Kung Pao Chicken

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Thinking of starting a kitchen club? Kung Pao Chicken has become a favourite in our family as well as our neighbours and is the perfect kick off recipe. It has been adapted from one posted by Tony Rosenfeld in Fine Cooking and is best made just before dinner.

Kung Pao Chicken This recipe is a success story. Votes from all families are 7/10 or higher. For those with picky eaters start with the chicken plain, vegetables raw and rice on the side then introduce the sauce. One day soon they will gobble it all up!

Ingredients

Sauce Ingredients:

  • 3/4cup chicken broth
  • 2tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1tablespoon corn starch
  • 2teaspoon sesame oil
  • 11/2 teaspoons sugar

Stir Fry Ingredients:

  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breastscut into bite sized chunks
  • 1/2teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4cup corn starch
  • 1/4cup canola oil
  • 2tablespoons minced fresh ginger
  • 3 green onions thinly sliced separate white from green
  • 2 sweet bell pepperscut into chunks
  • 3 celery stalkscut in slices
  • 1/4cup sherry
  • 1/4cup coarsely chopped salted peanuts

Instructions

  1. Chop vegetables and add to one bowl: the peppers, celery, ginger and white parts of green onions. Green parts of the onion can be added later as a garnish.
  2. In a glass measuring cup whisk together chicken broth, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, 1 T corn starch, sesame oil and sugar with a fork and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl or ziplock bag toss chicken with 1/4 cup cornstarch, salt and pepper.
  4. Heat 3 tablespoons of the canola oil in a large non-stick frying pan over medium high heat until hot. Add chicken with tongs, shaking off any excess corn starch. Cook chicken until lightly browned on most sides. Approximately 2-4 minutes per side depending on size of your pan and heat. Working in 2 batches also helps to not crowd the chicken so it browns easily.
  5. Add remaining 1 tablespoon of canola oil and cook vegetables constantly stirring for 1 minute.
  6. Add the sherry and stir scraping any brown bits off the bottom of the pan.
  7. Whisk sauce ingredients one more time and add to skillet. (If taking home or preparing before dinner then at this point turn off the heat and refrigerate until 15 minutes before dinner.)
  8. Stir in sauce and cook until it thickens. Check the chicken to make sure it is no longer pink inside. Turn off heat and cover until ready to serve – 10 minutes.
  9. Serve with sticky rice and sprinkle with green onions and peanuts.

Sticky Tips

• You can purchase Japanese style rice at most groceries stores. It helps to rinse in your pot about 3 times then soak for 30 minutes in your cold water before cooking. We usually cook 1 1/2 cups dry rice for our family.  
  • Sherry can be purchased in large grocery stores at the liquor store.  It is sometimes called fortified wine or cooking sherry.  
  • Want to make this recipe lower carb?  Try cauliflower rice - food process and toss with a little oil and salt and roast on a baking sheet for 20 min at 300 degrees.

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