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Peking Duck Confit

This Peking Duck Confit recipe is from Johnny Zhu, Chef de Cuisine at Veil in Seattle.


6 Moulard duck legs
½ gallon duck fat (any cooking oil will also work)
1 tablespoon star anise
1 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon cloves
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1 head of garlic (split)
Salt (to taste)
6 to 8 mini folded bao buns

All bones from duck legs
2 large onions (sliced)
1 garlic clove (minced)
1 gallon chicken stock

3 red radishes (quartered)
1 English cucumber (thinly sliced)
1 pint sugar
1 pint rice vinegar
1 pint water
1 tablespoon allspice
1 teaspoon chili flakes


Generally season the duck legs and place them in a pot with plenty of room. Add spices and garlic. Cover the legs in duck fat. Bake for 6 hours at 250 degrees Fahrenheit with lid on the pot. Let duck cool then pick the meat, reserving the bones.

Caramelize onions and reserve half. Add garlic to half of the onions and sweat (with lid on pot, cook slowly over low heat to soften garlic). Add bones and chicken stock and bring to a simmer. Reduce to at least one third of original volume. Strain jus to remove bones and mirepoix.

Clean and quarter radishes. Bring remaining ingredients to a boil in a pot and pour half of the brine over the radishes. Let radishes cool and pickle for at least 6 hours in the refrigerator. Repeat with cucumber slices and remaining liquid.

Simmer duck meat with the duck jus until mixture is thick and viscous. Add reserved caramelized onions to the mixture and season to taste. Steam 6 to 8 mini folded bao buns until tender. Fill bao buns with duck confit and serve with fresh pickles. Serves 6 to 8.