Confession- I can't remember the last time I cooked a stir fry. I actually love Asian inspired meals but for some reason I never cook them. This week Matt and I both wanted stir fry, random, but we did, so I set out to find the best recipe. Enter my girl Gwyneth Paltrow. I remembered seeing this recipe in her Cookbook and thinking I should make it. I also knew GP would not disappoint, love her, love her cookbook and can't wait for her new Cookbook next month!
The prep work took a little bit of time but all the stuff for the chicken can be cut up ahead of time and then you can just toss it together when ready to cook. This chicken knocked my socks off. The flavors were incredible. You can really taste the fresh ginger and garlic and the brown sugar helps caramelize the chicken. It was so amazing. It really tasted like Chinese chicken but without all the MSG and weird additives. It was fresh tasting.
GP recommends you serve the chicken with her Fried Rice with Kale and Scallions. So I followed her lead. I added some edamame to the rice and it was excellent. Both reheated really well the next day as well. A really healthy spin on a Stir Fry and Fried Rice.
B O T H R E C I P E S F R O M M Y F A T H E R S D A U G H T E R C O O K B O O K
::B E S T S T I R F R Y C H I C K E N::
- 4 skinless boneless chicken breasts, cut into small cubes
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch ( I used flour)
- Coarse salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup peeled and minced garlic
- 1/4 cup peeled and minced ginger
- 1/2 cup minced scallions (white and green parts)
- Pinch red chile flakes
- 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh cilantro, for serving
Toss the chicken with the cornstarch, a large pinch of salt, and quite a bit of pepper.
Heat the oil in a large nonstick wok over medium-high heat (this is a gentle stir-fry).
Add the garlic, ginger, scallions, and chile flakes if using them and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
Add the chicken and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add the vinegar, sugar and 6 grinds of black pepper.
Boil on high for 3 minutes, or until the sugar has really caramelized, the vinegar has mellowed a bit, and the whole mixture is dark brown and sticky and lovely.
Add the soy sauce, cook for another 30 seconds and serve immediately, served with cilantro.
:: F R I E D R I C E W I T H K A L E A N D S C A L L I O N S::
- 1/2 lb kale, stems discarded
- 1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and very finely minced
- 3 large scallions, cut into 1/8 inch diagonal slices
- 2 1/2 cups cooked brown rice
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce ( I used 2-3 tablespoons, I love soy sauce)
Cut the kale leaves in half lengthwise and then cut crosswise into very thin ribbons (chiffonade). Steam the kale for 7 minutes. Meanwhile, heat the vegetable oil in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes, being careful not to brown the garlic. Raise the heat to medium and add the steamed kale and scallions. Cook for 2 minutes and then add the rice and cook for another 2 minutes, stirring. Add the soy sauce and cook for 30 seconds more.