Friday, January 18, 2013

Beautifully imperfect


I used to be a perfectionist but not anymore.  I once read an article by Henrik Edberg and he said:

“Does life have to be perfect before you are happy?

Do you have to behave in a perfect way and get perfect results to be happy?

If so, happiness will not be easy to find. Setting the bar for your performance at a level higher than reasonable usually leads to low self-esteem and feeling like you are not good enough, even though you may have had a lot of good or even excellent results. You will likely feel that what you do is never good enough. Maybe once in a while might feel like something goes just perfect, but then it will be on to next challenge."

I agree with Henrik, chasing for our idea of what is perfection will not only place ourselves on uncessary stress but it will spill over to our love ones or co-workers. So, when I bought this duck from the wet market a few weeks ago, I had the duck deboned and then realized it was the wrong thing to do if I were to make braised duck with ginger . In the old days, I would have run out to go buy another duck but now, I decided to just use what I had. Although the meat was a little dry, the flavors were great. By allowing myself to carry on, without stress or rush, and hoping for good enough, I enjoyed the cooking, and I enjoyed the "good enough duck". 

Okay here is the braised duck with ginger. With bone left in, it may come out pretty close to perfect. Let me know what you think of this close-to-perfect or beautifully imperfect dish?

Braised duck with ginger
adapted from smokywok.com with modification


Ingredients:
1kg duck cut into big pieces
150 g young ginger, cut into thick sliced
1 bulb garlic, sliced
½ C shaoxing wine
1 tbs oil

Seasonings:
2 tbs fermented Soya Bean Paste (Taucu)
1 1/2 tbs Oyster sauce
1 tsp Sugar

Method:
Heat oil and brown all the duck pieces. Remove duck pieces and set aside. Saute garlic and ginger. Add in duck pieces and seasonings and stir well. Add wine and leave to boil for about 5 mins. Pour water until it covers all the ingredients. Bring to boil and lower heat to simmer until meat is tender and sauce is thick for about 30 to 4o minutes. This dish will taste better the next day.

I am submitting this post to Chinese New Year Delights 2013 hosted by Sonia aka Nasi Lemak Lover 

40 comments:

  1. I remember when my maternal granny used to cook ginger duck during CNY and we kids then always look forward to that 2nd day... too bad I was too young then... didnt know the recipe will be "priceless" today...
    Happy Cooking, QP!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes this dish was very popular when I was younger even in the Chinese restaurants but not so much now ya?

      Delete
  2. Mmm...i can imagine the taste. Dont think can find this dish outside.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kathy, now you have the recipe, just cook it at home lah. Wee Kean and Small Kucing will be happy boys.

      Delete
  3. Quay Po, I am sure it is lip smacking delicious, with or without bone! I would actually prefer it without bone as it is easier to eat. Hey, saw an article on Nick in The Star this morning. Nice!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. hehe, you are like my Quay Lo, always want meat without bones. Are you half "Quay" ? Thanks for letting me know about the article about Nick in The Star:D

      Delete
  4. My MIL used to cook this dish for CNY esp for my bro-in-law. He loves this dish.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The sister of my late hubby cooke this dish very well too.

      Delete
  5. The test of the pudding is in the eating. Oooo...duck!!! I like!!!! My missus doesn't eat duck...so I'm always so deprived. Sobssss!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When you coming to KL again? Come be my taster and tester.

      Delete
  6. The duck still look perfect! I agree with you and Hendrik, one will lead a depress life if you set a high expectation and you will never be happy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you agree, so let's just stay happy with "Good enough".

      Delete
  7. Oh YUM! This dish looks so appetizing! Bookmarking this recipe for CNY ! hehehe Thanks for sharing! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kit, you are welcome. A good dish for CNY indeed.

      Delete
  8. It still looks YUM!! I have never dared de boned duck before.. or cooked duck! You make it easy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me too, that's the reason why it took me so long to try cooking this dish.

      Delete
  9. Imperfection is beauty. Madness is genius. It is better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring. - Marilyn Monroe.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Judging by the colour of the dish it still looks delicious! :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Kelly, one of these days, I must get you girls over for a Chinese dinner but probably got to be after I return from USA.

      Delete
  11. Oh, it is 嫩姜焖鸭, totally forgotten this dish !! I love sand ginger stew duck as it has a duck smell, so I always add in some blended fresh sand ginger ( 沙姜 )with garlic, some old ginger and Taucu. May be I love strong aroma food !!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I am not a huge fan of duck but I liked this a lot. This is the one I thought would be good to make for the CA family when we next go over. Make it again my dear. Bone in or bone out, I am not sure it will matter to me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you like this duck dish. Let's have this dish for our reunion dinner.

      Delete
  13. This is the way how i like to cook duck too, definitely need more rice to go with this duck. Thanks for joining my event dear.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No worries Sonia, I will always give you my support. I will not forget that you were the first person to put to link my blog to yours. XOXO

      Delete
  14. I support this dish, Quay Po! I bought 6 chinese recipe cookbooks from Malaysia and I saw a number of similar dishes there which I really like! I like how you season the duck with taucu and oyster sauce, yum! I can have this with a big bowl of rice!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Quay Po,
    Love how you cook your duck. I know this duck dish is a winner. Sure need more rice :D

    Have a beautiful Sunday !!
    mui

    ReplyDelete
  16. This dish brings back nostalgic memories. My late father-in-law used to cook this too whenever the whole clan gathered together. Great dish !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, this is a very popular dish during my childhood but nowadays, it is not so, I wonder why.

      Delete
  17. Me too, I used to be a perfectionist till my son came along and taught me that a little lesser will make the day past by better.

    This dish definitely makes me have another serving of white rice!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is good that we learn to be happy with "good enough' and be a happier person.

      Delete
  18. bellissimo blog - saluti da MILANO-ITALY

    > http://cucinadriano.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete

I love to hear from you. Your comments mean a lot to me. Thanks!