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Peking duck


  • 1 2-1/2 - 3 kilogram whole duck
  • 21 grams Chinese five-spice powder
  • 4 tablespoons (60 milliliters) salt
  • 2 tablespoons (30 milliliters) sugar
  • 2 tablespoons (30 milliliters), baking soda
  • 5-1/4 cups (1-1/2 liters) water
  • 2 tablespoons (30 milliliters) Shaoxing wine
  • 3/4 cup (80 milliliters) maltose (malt syrup/rice syrup)
  • 2 tablespoons (30 milliliters) soy sauce
  • Water for boiling

Special equipment:

  • Bicycle pump
  • Meat hook
  • Smoking gun
  • Sorghum straw, can substitute with Wood chips
  • Large plastic vacuum bag

To serve:

  • Cucumbers, sliced (optional)
  • Bao buns (optional)
  • Thin crepes (optional)
  • Hoisin sauce (optional)
  • Scallions, chopped (optional)


  1. Place the end of the bicycle pump under the skin, entering from the belly and back of the duck.
  2. Slowly begin pumping air under the skin of the duck to separate the skin from the flesh.
  3. With a knife, remove the wings tips and feet from the duck at the second joint.
  4. Use a skewer to elevate the remaining part of the wings from the body to ensure air flow across the skin.
  5. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  6. Holding the duck over the pot from the hook, ladle the boiling water over the skin of the duck until the skin tightens up and slightly changes in colour.
  7. Rub the skin of the duck with baking soda and half of the salt.
  8. In a bowl, combine five spice, Shaoxing wine, sugar, and the remaining half of the salt, to make seasoning paste.
  9. Season the meat of the duck under the skin and in the cavity with the seasoning paste while keeping the skin clean.
  10. Combine maltose with soy sauce in a double boiler over medium heat, simmer to incorporate.
  11. Brush maltose-soy mixture over exterior of the duck.
  12. Seal the cavity of the duck by weaving in a skewer.
  13. Hang the duck in a refrigerator for 72 hours to dry.
  14. Place dried duck into a large, sealable plastic bag.
  15. Using a smoking gun and sorghum straw, use the smoke to inflate the bag with the duck inside, then seal the bag and allow the smoke to infuse for one hour.
  16. Preheat oven to 300 F (150C).
  17. Remove duck from smoking bag.
  18. Using hooks, hang duck in the oven, roast for one hour and fifteen minutes, brushing with remaining maltose mixture.
  19. Remove the duck from the oven.
  20. Preheat frying oil to 350 F (175C).
  21. Holding the duck over the pot from the hook, ladle the oil over the skin of the duck, until crispy. Once duck is crispy, place breast side down, on a rack over a roasting tray to drain.
  22. While still warm, remove the skin from the duck to prevent steaming and softening.

To serve:

  1. Chop the meat of the cooked duck and serve with the skin, cucumber, bao buns, thin crepes, hoisin sauce, scallions.

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