4 great roast duck dishes to try in Dubai
You may think of duck as an exotic, slightly rarefied type of poultry. That’s certainly its association, but people were roasting it regularly long before chicken. The Chinese first domesticated the aquatic bird some 4,000 years ago, the Egyptians then followed and the rest of the world eventually caught on, too. As a result, there are famous and much revered duck dishes representing cuisines from around the world. From France, we get duck confit and, most famous of all, duck á l’orange. In Britain, there’s the famed duck roast. Americans stuff their turkey with duck in the festive (and very oddly named) “turducken”. But many palates are more in love with the Peking duck from Beijing.
If you’re a duck newbie, be aware that its meat is darker, fattier and far richer than chicken or turkey. Start small and possibly give dessert a skip. However you like your flavourful fowl – shredded, crispy, angry, done traditionally or with a fresh twist – you’ll find it on local menus. Here are four to try.
Bing’s Peking Duck at Maiden Shanghai
When a dish is named after the restaurant’s chef, you know it’s a goodie. This traditional dish gets its name from Luo Bing, once the head chef of Hutong in London who now heads up this modern Chinese restaurant at the FIVE Palm Jumeirah. Again, you can expect fresh homemade pancakes with sliced cucumber and spring onions on the side – the Peking way to play with your poultry.
Where: Maiden Shanghai, FIVE Palm Jumeirah
Contact: +971 4 247 5222, website
Waffle All’Anatra at Via Veneto
Who says you can’t have a duck dish for breakfast? Here, duck confit is served on a savoury waffle, with caramelised apple mostarda on the side and a fried egg on top. Rich duck meat goes really well with something fruity and sweet, so this indulgent combo from the Italian bar and kitchen in Downtown Dubai is great.
Where: Via Veneto, Downtown Dubai
Contact: +971 4 2427882, website
Peking Duck Pancakes at Hakkasan
At this swanky Cantonese place, mini square pancakes are served for you to finish with slices of decadent slow-cooked duck, vegetable garnish and a black bean or ginger and spring onion sauce. There’s the whole duck option (16 pancakes), the half duck (eight pancakes), and even one topped with Beluga caviar.
Where: Hakkasan, Jumeirah Emirates Towers
Contact: +971 4 384 8484, website
Five-Spice Shredded Duck at Trader Vic’s
This dish is one of the main draws in this Madinat Jumeirah restaurant. The duck in the “favourites” section of the menu is done crispy style after being marinated in Chinese five spice. The meat is elegantly served with scallions, cucumber, hoisin sauce and mu shu pancakes steamed the authentic way.
Where: Trader Vic’s, Souk Madinat Jumeirah
Contact: +971 4 368 6559, website