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All your Chinese restaurant favourites for you to cook at home.

Rice Duck Pancakes Hoi Sin sauce Plum Sauce Cooks tips Home

Chinese Style Rice - slightly sticky, easier to pickup with chopsticks.

Rice. Plain boiled white rice.

Rinse rice with cold water, put in saucepan, cover with 20 mm of cold water. Boil vigorously until water has all but gone and steam holes are visible in the rice. Put lid on sauce pan and turn down heat to minimum. After 15 minutes, turn off heat completely, wait 5 minutes. Fluff gently with fork and serve.

This method works well with American long grain rice and Basmati. For brown rice I prefer the bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes approach. Don't bother with easy cook or boxed rice, it isn't any quicker and doesn't have the flavour.

Crispy Duck - always popular,

Crispy Duck. Two options, the long and the short, try them all.

The long method... Not telling you... buy a Chinese cook book, it takes 30 hours to prepare, involves immersing poor duck in boiling water, massaging with salt, sugar and soy sauce, blowing air between the skin and carcass through a straw and hanging up to dry for a day.

Alternatively ... preparation time 6 hours.. Clean duck, hang it up to dry thoroughly overnight in a draught. Dissolve 1 tablespoon of brown sugar and 1 teaspoon salt in warm water and massage duck all over with mixture. Hang it up to dry thoroughly once more. Roast the duck on the middle shelf of a preheated oven (Gas mark 6, or 200 degrees C) with a dish of water beneath to catch the fat for 1.25 hours. Carve duck at table with the skin and meat served in separate dishes.

The short method. Buy duck breast fillets, toss in mixture of 2 tablespoons corn flour and 1 teaspoon five spice powder. Prick skin all over with sharp knife and cook under slow grill (or oven) skin side up until fillets are cooked through, usually the skin is crisp at this point, if not raise heat to high and continue until skin is crispy.

Serve with Hoi Sin sauce, thinly sliced spring onions, cucumber and pancakes.


Pancakes. Don't even think about making the pancakes yourself, buy them from the supermarket. We burnt our fingers and they were not as attractive when we tried.

Hoi Sin sauce

Hoi Sin sauce. Equal quantities of smooth yellow bean sauce (not the TV brand), sugar, white wine vinegar, mixed together with a dash of chilli sauce (as you like it), crushed garlic (as you like it) and sesame seed oil.

Plum sauce

Plum sauce. Tinned plums, drained of natural juice and chopped or chopped fresh plums combined with 60 ml water or freshly squeezed orange juice, 1 tablespoon of rice vinegar and 55g of sugar in a saucepan. Heat until sugar is dissolved and simmer for 15 minutes or until plums are pulpy. Stir in 1 teaspoon of corn flour (optional) and extra water and stir until mixture boils and thickens slightly.