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    Recipes — dinners

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    Spicy Salt Duck

    Prep Time

        •    Cook time: 45 minutes
        •    Yield: Serves 8-10


        •    2 lemons

        •    1 large red chilli
        •    2-3 spring onions
        •    2 tbsps plain flour
        •    1 tsp chilli powder
        •    1/2 tsp ground cumin
        •    1/2 tsp ground ginger
        •    1/2 tsp ground fennel seeds
        •    700 ml vegetable oil , for deep-frying
        •    2 x 200 g duck breasts, skin on, trimmed of excess fat
        •    1/2 tsp sichuan seasoning, plus extra to serve (see tip)


    1. Arrange the duck breasts, skin-side up, on a heatproof plate that will fit inside a steamer basket. Place inside the steamer and position over a deep saucepan or wok of boiling water and steam, covered, for 12 minutes or until the duck is half cooked.

    2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the flour, chilli powder, cumin, fennel, sichuan seasoning (see tip), ginger and 3 teaspoons of sea salt.

    3. Remove the plate from the steamer, transfer the duck breasts to a wire rack and set aside for 25 minutes.

    4. Meanwhile, finely slice the chilli on the diagonal, then trim and julienne the spring onions. Halve the lemons.

    5. Toss the duck in the spicy flour mixture to coat well, shaking off any excess. In a wok, heat the oil until it shimmers slightly. Deep-fry the duck for about 2 minutes, or until just cooked through and lightly browned. Drain well on kitchen paper.

    6. Cut the duck on the diagonal into 1cm slices and arrange on a serving platter with a small bowl of sichuan seasoning.

    7. Garnish with the sliced chilli and spring onions, then serve immediately with the lemon halves for squeezing over the meat.

    TIP: Sichuan pepper with salt is a seasoning that crops up in many Chinese recipes. You can buy sichuan (or szechuan) pepper in Asian supermarkets, Waitrose and Ocado. To make sichuan pepper and salt seasoning, dry-roast 1 tablespoon of sichuan pepper and 3 tablespoons of sea salt in a heavy-based pan. When the peppercorns start to pop and become aromatic, remove from the heat and allow to cool. Once cool, grind to a powder in a pestle and mortar or spice grinder. Store in an airtight container. Makes 4 tablespoons.

    This great family recipe is thanks to Jamie Oliver Recipes at https://www.jamieoliver.com/recipes/duck-recipes/spicy-salt-duck/

    Lamb with Lemon & Dill

    Make a one-pot lamb meal for two with a citrus twist

    Prep Time

        •    Prep and cook time: 1 hour & 15 minutes
        •    Yield: Serves 2


        •    350g ready diced lamb
        •    2 tsps plain flour
        •    1 tbsp sunflower oil
        •    1 onion, chopped
        •    3 tbsps chopped fresh dill
        •    1 bay leaf
        •    300g salad potatoes, thickly sliced
        •    zest and juice of half a lemon
        •    2 tbsp crème fraîche (half fat is fine)
        •    300ml hot chicken or vegetable stock (a cube or powder is fine)


    1. Toss the lamb in the flour with a little salt and plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Heat the oil in a heavy-based pan, add the onion and fry for 5 mins until softened. Add the lamb and stir well until tinged brown.
    2. Stir in the stock, 2 tablespoons of the dill and the bay leaf. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 30 mins.
    3. Add the potatoes and lemon juice and cook for a further 30 mins until the potatoes are tender. Serve in soup plates or individual dishes with a spoonful of crème fraîche and a scattering of lemon zest and dill on each serving. Some crusty bread on the side will be useful for mopping up all the juices.

    This great family recipe is thanks to BBC Goodfood Recipes at https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/1522/lamb-with-lemon-and-dill

    Crispy Chinese Duck Breast

    The recipe teaches us how to make perfect crispy duck even when using a fattier cut of breast. Marinated in a flavorful sauce, the meat remains juicy and tender even if cook it medium or medium-well.

    I love using this recipe to cook for a crowd, because you can finish multiple duck breasts in the oven together and serve everything at the same time.

