Mike and I used to love takeout Chinese food. Like LOVE. Like, whenever I was having a bad day he'd offer to take me to get Chinese and let me eat all the egg rolls that were humanly possible (and whatever number you're thinking - double it - I have a supernatural ability to create room for those little rolls of Heaven. Note to self: Enter egg roll eating contest).
But one day, I was planning to bring over dinner to a couple who had recently had a baby and I asked them what they'd like me to bring over - I told them they could pick anything they wanted. What did they want? Sesame chicken.
I kept backtracking, suggesting cashew chicken as an alternative. Or how about beef and broccoli? Or pad thai, or well anything that didn't require FRYING. Frying rhymes with TERRIFYING (Or is it a near rhyme? Whatever.) and that is exactly how I felt about it. But that's what they wanted and new parents get what they want, (I mean holy crap, they just formed an ENTIRELY NEW HUMAN LIFE) so the search ensued for an easy sesame chicken recipe.
I can't thank them enough for making me do this - after the first bite we swore off takeout for the rest of our lives. Yes, it's that good - it's worth the work, worth conquering FRYING (it's not that hard peeps), and even worth the greasy face.
Wanna impress? Make this tonight. Just wash your face before people come over.
Now I just have to figure out how to make good egg rolls....
|Got a little heavy-handed with the sesame seeds...oops.|
2 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts
4 tablespoons raw sesame seeds
5 green onions (sliced)
2 teaspoons chicken base
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sesame oil
ground pepper (to taste)
1/2 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons red cooking wine
1 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 eggs (beaten)
1 cup water (or as much as needed to make batter smooth)
6 tablespoons cornstarch
salt (to taste
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup honey
1/3 cup sugar salt (to taste)
1/3 cup ketchup
3 tablespoons white distilled vinegar
a few grounds of black pepper
- Cut chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces and in a bowl combine all the marinade ingredients and mix well. Add the chicken and coat evenly. Cover and marinade for 30 minutes or more in the fridge
- Add canola oil to a large saucepan, filling it about 2 1/2" up. Heat to about 325 degrees (I just use a candy thermometer)
- In a separate bowl combine all of the batter ingredients and mix thoroughly. It should flow around the pieces when you put them in yet still coat the pieces.
- Use a fork or tongs remove the pieces of chicken from the marinade and dip them into the batter to coat evenly. Fry in hot oil at about 325 degrees for about 10 minutes or until golden brown (I usually have to do this in two batches). Drain on paper towels.
- In a wok (or another large pot) combine the sauce ingredients and warm over medium heat. Bring to a boil while stirring and simmer until sauce slightly thickens. Add chicken to wok and coat with sauce.
- Garnish with sliced scallions and sesame seeds.
Serves: Four hungry people.