Get Your Ducks in a Row
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Crispy, crunchy and glazed in tangy sauce, orange chicken is well loved by most. Asian Mix has the glistening American-Chinese favorite perfected down to a fine science.
“People just love it,” says Daniel Leung, Asian Mix co-owner. Leung and his team have been making the recipe since even before Asian Mix opened.
While the sweet, sour and orange sauce, flavored with zest, is a key element to the dish’s appeal, so is the way the chicken is prepared. Cutting the pieces to the right size ensures the best proportion of meat to batter. Making it fresh daily and cooking it to order also is important.
Take home Orange Flavor Chicken a la carte for $8.50, or pair it with some sides for a plate lunch, which is served all day. Match it up with another item and a side for $7.45. While other dishes come and go, orange chicken will always be available since it is a bestseller.
“We find that the most popular mix is orange chicken and beef and broccoli. They mix up really well,” says Leung.
Asian Mix also has tables and chairs for on-the-spot enjoyment.
Another flavorful bird to pick up at Asian Mix is Roast Duck Hong Kong Style, one of the eatery’s signature dishes. The luxury dish is easily attained priced at $22 for a whole, $11.50 for a half and $5.75 for a quarter, a portion just right for one person. High-grade ducks from the Mainland are carefully chosen and prepared to result in tender meat, a golden skin, and flavor you can taste “from the inside, out,” explains Leung. Ducks are prepared fresh daily and often sell out in the afternoon, so Asian Mix welcomes phone orders. Decide which duck you want — they are presented whole — or the staff at Asian Mix will select the largest one for you. Roast duck also is available as a plate lunch.
The preparation of the roast duck is so detailed and involved that Asian Mix places the responsibility solely on expert chef Ruan Qing, who has worked with Leung since his first day on the island. The duck is marinated for 24 hours so that the marinade seeps inside; the meat is washed of oils and the skin brushed with a vinegar mix to create the golden brown color. Roasting at the proper temperature for the correct amount of time is a delicate matter; the meat needs to cook to tenderness without burning the skin.
1234 S. Beretania St. Shop A-1, Honolulu
Open daily, 10:30 a.m.–8:30 p.m.