Sometimes our weaknesses become our strengths. It doesn’t happen very often, or at least it doesn’t happen to me very often, but when it does it’s pretty damn satisfying. What weakness am I talking about? The classic “eyes too big for the stomach” weakness. Like most food lovers, I often over-order, over buy, and subsequently over eat. But every now and then, my gluttony surprises me and decides to know *some* bounds. Yes, sometimes even I am unable to finish what’s on my plate. That was the case with the duck featured in this dish from last week. And that duck went on to inspire my new favorite meal: Today’s Duck & Oyster Mushroom Chive Crepes. Thank goodness for my lack of self-control.
Is it a rule that ducks have fantastically large racks? Because the breasts I picked up were ginormous. When I set out to buy the duck, I thought a breast per person sounded reasonable. Make sense, right? Wrong! In fact, I cannot stress how wrong I was. Most rational people would’ve been able to assess this miscalculation at the meat counter, but I’m not most people and I’m certainly not rational. I shrugged and thought “they’ll cook down” because in my weirdo brain seared duck and collard greens are one in the same. To make a needlessly long story short, I wound up with double the duck I needed. So, what do you do with a leftover duck breast? You make Duck & Oyster Mushroom Chive Crepes, that’s what.
In my family, leftover duck always means stir fry. I realize this is not a natural connection for most people, so let me explain. My family always serves a few roast ducks at Christmas and we always manage to cook one too many every year. That remaining duck always becomes a stir-fry. Always. So when I was confronted with leftover cooked duck breast, my head immediately went to Stir-fry-land. I obviously didn’t have as much meat as my family would typically have, so I supplemented with king oyster mushrooms. It was an easy choice. King oyster mushrooms are so flavorful and meaty they can easily hold their own alongside duck. The remaining stir fry stars were “discovered” in my crisper. This is not a bad way to use up the coleslaw mix you forgot you bought.
The crepe component also has a Christmas connection, but before I get to it, I feel I should assure you I have not (completely) lost my marbles. I know it’s March. Cool? Cool. Crepes are my family’s traditional Christmas Eve meal. We typically stuff them with a scallop cream sauce, not duck, but I would assume the idea to make crepes came from the duck/Christmas association. I don’t know. My brain doesn’t fill me in on everything. Anyway, I wanted to make crepes, so I made crepes and I put chives in them and it was awesome.
To cap the whole thing off, I wanted to make a homemade version of plum sauce. I’m a sucker for all the sweet and sour sauces, and I can’t stop won’t stop when it comes to Peking duck and duck sauce packets. Sadly, I was fresh out of plums but I had frozen cherries, so I thought a sweet and sour cherry sauce would get along famously with my Crepes. I was not wrong. This sweet and sour cherry sauce is one for the ages. I cannot wait to pour the leftovers over spare ribs and chicken wings – cannot wait! I should mention the recipe below will make a ton of sauce, so freeze it and turn it into your next meal. That’s what I’m going to do. It just goes to show leftovers can take you a lot of delicious places.
Celebrate poor planning and all the leftovers it creates with these Duck & Oyster Mushroom Chive Crepes. May your eyes constantly be too big for your stomach and your grocery store logic always flawed.
- 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 whole eggs
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup milk (I used 1%)
- 4 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
- 3/4 cup fresh chives, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups frozen cherries
- 1/2 cup Shaoxing Wine
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 star ainse pods
- 1 (1-inch) knob ginger, grated
- 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 cooked duck breast, thinly sliced
- 3 King oyster mushrooms, sliced
- 1 bunch scallions, quartered
- 1 2-inch knob of ginger, peeled and minced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 bag coleslaw mix
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1/4 cup Shaoxing wine
- 4 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
- 1 teaspoon five spice powder
- In a large mixing bowl, sift flour and salt together. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, water, milk and melted butter. Stir in the chives.
- Slowly pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture, stirring constantly until a batter forms.
- Heat a small amount of butter over medium heat in a non-stick skillet. Add a ladle-full of the crepe batter to the hot pan. Quickly rotate the pan to ensure the batter covers the entire surface area.
- Flip the crepe when the edges begin to curl. About 3 minutes. Cook for an additional two minutes on the opposite side.
- Remove the finished crepe from the pan and place on a plate lined with parchment paper. Place another piece of parchment paper on top. Repeat with the remaining crepe batter.
- Place the cherries, star anise, cinnamon stick and grated ginger in a small saucepan. Pour in the Shaoxing wine and place the saucepan over high heat. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Pour the contents off the pot into a fine mesh strainer. Press the cherries against the strainer to squeeze out any excess juice. Discard the solids and return the juice to the pot.
- Stir in the sugar, soy sauce and rice wine vinegar and place the saucepan over medium heat. Bring the mixture to a simmer.
- In a small bowl, whisk the cornstarch and a small amount of water together to form a slurry. Pour the slurry into the simmering cherry mixture. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly while it thickens. Once the sauce can easily coat the back of a spoon, take it off the heat and leave it to cool to room temperature.
- Heat canola oil in a large wok over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and ginger, and sauté until fragrant. Add the mushrooms and cook until browned and slightly softened. About 3-5 minutes.
- Add the scallions and duck and sauté until the duck is warmed through and the scallions have wilted. About 3 minutes.
- Pour in the Shaoxing wine and deglaze the wok. Stir in the coleslaw and toss briefly.
- In a small bowl, whisk the soy sauce, hoisin and five spice powder together. Pour sauce over stir fry and toss to coat. Remove from heat.
- Spread some sweet and sour cherry sauce on a chive crepe and top with the stir fry. Roll the crepe like an open-ended burrito. Serve with a cold beer, lots of napkins and additional cherry sauce.