Sunday, April 17, 2011

General Tso's Chicken

This seems to be a rather ubiquitous dish in Chinese restaurants and take-outs. I don't think I have ever had it but I know I've seen it lots of times on menus. I found this recipe in Food & Wine magazine. It sounded good and not complicated, so I gave it a try. It turned out really nice. I only used half the sugar of the original recipe, though. I don't like my food too sweet.

1-2 tsp sesame oil
1 large egg white
5 tbsp soy sauce
7 tbsp cornstarch
1 pound skinless boneless chicken thighs, trimmed and cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup chicken broth
1 tbsp Sesame Garlic sauce (Iron Chef)
1 1/2 tbsp sugar
vegetable oil for frying
2 tbsp very finely chopped fresh ginger
1 tbsp dried minced garlic
4 scallions, thinly sliced
Rice and broccoli for serving

Combine sesame oil, egg white, 1 tbsp soy sauce and 6 tbsp cornstarch. Add chicken, stirring to coat. Let stand at room temperature for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk the chicken broth with the sesame-garlic sauce, sugar, 1/4 cup soy sauce, 1 tbsp cornstarch, and garlic. Heat 1 tbsp vegetable oil in a large skillet. Add the ginger and cook over high heat until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir the broth mixture and add to the skillet. Cook until thickened and glossy, about 3 minutes. Keep warm over low heat. In a large, deep skillet, heat 1/2 inch  of oil until shimmering. Carefully add the chicken, one piece at a time, and fry over high heat, turning once or twice, until very browned and crisp, about 4 minutes. Drain the chicken on paper towels and immediately add to the sauce along with the scallions. Cook just until coated, about 30 seconds. Serve right away with rice and broccoli.

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