The Skinny on Peking Duck at Quanjude Roast Duck Restaurant

peking duck in China

Peking Duck at Quanjude Roast Duck Restaurant

Our last meal in Beijing concluded with Peking Duck at Quanjude Roast Duck Restaurant. It is rarely prepared at home because it is considered a celebratory meal. It is a famous dish that has been prepared in every corner of China since the imperial era and made a fitting meal to conclude our visit to China.

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chef-carving-duck The Skinny on Peking Duck at Quanjude Roast Duck Restaurant

Peking Duck in Beijing

Quanjude Roast Duck

After that first dinner, I enjoyed every meal, but I’ve always enjoyed family-style meals. It took a little getting used to the etiquette of the center turnstile. But once we did it added a few spills and thrills to our meals. Our guide also purchased cola and Sprite in addition to tea. And we never were able to finish everything that was placed in front of us.

Please don’t quote me on the spelling of this famous restaurant. It has been serving 400 different styles of roasted duck since 1864. The restaurant serves about 5 million hungry customers a year. Early recipes date back as early as 1330. It was initially reserved as a dish for the Imperial family. But Quanjude is making this delicious disk available to us regular folks, too.

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plate-of-carved-roasted-duck-in-Beijing The Skinny on Peking Duck at Quanjude Roast Duck Restaurant

How to Cook Peking Duck

Don’t Try This at Home

The fattened ducks are slaughtered, plucked, eviscerated, and rinsed thoroughly with water. Air is pumped under the skin through the neck cavity to separate the skin from the fat. The duck is then soaked in boiling water before it is hung up to dry.

The ducks are then roasted in uncovered ovens over non-smoky wood fuel made from Chinese dates, peaches, and pears which adds a subtle fruity flavor you can smell and taste.

While it is hanging, the duck is glazed with a layer of maltose syrup, and after 24 hours, the duck is roasted in an oven until it turns crisp and dark golden brown. The skin is to die for; trust me, this is an experience you don’t want to miss in Beijing.

dip-roasted-duck-in-sauce The Skinny on Peking Duck at Quanjude Roast Duck Restaurant

How to Eat Peking Duck

Peking duck is known worldwide for its thin, crisp skin. It is presented to diners and sliced and skinned at the table.

The thin slices of duck are folded into Chinese pancakes and served with a side of scallions, cucumber, and sweet bean or hoisin sauce. The crispy, delicious, fatty skin and boned meat are served separately.

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