I'm a sucker for Chinese food..both classic and Americanized versions. There's something especially comforting to me about the tastes and flavors. Plus, I love any excuse to make things spicy. Now, nothing will replace your combo of choice from your favorite Chinese restaurant, but it's just as easy to make some in your own kitchen.
So if you're feeling bold, try this recipe for a spicy chicken dish that will remind you of Sesame or General Tso's chicken. It's quick...it takes even less time than waiting for the order you've called in!
Spicy Szechuan Chicken
Leftover Potential: reheats decently, but since it is fried it loses some of it's original texture. Provided one meal after the initial dinner.
For the batter:
3 Tbsp all purpose flour
3 Tbsp corn starch
salt, as needed
pepper, as needed
1 pound chicken breasts, cut into 1/2" cubes
oil, as needed for frying
1 onion, sliced
For the sauce:
1 Tbsp oil
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 Tbsp ginger, finely minced
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup tomato paste
1/2 cup crushed tomato
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp cornstarch
3 Tbsp water
cilantro, as needed, coarsely chopped
1. In a medium bowl, mix together the ingredients for the batter. If the batter is too thick, thin it out with some water.
2. Add the cubed chicken in the batter and toss to coat well.
3. Heat the oil to 375 degrees in a deep pan. If you don't have a thermometer, use a piece of chicken as a tester. If it sinks, the oil is not hot enough, but if it rises easily to the surface, the oil is ready to use.
4. Fry the chicken in batches until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.
5. Meanwhile, prepare the sauce. Heat the oil in large pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and ginger, and stir fry until aromatic.
6. Add the remaining ingredients except for the cornstarch, water, and cilantro. Mix to combine and bring to a simmer over medium high heat.
7. Make a slurry with the cornstarch and the water, and add to the sauce. Simmer until the sauce thickens.
8. Finish the sauce with the chopped cilantro, and add the chicken. Toss the chicken in the sauce to coat, and allow to simmer for a few minutes until heated through.
9. Serve in warm bowls with steamed rice and more cilantro on top.