Hoisin Lacquered Duck Legs with Asian Slaw
Hoisin lacquered duck legs with Asian slaw is a richly satisfying main that’s perfect for a busy evening. Marinate the duck the night before and simply pop it in the oven an hour before dinner. The slaw comes together in mere minutes!
Most of us associate duck legs with duck à la orange or duck confit. However, they’re also perfect for an easy weeknight roast or braise.
In this Chinese-inspired recipe, the lacquered duck legs marinate in a rich, spicy hoisin sauce, which can easily be prepped the night before. Then, it’s oven baked while you toss together the quick sweet and sour Asian slaw. The tangy slaw balances the richness of the duck legs and adds a welcome crunch.
This is a perfect recipe for easy, elegant entertaining. Prep the slaw right before your guests arrive and pop it in the fridge. (It’s better when it has rested for an hour or so anyway.) Then drain off any excess liquid (if necessary) and put it on a serving platter while your duck legs are resting. A seriously easy meal that’s guaranteed to impress!
About This Recipe
This is a very simple, fuss-free recipe. If you use pre-shredded cabbage from the supermarket, it takes mere minutes of hands-on effort.
However, when cooking duck legs, they should never be pink. Ovens vary, and so do ducks. Obviously, larger legs may take longer to cook than smaller ones. So, I strongly recommend checking your legs carefully the first time around before removing them from the oven. The internal temperature of the legs should register 74º C (165º F) when they’re fully cooked.
Must I Use Chillies?
You don’t have to add the chilies. However, they definitely add a bit of welcome zing to the final dish. If you’re just a little chilli-shy, scrape out the seeds before chopping them. Most of the heat is in the seeds and membranes of the peppers. So, this will tame them. Otherwise, you can leave them out altogether. There’s plenty of flavour in the dish without the chillies.
Why Add Alcohol?
While you don’t have to add the dry sherry or Chinese cooking wine to the marinade, it definitely adds another layer of complexity to the dish. If you’re concerned about the alcohol content, rest assured it will bake off in the oven, simply leaving the flavour behind.
Can I Cook Lacquered Duck Legs on the Grill?
Absolutely! This recipe is brilliant for outdoor cooking. Set your grill up for cooking over indirect heat and set a drip pan under the duck. Heat your grill to 200º C (390º F). Grill, skin side down for the first 20 minutes. Then, flip, and grill for about 25 more minutes. Test with an instant read thermometer to ensure the internal temperature of the legs has reached 74º C (165º F). It’s as simple as that!
I hope your family enjoys this deliciously simple duck recipe every bit as much as mine does. Bon appétit!
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