Kung Pao Chicken

This dish quickly became one of our favorites. The ingredients are:

The Marinade

  • Cornstarch, 3 teaspoons
  • Soy sauce, 2 tablespoons
  • Sake, 4 teaspoons

The Sauce

  • Ground Sichuan pepper, 1 teaspoon
  • Cornstarch, 2 teaspoons
  • Sugar, 4 teaspoons
  • Black vinegar, 2 tablespoons
  • Soy sauce, 2 teaspoons
  • Hoisin sauce, 2 teaspoons
  • Sesame oil, 2 teaspoons

Everything Else

  • Carrots, sliced
  • Bell pepper, chopped
  • Celery, sliced
  • Scallions, sliced
  • Chicken breasts or thighs, 2 lbs, cut into cubes
  • Unsalted, dry-roasted peanuts, 1/2 cup
  • Dried red chilis, 8-10
  • Garlic, 4 cloves, minced
  • Ginger, 2 teaspoons, minced or grated
  • Peanut or vegetable oil, 2 tablespoons
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The ingredients.

Some of the ingredients are a little obscure. For instance, ground sichuan pepper isn’t something you can find anywhere; I had to specially order mine.

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Sichuan pepper.

Also, black vinegar(on the left) which you may also have to specially order.

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Black vinegar.

The first step is to marinate the chicken: mix the cornstarch, sake, and soy sauce together until the former is dissolved. Then add the chicken and coat it as completely as you can. Let it marinate for about 10 minutes at room temperature.

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The marinade.

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Marinading.

Secondly, prepare the sauce by combining the black vinegar, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, sesame oil, sugar, cornstarch, and Sichuan pepper together in another bowl. Again, mix until everything is dissolved, and then set aside.

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The sauce.

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Prep the veggies.

Next, heat a wok, add the peanut oil, and then add the chilis, stir-frying for about 30 seconds. You’ll notice that the chilis start to blacken, and smoke in a way that may make you wheeze.

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Chili-frying.

Then add the chicken mixture and cook until the chicken is no longer pink.

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Chicken-frying.

This is the part of the story where you add everything else. First, the garlic and ginger, frying them for 30 seconds or so. Then, the sauce mixture.

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Chili-chicken-sauce frying.

Then add the veggies, peanuts, and everything else.

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Just fry everything.

I think you’ll find it’s delicious – nearly as good as what you’d get from a restaurant!

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