Wednesday, July 18, 2012

"Duck de Chine" or Beijing Duck?

No, it's not a spelling mistake, but the name of a top-level restaurant in Beijing serving Beijing duck but with innovative French cooking techniques, another kind of East-West fusion.

The front entrance has Chinese elements for sure...terracotta warriors, tiled roof, long life (bat) designs on the wall.

As soon as you go in, you feel the peaceful environment of a traditional courtyard.

 Everything is laid out ready for a refreshing cup of Chinese tea.

There are of course ducks all over the place...sitting in a row, head to head in the pattern of the floor tiles.... graceful mandarin ducks hanging on the wall..........
..or not looking so happy as they hang ready for roasting.
The restaurant chooses large meaty five pound ducks from near Beijing, and roasts a few hundred a day. With each duck costing USD 40, you can see there's quite a cashflow going through the place! The chef may look young but he's been at this job since he was 15 years old!
Note the traditional oven using date wood logs for firewood. 
Half way through, the duck has to be taken out and basted with special stock.
While all this is going on in the kitchen, the condiments and mixture of three sauces have been laid on the table.

We start off with some other dishes...walnuts, lamb and Chinese broccoli....

and finally the chef proudly brings out the golden coloured duck and starts slicing it in the traditional way, separating the crispy skin from the tender meat.
The meal is complete with thin pancakes and sesame buns. Absolutely yummy!
Bon Appetit! 

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