Pungent fresh orange zest, crushed red pepper, garlic and giner provide contrasting flavors for this hot-and-sour Szechwan sauce. I often prepare the sauce using tangerines or clementines instead of oranges.
2 Tbs soy sauce
2 Tbs rice wine or sake
1 tsp sesame oil
1 Tbs cornstarch
3/4 cup chicken broth or water
3 1/2 Tbs soy sauce
3 Tbs rice wine or sake
1 tsp sesame oil
1 1/2 Tbs rice vinegar
2 tsp sugar
1 1/4 Tbs cornstarch
1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast
3 Tbs orange zest or finely shredded orange peel removed with a vegtable peeler and cut into julienne shreds
1 1/2 cups thinly sliced water chestnuts
5 Tbs corn oil
1 1/2 Tbs minced garlic
1 Tbs minced fresh gingerroot
1 tsp crushed red peppers or chile flakes
Add the ingredients of the marinade to a bowl and mix together. Trim away any fat or sinew from the chicken and discard. Cut the breast meat on an angle into very thin slices, about 1/8 inch thick and 1 1/2 inches long. Place the slices in the bowl, toss lightly to coat, cover with plastic wrap, and let marinate 1 hour or longer in the refrigerator.
Heat 2 cups of water until boiling and blanch the orange peel for 15 seconds. Remove with a fine-meshed strainer and squeeze out the water in a paper towel. Reheat the remaining water until boiling, add the water chestnuts and blanch for 15 seconds. Drain thoroughly in a colander.
Prepare the sauce by combining the ingredients.
Heat a wok, add 3 1/2 Tbs oil and heat until very hot. Add the chicken slices and stir-fry over high heat, stirring continuously until the meat changes color and separates. Remove with a handled strainer or a slotted spoon and drain in a colander. Rinse and clean out the wok.
Reheat the wok, add the remaining 1 1/2 Tbs oil and head until very hot. Add the orange peel, minced garlic, gingerroot and hot peppers and stir-fry over high heat about 10 seconds until fragrant. Add the water chestnuts and toss lightly for about 15 seconds, then add the sauce mixture. Cook, stiring constantly to prevent lumps, until thick. Add the cooked chicken, toss lightly to coat. Serve with steamed rice.
Skill level – moderate
I cooked the chicken in two batches, and used considerably less oil than directed. The sauce didn’t thicken up as I well as I would have liked. I’d try 1/2 cup chicken broth and 2 Tbs cornstarch. I always put in more garlic, ginger and red peppers than called for, but cook according to your taste buds.