In Sumatra a duck rendang is made slightly, well quite, differently to its cousin beef rendang. For beef rendang the sauce is reduced down to almost nothing, the oil separates and the meat absorbs all the delicious fresh spicy flavours over the very long cooking time. This is a way of preserving meat, actually it is said it gets better with age. Duck rendang includes tamarind but no fresh shredded coconut, the sauce is simmered for an hour before the duck is even added and the sauce is not fully reduced.
This is one of my favourite curries, I learnt it from a local. Thank you Sri Owen. Sorry about the changes.
The occasion is…….um…….’it’s Wednesday’.
3 400ml tins coconut milk
6 shallots (asian red ones), finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 stems lemongrass, bruised and battered
3 long red chillies, finely chopped
3 cm ginger, finely chopped
2 cm young galangal, bashed up a bit
1 tsp turmeric, 2 tsp coriander, 1 1/2 tsp salt
1 stem curry leaves
6 duck legs
1 cup tamarind water (made from 1 tblsp paste in 1 cup hot water)
Put all the ingredients except the duck and tamarind in a pot and simmer for an hour, to make it even easier you can ‘finely chop’ the fresh ingredients in a food processor.
Render the duck, see here for how to render duck legs, and add to the pot with the tamarind water. Cook another 1 3/4 -2 hours. Check the seasoning and turn up the heat to reduce the sauce until the oil separates and the sauce is so thick you could almost cut it with a knife.
Serve with a green mango salad and steamed rice.
For the salad: I peeled a green mango and cut around the stone then peeled the fruit with the vegetable peeler into fine strips. I then worked through the strips with a knife to make julienne (like) shreds. I also thinly cut a handful of snow peas and mixed the mango and snow peas with a large handful of bean shoots. Roughly two tablespoons of chopped coriander and two of mint also went in and about 100g of cashew nuts, roasted in peanut oil and chopped, went on the salad at the end.
For the dressing mix together:
1 tsp ginger, finely chopped
1/2 tsp garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp red chilli, de seeded and finely chopped
2 tblsp fish sauce
1 tblsp miren
3 tblsp rice vinegar