From a very young age, one of Neven's favourite pastimes was to shadow his mother in the kitchen, watching her cook; his pastime soon became ...
2 ready-cooked aromatic duck halves (silver hill or similar)
1/2 head iceberg lettuce (core removed and shredded)
1 firm ripe mango (peeled, stone removed and cut into julienne)
4 spring onions (thinly sliced)
50 g cashew nuts (lightly toasted and roughly chopped)
good handful fresh coriander leaves
120 ml sunflower oil
1/2 tsp toasted sesame oil
4 tblsp rice wine vinegar
2 tblsp hoisin sauce
1 tsp caster sugar
1 tblsp finely minced ginger root
1 garlic clove, crushed
salt and freshly ground black pepper
It's great that there is now authentic Chinese aromatic duck readily available in all major supermarkets. It makes this salad quick and easy to make, and the duck can be cooked a couple of hours ahead of time so that all you have to do is toss all of the ingredients together just before you are ready to serve.
Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F/Gas 6). Remove the packaging from the duck and place on a rack over a roasting tin. Roast for 25-30 minutes or according to packet instructions until the skin is crisp and the duck is completely heated through. Remove from the oven and leave to rest for 20 minutes.
Carve the meat from the duck and cut into bite-sized pieces, discarding the bones and any excessively fatty pieces of skin. Place in a large bowl with the lettuce, mango, spring onions, cashew nuts and coriander.
To make the dressing, place the sunflower oil in a small bowl with the sesame oil, vinegar, hoisin sauce and sugar. Whisk until blended, then stir in the ginger and garlic. Season to taste.
Use the dressing to lightly dress the duck salad, tossing gently until evenly combined. Arrange on plates and serve the remaining dressing in a small jug so that your guests can help themselves.