The Finest “London Style Roast Duck” is Finally in KL

08 October 2019

Malaysia is widely known as the cultural melting pot of Asia,famous for its unique blend of races that make up its diverse population. While the journey to unity was a slow process, the inevitable mixing and mashing of cultures has resulted in a country lauded for its culinary diversity and prowess. Malaysian cuisine is primarily made up of traditional Malay, Indian, and Chinese dishes. However, decades of intermingling has borne fruit in the most delicious of ways, spawning dishes seen nowhere else in the world. Locally, Malaysians tend to favour a select few, which is understandable considering the overwhelming options. Amongst the nation’s favourite dishes, nasi lemak, roti canai, and char kuey teow stand atop the rest, and coincidentally represent each of the three primary races that make up Malaysia.

A trojan horse in the race to be a Chinese favourite is the London Style Roast Duck. The now cult-like dish has made its way from London’s Chinatown and is taking Kuala Lumpur by storm, quicklybecoming one of the best things to eat in KL. The name London Style Roast Duck may sound confusing, especially when you look into the history of the roast duck. Roast Duck is fondly referred to as Peking Duck around the world, with the name Pekingsimply meaning Beijing, and is a remnant of a time before the Pinyin romanisation system was widely adopted in the 1980s. The history of the dish dates back to more than 1700 years ago during the era of the Southern and Northern Dynasties in China, where the first roast duck dish was prepared.

A millennium later, during the Yuan Dynasty, the dish took its “modern” form as Peking Duck, and was a mainstay in the imperial court menus. By the 18th century, Peking Duck made its way to the mouths of nobles, and even found its way into modern Chinese poetry. Less than a century later, the first Peking Duck restaurant opened in Beijing, the first big step required to take the dish worldwide. By the mid 20th century, the dish had become a nationwide hit, and was beginning to make its way across the globe.

After understanding the history of the dish, one would not be wrong to question the “London Style” moniker being used so frivolously. According to Mervin Goh, owner of the Akashi Group in Singapore: “For many people, London’s Chinatown is synonymous with good roast duck. That’s how people started referring to it as London roast duck.” With nomenclature out of the way, is London Style Roast Duck an everyday dish or a treat to be had sparingly? The beauty of the dish lies in its simplicity, a stark contrast from its imperial courts ancestry.

Whether as a midweek dinner or as a birthday treat, roast duck finds its way into all occasions.

London Style Roast Duck is prepared by bathing a whole duck in a marination of carefully selected herbs and spices, before being whole roasted to perfection. The duck is then left to air dry to ensure a crispy bite, before being served alongside the Chef’s secret homemade sauce, providing a tantalising sweetness to a savoury dish. Not all ducks are fit for this legendary dish. The selection of the duck isa crucial aspect in perfecting the dish.

Ming Palace in Corus Hotel Kuala Lumpur painstakingly sources its ducks from a farm that caters to its stringent specifications. Freeroam ducks are fed wholly-natural maize, soybean, and wheat, while soothing music is constantly played in the background to ensure the ducks stay calm throughout. Once each duck is 43 days old, they are slaughtered and have their feathers hand-plucked. The entire process ensures the duck is tender, fragrant, and succulent – eliminatingthe gamey texture most ducks exhibit.

While roast duck is a star dish on its own, there are a variety of ways to take the level of enjoyment a step further. Depending on where you order it from, the dish is commonly accompanied by cucumbers, spring onions, and potentially even a pancake-like wrap or steamed bun. Typically, roast duck connoisseurs construct wraps or stuffed buns, blending all ingredients together, before lathering on the delicious sauce. The sauces do vary from restaurant to restaurant, but a predominant trait is the sauces’ sweetness, to add an additional dimension to the starkly umami dish.

If you find yourself looking for places to eat wonderful food in KL, be sure to drop by Corus Hotel Kuala Lumpur. Roast duck is even available as a takeaway dish. To bring the duck fever to greater heights, Corus Hotel offers wedding sets that include roast ducks at a special price, only available upon request.

Whether you call it Peking Duck, Beijing Duck, or London Style Roast Duck, this ancient dish has made its way to tables worldwide. The level of finesse and attention to detail required to making this dish as it was intended is painstaking, and elevates this already tantalising dish’s appeal. If the question of where to buy peking duck in Kuala Lumpur ever arises, Ming Palace Chinese Restaurant in Corus Hotel Kuala Lumpur is sure to knock your socks off with its world class London Style Roast Duck. Be sure to book an appointment for the best peking duck in Kuala Lumpur at Ming Palace, Corus Hotel today. Do check out our hotel’s lunch and dinner promotions too!