Dinner to-go: Head-on whole roasted ducks

April 3, 2019

Forget the restaurants. Count me as a convert to the whole roasted ducks you can find at Tim’s Oriental & Seafood Market at 7015 Bandera Road in Leon Valley.

I love this place as a grocery store as it has one of the area’s best selection of Asian kitchen staples, both food items and equipment. They also sell several prepared foods made in house, including glistening slabs of pork belly, which can be found hanging in a glass display case in the back of the store.

But I’m obsessed with is the ducks you’ll find in this case. These ducks have a deep amber skin that just crunches for days, and they’re heady with the fragrance of spices like star anise and ginger, which is packed into the bird’s cavity before roasting.

If you go to just about any restaurant and order a whole duck, you’re probably looking at a bill of $40 or more. The ducks at Tim’s run half that at just under $20.

Grab a few sides of the store’s kimchi, pickled veggies and seaweed salad, a package of tender, ready-to-fill bao buns and a jar of plum sauce while you’re there. All-in, you’re looking at an impressive do-it-yourself lunch or dinner for six for less than $30.

Now, you will be bringing home the whole duck, head and all. And if you don;t want to carve it up “Christmas Story” style (“Yes, it’s a beautiful duck, but you see, it’s smiling at me!”), the crew at Tim’s is perfectly happy to carve the ducks to order.

Paul Stephen is a food and drink reporter and restaurant critic in the San Antonio and Bexar County area. Read him on our free site, mySA.com, and on our subscriber site, ExpressNews.com. | pstephen@express-news.net | Twitter: @pjbites | Instagram: @pjstephen