Palao Duck, a special menu for Christmas

Last update: 25/12/2019

KUCHING, Dec 25 -- Keeping with the tradition of Christmas celebrations in the country, Christians are hosting open houses and visiting friends and relatives in celebrating the joyous occasion.

Several churches here such as St Joseph's Cathedral and St Thomas' Cathedral at Jalan Tun Abang Haji Openg were the focus of Christians who began thronging from early morning.

For Philip Engkapan, 63, the Christmas celebration this year is a modest affair filled with family tradition.

Interestingly, one of the must-have Christmas menus for Philip's family is the 'Palao' Duck or duck in spiced gravy.

Philip said the special menu that his family has been serving for over 50 years has also become the most sought-after dish among relatives and those who came over to his house during Christmas.

“By using special ingredients such as Chinese herbs, 'bungkang' leaves,  cinnamon and galangal, the Palao Duck is cooked for about 60 minutes before being served,” he told Bernama.

The father of three said he and his family left their house as early as 7.30 am to go to St. Francis's Church in Samarahan near here for a religious service.

“After that, we return home to do the final preparations and to welcome and entertain visiting relatives. This year not all family members return for Christmas, so we decided to have a simple celebration,” he said.

Philip said, his eldest daughter, Farah Nasuha (a Muslim revert), who has been living in Johor for over 10 years could not be with the family this year due to work commitments.