Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Kung Pao Chicken

I recently had my first experience with Kung Pao Chicken.  The restaurant version was great, but this recipe I made at home was even better. I am a big fan of simple recipes.  At first glance this seems a bit complex, but really it's simple. The steps are just broken down for my own benefit, so I don't screw-up. Dinner time is easily my hardest time of day as that's when I need to be paying attention to what I'm doing in the kitchen as well as the precious baby girl clinging to my legs.  Anyway, try the Kung Pao. It's divine.

Kung Pao Chicken

1 lb chicken (I used 2 frozen boneless skinless breast halves) cut into strips
3 tbsp olive oil
3 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp corn starch
2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp sweet thai chilli sauce (I used 3 tbsp)
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp sesame oil
2 green onions, diced. separate green pieces from white
1 medium green bell pepper (I did half green, half red), diced
2 medium carrots thinly sliced
1/2 cup zucchini, diced (optional)
1/2 cup unsalted peanuts
3 cups prepared jasmine rice

Prepare chicken marinade: Dissolve 1 Tbsp of corn starch in 1 Tbsp of water and then add 1 Tbsp of vegetable oil, 1 Tbsp of soy sauce, 1 Tbsp of rice vinegar, and 2 tsp of minced garlic. Stir well. Pour over chicken in a container, cover and refridgerate while you prepare the rest.

Prepare the sauce: Dissolve 1 Tbsp of corn starch in 1 Tbsp of water. Then add 2 Tbsp soy sauce, 2 Tbsp rice vinegar, 2 Tbsp sweet chilli sauce, 2 Tbsp brown sugar, and 1 tsp sesame oil. Stir to combine and dissolve the brown sugar. Set the sauce aside.

Prepare the veggies: Slice the peppers, carrots, zucchini and green onion.

Prepare rice: add 1.5 cups jasmine rice to 2.5 cups boiling water. Reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes. Fluff with a fork before serving.

Heat 2 T. oil in medium skillet. When it's very hot add white portions of the onions and cook for about 1 minute. Add marinated chicken and stir-fry until cooked through (about 5 min).

Add veggies and peanuts, cook for about 2 minutes. Add the sauce and cook until thickened (about 2-3 min). Serve chicken and veggie mixture over prepared rice.

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