There are not many meat dishes I miss since going vegan, but duck pancakes is definitely one of them. It may sound a bit strange as it’s not like I grew up on them (I first tried them in my early 20s) or even ate that them that often as an omnivore, but I fell in love with this dish ever since I first tried it.
I would have crispy duck pancakes once or twice a year, usually on a lazy winter Sunday when hours of wandering through Soho made our stomachs rumble and an impromptu dinner in Chinatown suddenly seemed like a genius idea. As this is one of these ‘traditions’ we won’t be able to keep up, I was determined to find a way to be able to experience these textures and flavours as a vegan.
Once again, jackfruit has delivered! First its meaty flesh gets marinated in aromatics, spices and hoisin sauce and then it is baked in a hot oven to give it a bit of added crispiness around the edges. I recommend marinating it a day in advance as it is one of these dishes that develops more flavour with time.
As I wasn’t able to get the pancakes here, I’ve had to make them myself, but I encourage you to buy them instead. As they need to be very thin and pliable, getting them right is a steep learning curve.
Other than the preparation of the jackfruit itself, this dish isn’t very time consuming if you use shop-bought hoisin sauce as well as shop-bought crispy duck pancakes. It is therefore perfect for entertaining. Serve all of the components separately and let your guests assemble their pancakes themselves as they would in a Chinese restaurant.
Vegan or not, I bet they won’t turn up their noses at a meatless version of this Chinese crowd pleaser!
PS: If you make my vegan duck pancakes, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram as @lazycatkitchen and use the #lazycatkitchen hashtag. I love seeing your takes on my recipes!