February 28, 2013

Garlic-Ginger Chicken w/ Arborio Rice & Stir Fry

I have been craving Asian flavors.  This past Saturday completed my month long study of Spanish and Latin food components with the "Spanish Inspired Tapas Style Dinner" for 70 guests, finally presented.  Immediately, on Monday when I began to meal plan for the week, I was drawn to recipes that had an Asian flare.  Maybe that can be next years dinner!  We have done Italian, French, Greek & Spanish themed dinners for an annual couples banquet in February.   Anyhow, my first recipe used boneless chicken coated in a spicy, sweet ginger -garlic  sauce.  I marinated the chicken in soy sauce and Sherry for about 20 minutes to soften up the fibers.  I didn't  want the chicken drying out during the cooking process and I for sure wanted to produce a tangy multi -layer flavor from the meat.   I used rice flour to make it gluten free as well as egg whites and smaller amounts of oil to reduce calories. 
I had 3 pounds of chicken and I cut them in strips for 1 recipe and  cubes for another, setting the cubes aside for a later dish.

For the Chicken:
1 1/2 lbs. boneless chicken, cut in strips.
1/2 cup Sherry wine (not cooking Sherry)
1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp. soy sauce, divided
1 cup of rice flour
3 beaten egg whites
1 small piece of ginger, minced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 Tbsp. siriachi sauce or other hot sauce
1/4 cup of sugar
Optional: toasted sesame seeds
Oil for fying/sauteeing
1 Tbsp. butter
2 green onions, washed, sliced on the diagonal in 1 inch pieces. 

For the Stir Fy Vegetables:
1 cup of slivered ehite onion
3 large carrots, peeled and thinly sliced on the diagonal
2 stalks of celery, thinly sliced on the diagaonal
1 clove of garlic, minced
2 cups of snow pea pods
1 Tbsp. oil for sauteeing. 
Arborio rice
1 cup of chopped fresh colantro
For the Vegetables-
  1. Heat oil in saute pan or wok.  
  2. Stir fry/saute vegetables about 2 minutes until coated with oil and heated through.   
  3. Set aside. 
 For the Rice-
  1. Cook according to package instructions (I used 1 1/2 cups rice to 2 1/2 cups water).
  2. Set aside rice, fluff with a fork.
  3. Add chopped cilantro and  2 Tbsp. soy sauce

For the Chicken-

Mise en place: set up dredging station, paper towel lined plate, measure out needed  ingredients
  1. Place chicken in a bowl and cover wtih Sherry & 1/4 cup of the soy sauce.  
  2. Marinate 20 minutes.  Drain chicken and pat dry.
  3. Whisk egg white with a pinch or 2 of salt in a shallow dish.
  4. pour rice flour into 2 separate bowls.  this will be your dredging station.
  5. take a piece of chicken, coat it in the flour, toss with egg, then roll in flour again. 
  6. This 3 step process insures that the flour will stick to the chicken during the cooking process.
  7. Place the chicken on plate and finish all the pieces, using more dredging ingredients if you run out.  
  8. Heat about 1 cup of oil in heavy bottom skillet or saute pan(use the same one you used for the vegetables) or wok over medium high heat  
  9. Adjust as necessary during the cooking process if you see it brown too fast.  Add more oil if necessary.
  10. Place about 6-8 strips in the pan at at time, being careful not to crowd the pieces.  
  11. Flip the chicken when you se the bottom turn a golden brown-about 3 minutes.  
  12. Flip and brown evenly on the next side.  
  13. Remove with tongs or a slotted spoon to a plate lined with paper towels.  
  14. Finish cooking the rest of the chicken.  
  15. Finally, drain most of the oil, add reserved garlic, ginger and sirachi sauce with butter.  Melt and heat through for about 30 seconds.
  16. Put all the chicken into the pan, sprinkle with the sugar and add remainder 1/4 cup of soy sauce.
  17. toss and saute until sugar is dissolved and all chicken is evenly coated.
  18. Turn off heat and plate:
  • Scoop a serving of rice onto the plate
  • Top with vegetables
  • Add chicken
  • Garnish with chopped green onion and toasted sesame seeds.

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