Eat!

Eating is a necessity. However, we choose what to eat. The choices we make reveal a great deal about us. The food you eat can tell quite a bit about your heritage, your family, your fears, your sense of adventure, your attitude toward yourself and others, and a myriad of other personal tidbits to anyone paying attention. Everything about eating is a glimpse into your soul.

I hope to reveal a little bit about myself to you through my food. I enjoy cooking. I enjoy eating. I find pleasure in bringing pleasure to others. I hope that by sharing my recipes I bring you a little bit of joy.

Cook my food. Feed it to the people you love.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Sesame Chicken Takeout



Sesame Chicken Takeout

I teach high school in my other life. This time of year, we are BROKE. I don’t get paid again until the end of the month. Even though I have my paychecks spread out so that I can get paid over the summer, this month I miss a check. So, while we are not destitute, we are not eating steak and lobster.

Cheap is where many of my recipes begin. Fortunately, delicious is where they end up. I had chicken and broccoli in the freezer and rice in the pantry. I also had sesame oil and sesame seeds. We can’t afford Chinese takeout, but we don’t need it. This Sesame Chicken Takeout is as good as anything I purchased at the Golden Dragon.

When making this make sure to use low sodium soy sauce or this will be too salty to eat. Also make sure that the battered chicken is cold before you fry it. It is important if you want the batter to be light and rise slightly that it be cold. I served this over broccoli because that is what I had. However, you could also add baby corn, steamed carrots and or shiitake mushrooms.

Servings: 6-8
Time:  Active time 35 minutes; Cook: 20  Minutes, takeout in about 40 minutes
Hardware:  Measuring spoons and cups, a cutting board and knives, a whisk, a large mixing bowl, plastic wrap, a deep skillet, tongs, a paper towel lined plate, a sauce pot, a small bowl, a large serving dish

Ingredients:
Chicken
  • 1 ½ pounds boneless chicken breast or thighs
  • ½ cup corn starch
  • ½ cup flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons of baking powder
  • ½ cup cold water
  • ⅓ cup low sodium soy sauce
  • Dash sesame oil
  • Oil for frying
Sauce
  • 1 cup water
  • ⅓ cup low sodium soy sauce
  • ⅓ cup mirin (you can substitute dry sherry or white wine)
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar (you can substitute cider vinegar)
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon of corn starch
  • 2 heaping teaspoons sesame seeds
  • A large bag of steamed broccoli and 3 cups steamed white rice

  1. Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces and crush the garlic. Set aside
  2. Put the corn starch, flour and baking powder in the large mixing bowl. Whisk the water, soy sauce and sesame oil into the flour mixture. Whisk until there are no lumps. Toss in the chicken. Make sure all the chicken pieces are coated, Cover the bowl in plastic wrap and place in the fridge until needed.
  3. Mix the water, soy sauce, wine, vinegar, garlic, sugar and sesame oil together in the sauce pot over medium heat. Stir until the sugar melts. Keep warm.
  4. Fill the skillet up half way with oil over medium high heat. When the oil is hot, fry the chicken. Don’t let the pieces touch or crowd. You will need to cook it in batches. Put the unused chicken back into the fridge until you need it.
  5. Cook the chicken pieces until they are golden brown, about five minutes. Flip the chicken and cook until both sides are browned. Remove the chicken to the paper towel covered plate. Keep it warm in the oven on the lowest setting.
  6. When all the chicken is cooked, mix the tablespoon of corn starch with 2 tablespoons of cold water in the small bowl. Turn the heat up under the sauce until it comes to a boil. Whisk in the corn starch-y water. The sauce will immediately thicken.
  7. To serve, place the rice on the serving dish. Top the rice with the broccoli. Top the broccoli with the chicken. Then pour the sauce over the entire dish. Sprinkle with the sesame seeds.

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