    Prep Time

        •    Prep time: 20 minutes
        •    Cook time: 40 minutes
        •    Yield: Serves 6


        •    4 pieces duck breast (12 ounces / 340 grams per piece)
        •    1/2 tsp salt


        •    1/4 cup hoisin sauce
        •    1/4 cup Shaoxing wine (or dry sherry)
        •    1/2 tsp five spice powder
        •    1 thumb ginger, sliced
        •    4 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped

    Serving option 1:

        •    1/4 cup plum sauce
        •    1/4 teaspoon salt
        •    1 sweet potato, spiralized to noodles or cut to thin slices with a julienne peeler
        •    2 zucchini, spiralized to noodles or cut to thin slices with a julienne peeler

    Serving option 2:

        •    1/4 cup sweet bean sauce (or hoisin sauce)
        •    1 cucumber, sliced to strips
        •    2 green onion, sliced to strips
    16 homemade Beijing duck pancakes (or store-bought pancakes)



    1. Combine all the marinade ingredients in a tall bowl (or small food processor) and chop with an immersion blender until it forms a runny paste. Pour into a 12-inch (30 cm) tray or baking dish.

    2. Pat the duck dry with paper towels. Place in the tray with the marinade, skin side up. Sprinkle salt on the skin. Marinate in room temperature for 30 minutes up to 1 hour, or uncovered in the fridge for a couple hours to overnight. In this case, bring the duck to your kitchen counter for at least 20 minutes before cooking, so it will return to room temperature.

    Cooking Duck:

    1. Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C).

    2. Right before cooking, pat the duck dry with paper towels. Score the skin 1/2-inch (1 cm) apart to a diamond pattern (but careful not to score the meat).

    3. You might need to cook the duck in two batches. Place the breast pieces in a cold ovenproof 12-inch heavy skillet, skin-side down. Cook over medium heat, until they’re gently sizzling. Turn to medium-low heat. Cook until the skin turns golden brown, for another 10 to 12 minutes. Flip them over every 3 to 4 minutes. If the duck skin cooks too fast, turn to low heat. Transfer the cooked duck onto a plate and cook the rest using the same method.

    4. Arrange all the duck pieces in the pan, skin- side down. Transfer the skillet into the oven and bake for 8 minutes, until the skin turns dark brown. Flip to skin-side up and bake for another 6 to 8 minutes, until the skin turns dark brown but not burnt. Transfer the duck onto a big plate, skin-side up. Allow to rest for 10 minutes without cover before carving.

    5. Prepare the sides while resting the duck.

    6. If you plan to serve the duck later, wrap each duck breast with aluminum foil when they are warm enough to handle and seal in a bag. Store in the fridge for up to 3 days. When you’re ready to serve, warm them up in a preheated 300°F (150°C) oven for 10 minutes.

    Serving option 1 - Easy Weekday Dinner:

        •    Transfer 1 tablespoon rendered duck fat into a large skillet. Cook the sweet potato first over medium heat until it’s tender. Then add the zucchini and sprinkle with salt. Cook until the zucchini just turns tender and the sweet potato is almost caramelized. Transfer the ‘noodles’ to serving plates.

        •    Slice the duck into thin slices and place on top of the vegetables, with plum sauce on the side.

        •    Enjoy hot as a main dish.

    Serving option 2 - Fancy Peking Duck Rolls:

        •    To serve Peking duck style, steam the pancakes in a bamboo steamer for 3 to 5 minutes until hot.

        •    Slice the duck and place them on a plate. Serve with hot pancakes, sweet bean sauce (or hoisin sauce), cucumber and green onions on the side.

        •    To assemble – place one pancake in the palm of your hand, brush some sauce on the pancake, place 2 to 3 slices duck in the center, top with a few strips of green onions and cucumber. Roll and tuck the pancake like a mini burrito. Repeat, and enjoy hot as a main dish.

