I love noodle soups and I love duck – so what better solution for a (relatively) speedy dinner than a spicy pho-style noodle soup with duck? Okay, you could make it even quicker to get onto the table by shredding some store-bought barbecued duck, but in the time that it takes to flavour your stock and chop your vegetables, you could be cooking your duck breast.
What you need
- 2 cooked duck breasts, sliced thinly
- 300g dried udon noodles – prepared according to the packet instructions
- 2 litres chicken stock – if buying from the supermarket choose the unsalted variety
- Slice a good chunk of ginger – about thumb-size, I guess
- Peeled zest of 1/2 orange
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 2 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 stick cinnamon
- a few star anise
- 2 red chillis, de-seeded and thinly sliced (plus some small hotter ones to serve if you’re in the mood for chilli)
- 8 button mushrooms, finely sliced
- 100g broccoli – cut into florets
- 4 sliced spring onions (to garnish)
- coriander (to garnish) optional
- lime wedges (to serve)
What you do with it
If you haven’t been able to get pre-cooked duck, you’ll need to cook your duck breasts. Pat the skin dry and score in a criss-cross through the fat. Season the fat side only.
Place duck fat-side down in a cold pan on relatively low heat. You want the fat to render down and then crisp up. This should take about 12-15 minutes. You can drain some of the fat as you go, but don’t throw it away – it makes amazing roasted potatoes…
Flip the duck onto the other side and cook for another 5-7 minutes – you want it to be still pink inside. Once cooked, rest if for about 10 minutes before carving into thin slices.
While the duck is cooking place chicken stock, ginger, orange zest, soy sauce, fish sauce, cinnamon and star anise in a large pot and bring to a simmer.
Prepare your noodles according to the instructions on the packet, then rinse and drain.
Once you’re resting the duck, strain the stock to remove the orange rind and aromatics and put it back in the saucepan and back to a simmer. Add lime juice to taste if needed.
Add the chillies, mushrooms and broccoli and simmer for a few minutes until the veggies are just tender. Add the bok choy and stir through until wilted – about another 2 minutes.
Divide the noodles between bowls, top with the duck, veggies and finally pour over the broth. Garnish with spring onions and coriander and serve with lime wedges and extra chilli.