Thursday, January 7, 2016

Mongolian Chicken

This is not the eponymous chicken you see at Chinese buffets. Rather, the chicken comes together with a short marinade, a quick stir fry and an easy sauce. I have a drawerful of Chinese sauces that can be worked into the recipe. A ginger garlic hoisin marinade imbibes chicken with loads of flavor. Onions and green peppers add body to the dish. Dark and light soy sauces blended with shaoxing wine and cornstarch, make a thick shiny sauce.  It's a fast fifteen minutes from wok to chopsticks!

Serves 2-4 people

1 lb boneless skinless Chicken Thighs
3 tablespoons Hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons finely chopped Garlic
1 tablespoons grated Ginger
1 teaspoon toasted Sesame Oil
4 Shallots or small Red Onions
1 Green Pepper
1 tablespoon light Soy Sauce
1 tablespoon dark Soy sauce
1/4 cup Shaoxing Wine or Sherry
3 teaspoons Cornstarch 
3 tablespoons Canola Oil
1 heaping tablespoon Toasted Sesame Seeds
2 chopped Scallions

Wash, dry and cut chicken into 1/2 inch rough strips.

Add hoisin sauce, garlic, ginger and sesame oil. Stir to mix and keep aside for 15 minutes or up to one hour if you have the time.

Chop onions and green pepper into thick slices. 

Stir dark and light soys, shaoxing wine and cornstarch together in a bowl.

Heat oil in nonstick wok till shimmering, add onions and peppers. Stir fry on high heat till wilted for 3-5 minutes. Remove to a plate. 

Return wok to flame and add chicken to hot pan. If you are not using a nonstick pan, add a teaspoon more of canola oil to pan. Stir chicken till almost cooked, 7-10 minutes. 

Drop onions and peppers into the wok.

Stir soy mixture well before adding to the wok. Move the chicken with a spoon as the sauce thickens.

Once the sauce thickens and becomes dark, scatter sesame seeds and chopped scallions over chicken and enjoy!

Fried rice and noodles make good accompaniments.

As the recipe says, all we need is fried rice and noodles. Thighs make meaty nuggets. The sauce is piquant. Chopsticks click and clack as the meal progresses, reminding me that chicken can really wok this away.