It has been a quiet 10 days without blogging. Although I don’t celebrate Diwali it has been fun to check messages and wishes on social media. This year I will be posting my Christmas recipes a little sooner than I normally do, so do come back for new recipes that I will be sharing! Today’s recipe is something that my family thoroughly enjoys whenever I make it. It is infact, my son’s favourite. I do not know a lot about the history of General Tao or why this chicken is his favourite. Wikipedia mentions his name as General Tso but this recipe is also popularly called as ‘Tao’. I came across this recipe a while ago in The Mainland China Cookbook but I adapted it according to our tastes. Also, the book was a little difficult to decipher so I have adapted it quite a bit. So here’s presenting General Tao’s Favourite Chicken! Tastes best when served fresh and piping hot!
A favourite item on Mainland China's menu can now be made in the comfort of your home! Tastes best when served piping hot with a bowl of egg fried rice!
- 300-350 grams boneless chicken
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon light soy sauce
- 4 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon white pepper powder
- salt to taste
- 3 dry red chillies broken
- 1/2 inch ginger finely chopped
- 2 fat cloves of garlic finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
- 1/2 cup chicken stock or 1 stock cube dissolved in 1/2 of hot water plus extra 1/2 cup if you want more gravy
- 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon chilli flakes adjust to taste
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon of water
- 1 teaspoon white or red wine optional
- 1/2 teaspoon rice vinegar or regular white vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon or just a few grains of sugar optional but recommended
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1-2 teaspoons crushed peanuts without skin
Wash the chicken and cut it into small bite-sized pieces. Don't make them too chunky/big as they will take time to fry especially after being coated with the marinade that has egg in it. Pat dry with a kitchen towel/tissue.
In a bowl place all the ingredients mentioned under 'for the marinade' and whisk it together. Add the chicken pieces and mix well. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes
Heat the vegetable oil in a wok/deep kadai and when it begins to smoke slightly, add the chicken and stir-fry. Make sure that the wok has been heated very well or else instead of frying, the chicken will release water. If in doubt, cook the chicken in 2-3 batches. When the chicken has turned golden, remove on a plate
Drain off the extra oil from the oil and wipe clean. Put it back on the heat. It should be smoking hot.
Add the broken red chillies and dry roast them for a few seconds, then add the chopped ginger & garlic and dry roast them too. Toss in the oyster sauce and mix everything. Add the chicken stock and bring the mixture to a boil
Now add the dark soy sauce, chilli flakes and check seasoning. Return the fried chicken pieces to the wok and add the dissolved cornstarch paste in parts until you get the desired thickness. Add extra stock to adjust the thickness and quantity of the gravy.
Finish with the sesame oil, vinegar, sugar and wine if using. Turn off the heat
Garnish with the crushed peanuts and serve hot