Duck pie with Chinese master stock

  • Starter
  • medium
  • Makes 10 pies
  • 1 hour 30 minutes, plus 14 hours if making your own duck confit



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  • 500g of plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 250g of lard
  • 200ml of water
  • 20g of sea salt


Master stock

To finish

This dish requires confit duck leg meat, which needs to be done at least a day in advance (you could also buy ready-confit duck legs to save time – if doing this, skip to step 3). Begin by liberally salting the duck legs with sea salt, then set aside in the fridge to lightly cure for 4 hours. After this time, wash off the salt and dry the legs with a cloth
Preheat an oven to 90°C. Place the duck legs in a large ovenproof casserole dish and pour over enough duck fat until they’re completely submerged. Place in the oven to gently confit for 10 hours
While the legs cook, prepare the pastry. Place the water and lard in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Place the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl, then pour the simmering water-lard mixture over the top. Knead for around 10 minutes (or use a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment) until a smooth dough forms, then cover and leave to rest for 30 minutes
  • 500g of plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 20g of sea salt
  • 250g of lard
  • 200ml of water
Once rested, divide the mixture into 10 balls, weighing 100g each. Wrap in cling film and set aside in the fridge
Leave the duck legs to cool in the duck fat, then lift the legs out and pick off all the meat, discarding the bones and skin (but reserving some of the fat). Mix a little of the duck fat back into the picked meat along with the coriander, 10g of salt, coriander seeds and chilli flakes until well combined, then press the mixture into a tray to create a sheet of duck meat around 1-inch thick. Place in the fridge to set, and take the chilled pastry out of the fridge to warm up slightly
Once set, divide the meat into 10 by either using a ring cutter to punch out pucks, or using a knife to cut the mixture into 10 equal squares and then using your hands to shape them into flat discs (you want to ensure each puck remains an inch thick)
Dust a work surface with flour and roll each ball of pastry out into a large circle. Place a puck of duck meat in the centre and wrap the pastry around it, creating an even, oval pie (you may need to trim away any excess pastry). Repeat this with the remaining pastry and duck until you have 10 even pies, then place them back in the fridge while you prepare the stock
Bring the Shaoxing wine, light soy, rock sugar and water to the boil in a large saucepan. Once boiling, add the spring onions, ginger, garlic, cinnamon and star anise, then simmer for 30 minutes
Strain the master stock through a fine sieve into a clean pan, then either keep warm or set aside to reheat before serving
Bring a small pan of salted water to the boil and add the finely diced celeriac. Simmer for a few minutes until tender, then drain and set aside
Now you have all the elements ready to finish the dish. Preheat an oven to 180°C/gas mark 4 and heat a generous amount of vegetable oil in a wide frying pan – you want the oil to be around 1cm deep
  • vegetable oil, for frying
Fry the pies in the vegetable oil until brown all over (you should see the pasty bubble up and crisp) – you will probably need to do this in batches. Once the pastry has browned and crisped up, transfer to the oven to continue cooking until hot in the centre (around 15 minutes). Meanwhile, gently reheat the master stock
To serve, place a pie in the centre of a bowl and pour over the master stock. Top with a generous sprinkling of the chopped chives and blanched celeriac
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