Duck gizzard: Chinese style
Duck gizzard. I’m sure once you heard what it was as a kid you swore to yourself never to look at, much less eat the stuff. But we Asians? We thrive on it.
Duck gizzard is an extremely healthy food. For every 100g of raw gizzard, there are 90 calories: 1g fat, 2g carbs, 18g protein, 280mg potassium (that’s right, screw bananas and eat some delicious gizzard post-workout!), 12mg calcium (1%), and 4.5mg iron (25%).
This has always been one of my favorites at Chinese restaurants. They typically serve these sliced thin and stir fried with some sort of vegetable. But I like these served by themselves, and I finally got off my lazy butt and did some [minimal] prep work on them so that I could eat a delicious dish and not have to shove an additional kilogram of commercial vegetable oil down my throat.
Finding the gizzard in the Chinese supermarket is easy enough – just look for where all the poultry organ meat is. Look for gizzards that look extremely red and fresh and not too gray. When in doubt, look at the expiration date.
First step after getting home from the market is to rinse and soak for half an hour. Preferably in lukewarm water so that the membranes are easier to take off, so that the it doesn’t exacerbate the chewiness of the final product.
After soaking and de-membrane-izing by simply peeling off the thin white part of each gizzard, the prep on the other ingredients is also minimal.
Slice the ginger, take out some star anise from the bag, and bust out your biggest jug of soy sauce. I, myself, am trying to use up the rest of my regular soy sauce so that I can switch to temari, but Kikkoman makes a good, tasty shoyu that can’t be beat without getting into all the fancy Japanese stuff.
After cooking, this stuff makes the house smell like a Chinese butcher shop, and it’ll look very appetizing once finished cooking. The sauce is also nice and thick from the way the protein congeals together, which makes a nice topping for vegetables or choice of starch. I like to sometimes add konnyaku about 40 minutes in to soak up the flavor of the sauce. Recipe below.
1 lb duck gizzard, membranes removed
1 Tbsp cooking fat (butter works best, in my opinion)
2 Tbsp or about 5 thinly sliced ginger
3 pieces of star anise
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1-1.5 cup water
1. Heat cooking fat in pan on high until hot. Add ginger slices and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
2. Add star anise and soy sauce. Mix and cook for 1 minute.
3. Add duck gizzard and water. Add lid to pan until water boils. Turn heat down to medium and simmer for 45-60 minutes, until the water turns extremely syrupy.
4. Turn off heat and serve hot or cold. Spoon sauce over steamed vegetables or unflavored starch.
Enjoy! More gizzard recipes to come!