    This great family recipe is thanks to Omnivore's Cookbook Recipes at https://omnivorescookbook.com/crispy-chinese-duck-breast/

    Korean-Style Lamb Mini Roasts with Pear Salad

    Prep Time

        •    Prep time: 20 minutes
        •    Cook time: 30 minutes
        •    Yield: Serves 4


        •    2 lamb mini roasts (about 250g each)
        •    4 cm piece ginger, finely grated
        •    ¼ cup roughly chopped coriander
        •    2 tbsps sesame seeds, toasted
        •    2 tsps sesame oil
        •    1 tbsp salt reduce tamari or soy sauce
        •    1 tbsp mirin
        •    1 small green pear, coarsely grated
        •    Chargrilled pumpkin, to serve

    Green Pear Salad:

        •    3 baby red radishes, thinly sliced
        •    1 green pear, thinly sliced
        •    1 red onion, thinly sliced
        •    1 cup shredded wombok
        •    ½ cup mint & coriander leaves
        •    75g (½ cup) roasted cashews, roughly chopped
        •    1-2 limes, halved, plus extra wedges, to serve
        •    Extra Sesame oil, to serve


    1. Preheat oven to 200°C (180° fan-forced). Place ginger, coriander root, sesame seeds, sesame oil, tamari, mirin and pear in a small food processor; process until chopped and combined. Coat the lamb mini roasts with the Bulgogi marinade; season to taste. Place on a wire rack over an oven tray; roast for 25 to 30 minutes for medium or until cooked to your liking. Alternatively, if time permits, coat lamb and marinate for 3-4 hours or overnight.

    2. Meanwhile, place radishes, pear, onion, wombok, herbs and cashews in a large bowl, squeeze over lime juice and drizzle with extra sesame oil; season to taste and toss to combine.

    3. Remove lamb mini roasts from oven, cover loosely with foil and stand for 10 minutes before carving, to serve.

    4. Divide salad among plates and top with sliced Lamb Bulgogi. Serve with extra lime wedges and roasted sweet potato.


    1. Bulgogi, which translates to ‘fire meat’ … is a Korean dish that usually consists of grilled marinated beef. In this recipe we add our own little modern twist to the traditional Korean marinade and turn it into a paste and use lamb mini roasts instead of beef; a nice cultural change to a Sunday roast.

    2. The pear in the Bulgogi marinade will tenderise your lamb the longer you leave it marinade for.

    3. If time permits, marinade you lamb for 3-4 hours or overnight.

    This great family recipe is thanks to Australian Lamb Recipes at https://www.australianlamb.com.au/recipes/korean-style-lamb-mini-roasts-with-green-pear-salad/#

    Barramundi with Pineapple, Chilli and Mint Salsa

    Dress barramundi with this lovely tropical salsa.

    Prep Time

        •    Prep time: 5 minutes
        •    Cook time: 25 minutes
        •    Yield: Serves 4


        •    3 tbsps orange juice
        •    2 tbsps lime juice, or lemon juice
        •    1 garlic clove, grated
        •    1 mild red chilli, finely sliced
        •    2 tbsps sweet chilli sauce
        •    2 tbsps olive oil
        •    Sea salt and pepper
        •    1 red onion, halved and finely sliced
        •    2 tomatoes, diced
        •    1 red capsicum
        •    300g fresh pineapple, peeled
        •    1/2 an avocado
        •    1 cup mint leaves, chopped or torn
        •    4 fresh barramundi fillets
        •    1 tbsp vegetable oil
        •    1 lime or lemon, cut into wedges


    1. To make salsa, whisk orange juice, lime or lemon juice, garlic, chilli, sweet chilli sauce, olive oil, sea salt and pepper. Add red onion and tomatoes and set aside while you prepare remaining ingredients.
    2. Cut cheeks from red capsicum and dice flesh. Dice pineapple and avocado. Add red capsicum, pineapple, avocado and mint to salsa and toss lightly.
    3. Season fish well. Heat vegetable oil in a pan and cook fish skin-side down until nearly cooked through, then turn and finish cooking lightly on the other side. Serve with tropical salsa and lime for squeezing.
    4. Serve with steamed rice, or add half a cup of coconut milk to the rice before cooking for an even more tropical note.

    This great family recipe is thanks to good food Recipes at https://www.goodfood.com.au/recipes/barramundi-with-pineapple-chilli-and-mint-salsa-20120221-29u2k