By Marcus Samuelsson | January 26, 2011

Grilling outside in winter poses obvious challenges, but using a grill pan indoors still lends poultry a smoky taste. Aromatic tea helps cut the richness of these crispy grilled duck legs, and I like to use an Asian-inspired spice blend to emphasize the dish’s citrus flavors. For a lower fat and more cost-efficient option, switch chicken for duck.

Grilled Duck Leg with Tea-Poached Bok Choy Recipe

Servings: 4


  • 4 medium duck legs
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp chopped lavender
  • 1 tbsp lemon or orange tea
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed and peeled
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup red wine
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • One 2-inch piece ginger, peeled and chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp Tea Spice Blend
Tea Spice Blend
  • 1 1/2 tbsp lemon or orange tea
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/8 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/8 tsp mild chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp freshly ground pepper
Tea-Poached Bok Choy
  • Zest and juice from 2 lemons
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, cut in half
  • One 2-inch piece ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup pearl onions, peeled and cut in half
  • 1 tbsp chopped lavender
  • 1/2 cup water chestnuts, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 lemon or orange tea bags
  • 2 scallions, white and light green parts, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 4 baby bok choy, cut into quarters


To Make Tea Spice Blend:

1. Combine the tea, ginger, garlic powder, turmeric, cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper in a small bowl.

To Make Tea-Poached Bok Choy:

1. Bring 1 cup water to a boil in a small saucepan. Add the lemon zest and boil for 30 seconds. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer lined with cheesecloth, discarding the liquid. Bring another 1 cup water to a boil in the same saucepan. Add the strained zest and boil for another 30 seconds. Strain again, then finely chop the zest. Set aside.

2. Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the garlic, ginger, and pearl onions and saute until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Add the lavender, water chestnuts, honey, salt, 2 cups water, and tea bags. Bring to a simmer and cook for 2 minutes. Add the scallions, lemon zest, lemon juice and bok choy and simmer for 2 minutes. Remove and discard the tea bags and serve.

To Make Duck:

1. Rub the duck legs with the olive oil. Place in a shallow dish, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 1 hour.

2. Combine the lavender, tea, garlic, chicken stock, red wine, lemon zest, ginger, bay leaf, salt, pepper, and 2 cups water in a large deep pot and bring to a boil. Add the duck legs, reduce the heat, and simmer for 1 hour, flipping the legs occasionally. Remove the duck legs and pat dry. Sprinkle with the tea spice blend. Discard the cooking liquid.

3. Heat a grill pan over high heat.

4. Place the duck legs on the grill, skin side down, and cook until caramelized, about 3 minutes. Turn and cook for another 3 minutes. Serve with tea-poached bok choy.

More about: , , ,

You Might Also Like:

Featured Recipe

More Recipes

Meet the Team

About The Team

Whether it’s finding the best goat tacos in LA, spotting a well-worn vintage bag in Sweden, or interviewing the “crab man” selling seafood on a corner in Harlem, we tell stories seen from Chef Marcus Samuelsson‘s point of view. MarcusSamuelsson.com strives to create conversations about food, nutrition, culture, art, and design. We want to find Read More


Streetbird Rotisserie
Marcus’ Bermuda
Eatery Social Taqueria
Red Rooster Harlem
Ginny’s Supper Club
Uptown Brasserie
American Table Cafe and Bar
Kitchen and Table
American Table Brasserie and Bar
Marc Burger