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Sunday, April 13, 2014

Sweet-and-sour chicken stir-fry (Chinese-American)

The classic sweet-and-sour chicken stir-fry from the Chinese cuisine. It may not be super authentic in China and it's more of a product of the American-Chinese cuisine, but it's definitely one of the most popular choices in Chinese restaurants in Europe. 
The chicken bits are cooked with lots of flavorful veggies and sauces that take the whole dish at its well-known level of deliciousness. It's not at all hot, which is a bit unusual for Chinese cuisine (especially the Sczechuan cuisine), but I guess that's because the dish was designed to suit the Western palates better. Anyway, it's a pretty healthy, quick and lovely dinner. Enjoy.

Last year: Casa Dragones Guacamole (Mexican) (raw vegan).
Two years ago: Green pasta with red peppers and wild duck ham.
Three years ago: Aubergine and zucchini pizzaMarinated pork chops with balsamico glaze and Pasta peperonata (Bell pepper rigatoni) (Italian).

Ingredients (serves 2):
  • 300 g chicken breast
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 200 g cucumber (half of a large one)
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 red bell peppers
  • 4 tomatoes
  • 3-4 garlic cloves
  • 150 ml water
  • 3 tablespoons white rice vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce 
  • 1 tablespoon starch (wheat or corn works fine)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Prepare the veggies.

Chop the cucumber, carrots and bell peppers into sticks. Chop the tomatoes into chunks. Heat the peanut oil in a deep frying pan or a wok. Chop the meat into pieces and fry it in the oil. Add salt and pepper and the sliced garlic:

After the meat is fried all over add the chopped veggies.

Fry them, stirring often, for 5-6 minutes, until the veggies seem a bit more tender:

Mix the water with the vinegar, sugar, starch and soy sauce. Pour the mix in the wok:

Cover and let it cook for 10 minutes, then uncover and let it cook for however long it takes for the liquid to mostly evaporate and the sauce to become thick. Don't forget to stir once in a while.
When the sauce has reached the desired consistency, transfer to serving plates and dig in! :)

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