The humble duck is not only a lovely bird, but has also become a household name in the global culinary world. Today, it continues to evolve as a favourite of the food lovers, serving as an absolute delight for many. But long back, in around 480-589, it was dominating as an iconic dish within the Asian dynasties.
First begun with its exposure in an ancient cookbook by Hu Sihui, the duck meat popularized as the Chinese ‘Shao Yazi’, and was invading parts of Asia. In Chinese cuisine, duck meat was served as a staple dish mentioned in popular writings of the Ming dynasty. Later on, it grew into prominence in Beijing as the Peking duck, or the roasted duck, thereby becoming a national symbol of China during the 1970s. What made this dish so immensely popular was the method of extracting succulent, and juicy meat by preparing them in a certain way.
The traditional duck meat preparation followed the classical way of cooking them inside sheep’s gut. It delivered an additional flavour by retaining the fat without disrupting the tender quality of the duck meat. Slowly, we found a gradual progress by the time it reached Beijing, where people were being more inventive with the duck meat. The main motto was to present a dish that offered both tender, as well as a crispy fold to it. Roasting the duck served both these purposes by forming a crispy envelope while keeping the tenderness well intact inside.
Tracing back to this popular dish that once emerged, and stood out to be a quintessential delicacy amidst the Asian culture, one of the best Chinese restaurants in Kolkata, Chowman, took a leap forward with its first ever Oriental Duck festival celebrated almost 9 years back.
While many other restaurants have already brought in varieties of duck preparation in their menu, Chowman’s endeavour was entirely different. As a means to retrace the footprints of this popular oriental dish, their festival attempted to reincarnate that very spirit of the authentic oriental Chinese Cuisine.
Celebrated every year, Chowman’s famous ‘Oriental Duck Festival’ comprises a specially curated menu with a wide range of dishes centralising around duck meat. However, the best part is that keeping in mind its Indian customers; Chowman has very thoughtfully re-invented the dishes by fusing in subtle Indian flavours that keep them closely connected to the dishes as well.
Today, Chowman’s duck festival comes with over fourteen different dishes and is the perfect concoction of authentic style of Chinese cooking, with an Indo-Chinese blend to them. The festival has been a huge success already, and wishes to continue winning people’s hearts.