"If you’ve never tried smoking anything, you will see it’s very simple and delicious. Of course, using duck and orange is a classic idea but I’ve put a modern Southeast Asian spin on this with the dressing, then combined it with pickled radishes, raw grated beets and fresh orange segments to offset the richness of the meat. This serves two as a main course or four as a starter." Poh Ling Yeow, Poh & Co. 2 






Skill level

Average: 3.4 (41 votes)


Pickled radishes

  • 1 bunch radishes, tops discarded, quartered
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 125 ml (½ cup) white vinegar
  • 110 g (½ cup) caster sugar



  • 2 duck breast fillets (about 220 g each), skin on
  • 2 tbsp Shaoxing rice wine
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • ½ tsp grated ginger
  • 2 beetroot or 1 carrot, cut into julienne or roughly grated
  • ½ cup mint leaves
  • ½ cup coriander leaves
  • 2 oranges, cut into segments


Smoking mixture

  • ⅓ cup black tea leaves
  • 55 g (¼ cup) brown sugar
  • 2 star anise, roughly crushed
  • 1 cinnamon stick, roughly crushed
  • few wide strips of orange rind


Sichuan salt

  • 1 tbsp Sichuan pepper
  • 2½ tsp salt


Orange sauce

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 spring onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2–3 cm piece ginger, finely shredded
  • 2 tbsp Shaoxing rice wine
  • 180 ml (¾ cup) freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 star anise
  • 55 g (¼ cup) caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • sesame oil, for drizzling
  • 1 fresh long red chilli, sliced
  • 1 tbsp finely grated orange zest
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


You will need to start the pickled radishes two days in advance of serving.

Resting time 30 minutes - 1 hour

Marinating time 3 hours

To make the pickled radish, place the radishes in a colander and toss the salt through. Place the colander on a plate to collect the juices so they can be discarded easily, then cover and refrigerate overnight. Place the vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Leave to cool completely before using. Transfer the radishes to a clean tea towel and pat to absorb any excess moisture. 

Transfer to a jar and top with the cooled pickling liquid. Seal and leave in a cool, dry place overnight.

To prepare the duck, score a criss-cross pattern (1 cm apart) on the duck skin, taking care not to cut through to the fat. Transfer the duck to a Snaplock bag. Combine the Shaoxing, soy sauce, sesame oil and ginger in a small bowl, then pour into the Snaplock bag with the duck. Push all the air out of the bag, then seal and leave to marinate in the refrigerator overnight or for a minimum of 3 hours.

To make the Sichuan salt, dry-toast the Sichuan pepper and salt in a small frying pan over low–medium heat for 30 seconds or until fragrant; the pepper will make a popping sound. Immediately remove from the heat. Using a mortar and pestle, roughly pound the Sichuan pepper and salt and set aside.

Pat the duck dry with paper towel, then rub well with the Sichuan salt. Leave to rest for 30 minutes– 1 hour.

Heat the oil in a heavy-based frying pan over low–medium heat. Add the duck breasts, skin-side down, and cook for 3–4 minutes or until the skin is dark golden but the flesh not cooked.

To make the smoking mixture, mix the tea leaves, brown sugar, star anise, cinnamon and orange rind in a small bowl.

Line a wok with a double layer of foil large enough to leave a surrounding overhang of about 4 cm. Spread the smoking mixture around the base of the wok to cover, then place the duck on a wire rack that sits about 4 cm above the smoking mixture. Heat the wok over high heat, then watch closely for the first wisp of smoke. Immediately cover the wok with the lid, then fold the foil around to seal the edge. Reduce the heat to medium and smoke the duck for 10 minutes.  

Transfer to a plate, cover loosely with foil and leave to rest for 5 minutes. Cut into thin slices on the diagonal.

To make the orange sauce, heat the oil in a small deep frying pan over medium heat, then add the spring onion, garlic and ginger and cook for 1 minute or until fragrant and golden. Add the Shaoxing, orange juice, cinnamon stick, star anise, sugar, fish sauce and a few drops of sesame oil and bring to a simmer, then simmer for 1 minute. Stir in the chilli, orange zest and vinegar and bring back to a simmer.

Set aside. Discard the cinnamon stick and star anise before serving.

To serve, place a bed of the beetroot or carrot on each plate. Place the duck on top, then spoon the sauce over. Arrange the pickled radish and orange segments around the duck, then scatter with the coriander and mint. 

Serve at room temperature or cold.



• This serves two as a main course or four as a starter. 


Photography, styling and food preparation by china squirrel.

Poh & Co. 2 Thursdays at 8.30pm on SBS.


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