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Feb 10, 2009 06:36 AM

Peking Duck

I've never tried this dish before and have now decided I need to, but require an education first. If done 2 ways (with soup at the end), among how many average eaters may this meal be reasonably shared?

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  1. I'd guess at 4. I've eaten half a crispy shredded duck before (meant for 2), but that was without the legs. Also, it depends on the size in the first place. I'd say 4 should need a big one.

    What 2 ways did you mean?

    5 Replies
    1. re: Soop

      First way the Duck is Served with Chinese Pancakes, Hoisin Sauce and Scallions. Second way as soup. I have 2 friends in mind to take along and I imagine that there would be 1 or 2 apps ordered as well. So I'd be looking a 3 people sharing the duck.

      I saw a Travel Channel pgm over the weekend and they did a spot on this. I was under the impression that the ducks are a standard weight as traditionally, the "chef" determines doneness by appearance and the weight "feel" (no mechanical scale is used) of the roasted duck. (The duck is removed from the oven with a long pole and weight assessed) I'm sure that here in the states, an instant read themometer is used, but even so, I would imagine that a standard size of duck is generally used ?

      1. re: CocoaNut

        I have a feeling the "2 ways" must vary by restaurant. The first way (both times I had it) was with pancakes as you describe it. The second way was stir fried with peppers and other vegetables. It was excellent, but can't tell you a thing about the soup. We shared among 3 to 4 people and it was plenty. Can't recall if we had appetizers, too.

        1. re: kattyeyes

          And there is the 3 ways as done at King Fung.

        2. re: CocoaNut

          Oh, I thought you were making it. I don't know if they're bred to a standard weight.

          Interesting putting peking duck in a soup; I'd have assumed that they'd just use regular duck, as peking duck is quite labor intensive to roast as it is

          *edit* Aha!

          "But it is not necessary to order extra soup, for the duck-bone soup is always included in your order. It will be served as the rear dish for the dinner."

          1. re: CocoaNut

            Thanks for the input. Interesting article. The TVpgm didn't cover the part about the birds being pent up. Yikes!

            I have found 2 places in the Dallas area that do Peking Duck with the soup as the second way. One of the places does the third way as a stir-fry - of course, more $$$.

        3. Often it's only the skin wrapped in the pancakes (or buns) so it's really rich. I like the meat in there as well, and generally have the meat cut up and served. I've never had a soup made from the peking duck. Generally the duck is part of a larger meal - instead of apps, I'd order a couple other dishes like some noodles and a veggie or seafood dish.

          Keep in mind that some restos require a pre-order for peking duck a day or so in advance.

          1 Reply
          1. re: akq

            I've typically had the soup afterwards with the Peking duck. It's basically just the boney parts of the duck with tofu and bok choy. It comes out extremely rich and luxurious. Usually they will bring out the soup and then a plate of all the ingredients they cooked the soup with seperately. So you get a bowl of just the broth, and then you can put the bok choy, tofu, or duck parts you want into the bowl.

            I prefer the soup to the stir fry, personally.

            Oh, and it's common to get steamed buns instead of crepes at many(especially Taiwanese) restaurants.

          2. That's interesting. Most places in Vancouver, you order 2 courses, you get the skin with the pancakes and then they take the meat and dice it with vegetables and you get it to make lettuce wraps. Order 3 and you get the bones put into soup with tofu and gai choy.
            I'd say that you'd feed about 4 people quite well from one whole duck assuming you don't order anything else but you don't get any vegetables really if you just order peking duck. I'd throw in an extra dish or two just for some variety, nothing wrong with taking home leftovers!

            1. It's interesting how different restaurants have "interpreted" service of the duck. On the tv program, which was filmed in Bejing, they portrayed the duck meat being part of the pancake course. But did not continue to show the 2nd and 3rd way - that, I didn't find until googling local restaurants, followed by your posts.

              Thanks for all of the helpful tips on ordering and calling ahead. One of the local restaurant's online menu actually states to call the day before. It would be sad to be all excited and show up, only to be told "you should have called yesterday".

              I look forward to trying this new (for me) treat.

              2 Replies
              1. re: CocoaNut

                Blimey, yes I forgot to mention that. I heard once, that if the restaurant offers peking duck without the 24 hours notice, it's probably not going to be that good.

                I've never tried it myself, but I love duck, so I hope you enjoy it - if you'd be so kind, perhaps you can report back to us?

                1. re: Soop

                  You bet! I'd like to go this weekend, but it'll probably be a few weeks out.