinnamon stick and fry for 30 seconds over low heat. Then add in the dark soy sauce.
Next, place the whole duck in the wok and coat it evenly with the soy sauce mixture.
Add in 1.5 litres of water until the water covers the duck to around three-quarter, and add in the rock sugar. Bring back to a boil over high heat.
Once boiling, turn the heat down to medium and braise the duck uncovered for 1.5 hours, turning the duck over mid-way. Turn the duck a few times towards the last 30 mins to ensure the bottom of the duck is not burnt as the sauce thickens.
Transfer the duck to a plate. Then use the same braising gravy to braise the tau kwa, tau pok and hard boiled eggs for about 30 minutes.
Chop up the duck and place on a serving dish, together with the tau kwa, tau pok and hard boiled eggs. Garnish with parsley, and serve with the chilli sauce and steamed rice.
Duck meat, if not properly prepared, can be very 'fowl' smelling. To get rid of the odour, you need to make sure that the duck is cleaned very thoroughly.