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Chinese-Tea Smoked Duck Breasts with Plum Sauce
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3 from 1 vote

How to Make Chinese-Tea Smoked Duck Breasts with Plum Sauce

Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time1 hr
Keyword: smoked duck breast
Servings: 5


  • 6 duck breasts with their skin on
  • 2 tbsp tea leaves of your choice (don’t use teabags)
  • ounce uncooked whole grain rice
  • ¾ ounce cane sugar, broken into small pieces
  • 2 ½ tbsp all-purpose or plain flour
  • Fine sea salt, to taste

For the Plum Sauce

  • 1 ½ cups red plums
  • 1 onions
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 3 whole cloves
  • ½ ounce piece of ginger
  • 1 tbsp orange juice
  • A dash of black pepper, to taste


Step 1: Score and Salt the Duck

  • Since you’re going to leave the skin on, you’ll start up by scoring the skin just like the classic recipe.
  • Score the skin with a sharp knife to make a diamond pattern after blot drying the duck breast with a paper towel. (don’t cut into the meat)
  • Lightly salt the skin of the breast then let them sit for 30 minutes if you’ve taken them out of the fridge.

Step 2: Prepare the Plum Sauce

  • Meanwhile, prepare the plum sauce by cutting and dicing the plums into small cubes (remove the pits first), then add them in a medium-sized saute pan with the granulated sugar.
  • Break the cinnamon into small pieces then mince the onions into fine pieces, then add them to the mix.
  • Squeeze in a zesty orange juice and water, then turn up the pan to medium heat and bring it to a boil.
  • Season the sauce with salt and pepper to taste but don’t forget that you’re salting the duck breasts too. You can taste the mix every now and then to see if it has reached the desired level of seasoning.
  • If the cinnamon or ginger feels too strong at any point, simply take them out. Once the mixture starts boiling, lower the heat and leave the sauce to simmer for about 10 to 15 minutes or until the sauce reduces to a fairly thick puree, then set aside to cool.

Step 3: Cook the Duck Breasts

  • Back to the breasts, cook them so that they reach the ideal level of doneness for you. Remember, the pan must be cool at first to render as much fat as possible while cooking and enjoy a crispy and flavorful skin.
  • Once all the side gets an even brown color, transfer the breasts to the smoking step.

Step 4: Smoke the Duck Breasts with Tea Leaves

  • Prepare an unoiled wok and layer in two sheets of foil at the bottom and a rack on the top. Add the rice, cane sugar, rice, and flour with the tea leaves of your choice. A good suggestion here is the jasmine tea leaves because they give a balanced smokey flavor.
  • Put the duck breasts with the skin side up on the rack then turn the wok up to high heat. In the beginning, the smoke will be white but will then darken until it becomes dark yellow.
  • When that happens, lower the heat and smoke it for one minute, then another two minutes after turning off the heat. Remove the lid and take the breasts out from the smoking wok.

Step 5: Serve the Smoked Duck Breasts with Plum Sauce

  • Remove all the solid pieces of the sauce (cinnamon, clove, and ginger), then pour some of the sauce in a serving plate while laying the duck breast over them.