Saturday, September 17, 2011

Asian Orange Chicken Spectacular

Gwyn challenged me to make Asian inspired food. As may of you know, I am not particularly versed in such food as for the majority of my life I have steered away from it. But in the past two years, with the help of a few people, I have become rather accepting of such a different culinary school. I have mastered (well figured out really, I don't think I can ever master a dish) Phad Thai. This is my second major attempt at Asian inspired food:

Asian Orange Chicken Spectacular

Approx Prep: 10 minutes
Approx Cook: 45-60 minutes
Approx Marinade time: 2 hours

Feeds 3-4 people

Marinade/Sauce:
1 1/2 cup Water
2 tablespoons Orange Juice
1/4 cup Lemon Juice
1/3 cup rice vinegar
2 1/2 tablespoon Soy Sauce

1 tablespoon Orange Zest
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon fresh minced Ginger Root
1/2 teaspoon minced Garlic
2 tablespoon Chopped Green Onion
1/4 teaspoon crushed Red Pepper Flakes

3 tablespoons Cornstarch
2 tablespoons Water

Chicken:
2 Chicken breasts, cut in to 1/2 inch cubes
1 1/2 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/3 teaspoon salt
1 Egg + a little water

Oil (olive oil, if you have it add a little sesame oil) (you can get away with vegetable oil)

5-6 White Mushrooms
Handfull of Snow Peas
1 stalk worth of Broccoli Florets
A bit more garlic

Rice

In a pot, mix 1 1/2 cup water, OJ, Lemon Juice, Rice Vinegar and Soy sauce. Put over medium heat. Stir in Orange Zest, brown sugar, Ginger, Garlic, Green Onions and Red Pepper. Stir until sugar dissolves. Bring to boil, stirring occasionally. At this point all of the goodies should stop floating on the top of the liquid. Set aside to cool. Wait 10-15 minutes.

While you are waiting you can prepare chicken. After it is all cut, place in large zip-lock bag. When marinade is cool, add 1 cup of marinade to the bag. Put bag in fridge, set aside remaining marinade (it will be used for sauce later.

Let chicken marinade for at least 2 hours.

After chicken is done, there will be mass chaos. Well there will be mass chaos for those of us who are not moms or who have not gone to culinary school. You are going to have to do 3 things culminating in one final step:
1) Make the rice. Use the package directions, and plan accordingly. 
2) Stir-Fry the vegitables
3) Cook the Chicken

Then  culminate in making the sauce and mixing in the chicken and vegetables.

I would suggest staring with the chicken.  In a dish prepare an egg wash. Crack the egg, add a little water, whisk with a for until all mixed up. In another container (big one, like a cassorole dish, or big plate) mix flour, salt and pepper. In a fry pan/skillet add a generous amount of oil, heat to medium to medium high heat. Once everything is ready, take a piece of chicken out of the bag, dip it in the egg wash, dredge in flour mixture, then place in oil. Repeat until the pan has one layer of chicken. Let brown (depending on heat, 2-3 minutes) flip and brown other side. When all done, put on paper toweled plate to drain. Do this until you have cooked all of the chicken. If you are going to let it sit, cover in foil. (there is another way to do this, see alternate method below)

StirFry: When the chicken is getting near the end of the process start this up. Put some oil and garlic in a wok. Put on medium heat. Trow in vegetables. Continuously stir until veggies are just turning limp, remove from heat, drain oil.

In a pot (if it is already in a pot, good for you!) heat the former marinade to a boil. While this is getting heated up, mix cornstarch and water together. Once boiling, remove from heat, add cornstarch and water, mix thoroughly. This should form in to a nice thick sauce. 

In the wok, add the chicken on top of the vegetables. Pour sauce over everything. Turn heat to medium/medium-low. Let simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Hopefully by this point your rice is done.

Put a nice ball of rice on a plate, add a scoop of Chicken and Veggies. Serve. Enjoy.

Something about a bunny in there...
This got mad reviews. Both from my roommates who were smelling it cook all afternoon. And from Gwyn who got to eat it! I am really impressed with how it turned out. But next time I would do things a little different.

Like: Alternate Method: Don't bother with fry coating the chicken. Just put all of the marinaded chicken in to a big fry pan with the sauce if you want. Cook until chicken is done and remove. This seems far easier and far healthier too. In the end, a lot of the breading on the chicken came off in the final steps anyway, and I don't really think it added any flavor or texture once it was in the sauce.

I think this may turn in to a cook-day type recipe for me. I think I am going to mass-produce the sauce so I can make this whenever I want. It was great!

2 comments:

  1. "Well there will be mass chaos for those of us who are not moms or who have not gone to culinary school."... but you have been to culinary school... wasn't it called bachelor living or something at Mt. Spokane??? You knew how to make calzones before I did!!! Sounds like a great meal and lots of fun. I am with you... go for the alternate method... and go for the cook day mentality and have some made and on hand!!! :-)

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  2. ...you crack me up, Chef Scott!

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