serves 4-5 people as a main course
2.5 - 3kg roasting duck
1 tbsp cooking salt
1/4 cup chinese cooking wine or sherry
3 tbsp honey
1 tbsp light soy
1 tbsp hoi sin sauce
2 tbsp finely grated ginger
1/2 tbsp five spice powder
1 tbsp freshly ground sichuan peppercorns
3 pieces star anise
Wash duck inside and out and dry thoroughly with absorbent paper or with a hair-dryer then rub all over with hoi-sin, salt, five spice and sherry.
Insert remaining ingredients into body cavity and close incision by stitching with a skewer. Pre-heat oven to moderate and half-fill a roasting pan with hot water.
Put rack in the pan resting the duck with the breast facing upwards. Roast for 1/2 hour before dropping temperature to around 120-150 deg C (250-300 degrees F).
Check duck and roast for another 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Carve duck and discard any excessive fats.
Fry 2 tbsp finely sliced shallots in a hot wok, add the remaining roasting jus with 1/2 cup of light soy to make a light bodied sauce for the duck.
Serve with lightly blanched chinese greens.