What’s Shanghaied Duck Ddeok? Well, everybody knows what a duck is. Ddeok, or more properly ddeok guk ddeok, is a Korean foodstuff whose name is translated as “rice cake”, and they’re not like the crunchy rice cakes that you put peanut butter on or whatever. They’re more like a thick, short, wide noodle made out of rice flour, with an oval shape about 2 ½ inches long. They’re also found in Chinese cuisine, but I don’t know their name in Chinese. They are sold in cellophane bags and in their dry form, they look a little like something’s toenails. Depending on how long they’ve been soaked and cooked, their texture is somewhere between a sort of rubbery, very al dente pasta, and a more conventional pasta texture. They are one of the world’s top ten oddly compelling foodstuffs.
As for the “Shanghaied” part, Shanghai duck is a way to cook a whole or quartered duck in a brown soy-based sauce with scallions. Rather than starting from scratch, I decided to “Shanghai” some duck leftovers, adapting a Shanghai duck recipe to allow for the fact that I was using cooked and not raw duck, and add some ddeok. Voila – Shanghaied Duck Ddeok.
This recipe assumes that you are starting with a roast duck, and you don’t need an entire one – I used leftovers and it just came out fine; the only thing that changes is the duck density. If you cook your own, roast it plain or using a recipe with appropriate spices (I used the Spicy Laquered[sic] Duck recipe), not using some other set of spices that won’t work with the Chinese spices of the Shanghai sauce.