Sunday, 27 September 2009

Duck soup

I know Mum misses my cooking. I made her some chicken stew for dinner one evening I was there and she loved it so much, she wanted me to teach her maid how to cook it.

My cooking style is simple really. Using commonsense and experience, one can easily coax beautiful flavours out of fresh ingredients. When it comes to making soups, I like to brown onions and meat with a dash of olive oil until lightly caramalised before adding in stock or water. It definitely tastes better than dumping everything into a pot of water to boil.

Today, I suddenly developed a craving for a dish I grew up eating. For some reason, Chinese Teochews love eating duck. I miss my late-grandma's braised duck and I remember drinking duck soup on rainy nights.

The weather's probably too hot for one to think of the hearty kiam chye duck soup but I went to the supermarket anyway to get a fresh duck and kiam chye (salted vegetables). I couldn't find any in the poultry section but I was so determined to make the dish that I bought a frozen duck from Taiwan which costs twice as much.

After thawing out the duck (a huge one by the way), I chopped it into quarters before popping it into the oven for about 20 minutes. The heat helps to remove the layer of fat beneath the skin.

When the pot of water started to boil, I added the duck pieces, kiam chye, ginger, sour plums, fresh tomatoes, an onion and a clove of garlic. I left the pot of soup to simmer for two hours until the meat is tender. For seasoning, I added in a splash of chinese wine (some people use brandy), a small piece of rock sugar and some pepper.

It's still boiling on the stove and the house is filled with a lovely smell. I'm sure my mum and the rest of the family will love the dinner surprise.

17 comments:

k@Ye_ said...

Ting, i also love this soup! It whets the appetite!! I remember my mum using the roasted duck bones to cook it too!

Fresh Fry aka 福星 said...

OMG. DROOL ~ ~ ~

singaporegirl said...

BT, while I see eye 2 eye with you on many things, where duck is concerned, I've to "duck"... the meat is so strong in taste and so coarse, I can't ever face it -- along with lamb, beef, venison, pigeon etc

EE said...

In my family, our togetherness and love was so connected to food that it’s hard to choose just one memory. Your duck dish certainly makes a heart-wamming centerpiece!

The Real Mother Hen said...

Ohh I love kiam chye duck, and your soup is making me drool :)

The World According To Me said...

I love your cooking pictures. You may see some of mine soon!

petunialee said...

Yummy! Yummy! I think I'll make that. You're such a talented person Ting.

Blur Ting said...

Kaye - Roasted duck bones? That I must try!

Blur Ting said...

Fry - I guess your mum doesn't make this at home?

Blur Ting said...

Auntie Lucia - I'm very particular when it comes to eating duck too. I hardly eat the ones sold at the food centres because the meat is too coarse but the ones braised at home over many hours can be so fragrant and tender. Like you, I dislike beef, lamb and many other kinds of meat.

Blur Ting said...

EE - It's lovely when a family gathers to enjoy a meal together, whether it is a simple or elaborate one. I like to make the eight treasure duck on special occasions. It makes a great centrepiece but it takes a lot of effort to prepare.

Blur Ting said...

MH - You know what? When I was cooking this soup, I kept telling myself you should be here to enjoy it cos I know how much you love this!

Blur Ting said...

World - You've moved out to live on your own again! I'm looking forward to seeing lots of yummy home cooked meals!

Blur Ting said...

Petunia - This soup is easy to put together. I'm not talented in the kitchen but I cook out of necessity. I've to vary the menu from time to time or it gets too boring. But I make sure the dishes don't take me hours to prepare. I like to be in and out of the kitchen quickly.

Fresh Fry aka 福星 said...

u're right, Ting. tis is 1 of those (many) dishes i can only cook on my own when i move out. Dowager Mom said this is too "hong" ("windy") but she don't know the right way to cook it lah. as usual.

T__T

Open Kitchen Concept said...

Oh Ting, I want to make this duck too.. can I just ask some silly questions.. 1. Is the ginger blue ginger or just old ginger.. 2. The pepper.. is it just normal ground pepper or pepper seeds? :) I'm going to make this.. I've never made duck...

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