Sunday, November 18, 2012

Chicken with Chiles

The first time I re-stocked my Chinese ingredients in San Francisco, I couldn't find rice wine in the store. I found that a bit odd, but there was so much else we picked up that it wasn't a big deal. Reviewing my recipes again, I realized that it was a big deal. I didn't even have sherry to substitute. A couple of weeks later, after going to a chocolate festival, we ended up wandering the city a bit. Somehow we ended up in Chinatown after walking up to Coit Tower. Popping into a store, I managed to rectify my lack of rice wine (only to be slightly overwhelmed by the selection this small shop had!). Re-stocking a kitchen is a long process, especially if you like to cook a variety of cuisines. I'm happy to no longer have a rice wine issue at least!

Don't be scared by this dish. It's a lot of chiles, but you don't get a crazy amount of heat. The original recipe calls for deep-frying the chicken. I pan-fried.

One year ago: Bagel-Egg
Two years ago: Fettucine Alfredo
Three years ago: Spinach Pomegranate Salad

Chicken with Chiles (from Land of Plenty)

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts (2/3 lb), cut into 1" cubes
2 tsp Shaoxing rice wine
1 tsp light soy sauce
1 tsp dark soy sauce
1/4 tsp salt
1 small rice bowl filled with dried red chiles, snipped in half, seeds discarded (~2 ounces)
peanut oil
2 cloves of garlic, sliced
2 tsp sliced ginger
1 tbsp whole Sichuan pepper
2 scallions, white parts only, cut into 3 sections
generous pinch sugar
2 tsp sesame oil

1. Mix together marinade ingredient in bowl and add chicken. Set aside for 30 minutes.
2. Heat oil in wok to either deep-fry or pan-fry. Cook chicken and set aside.
3. Either drain oil or add enough to have 3 tbsp in wok. Add garlic and ginger and stir-fry until fragrant.
4. Add chiles and Sichuan peppercorns and stir-fry 10 - 20 seconds. Don't burn the chiles.
5. Add chicken and scallions. Add pinch of sugar. Stir to coat.
6. Remove from heat, stir in sesame oil, and serve.

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