Today’s addition to TastyAsia is an extended variation of the last recipe, motivated mostly by a desire to use up some vegetables I had lying around. It turned out to be really excellent: as you can imagine, the cilantro, chilies, and lime go perfectly with each other. It’s great for a warm summer evening.
For the chicken:
- 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into thin slices
- 1 egg white
- 1 tsp potato flour
- 2 Tbsp peanut oil
- 1 medium shallot, sliced into thin pieces
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2″ ginger, minced
- 1 yellow or orange bell pepper, sliced into chunks similar in size to the chicken slices
- 1 cup cilantro, coarsely sliced
For the sauce:
- Juice of 3 medium or 2 large limes
- 3 Tbsp chicken stock
- 2 Tbsp light soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp Shaoxing rice wine
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- 1 Tbsp sambal oelek (or 1-2 tsp dried chili flakes)
- 1 tsp potato flour in 1 Tbsp chicken stock
- Combine the egg white and potato flour, then add the chicken slices and combine well. Let sit chilled for about 10-15 minutes.
- Cook the chicken with the “velvet” technique: heat 2 quarts water until boiling. Add the chicken and stir well; cook very briefly (only about 1 minute, just until the chicken turns white), then drain into a colander.
- Heat the peanut oil in your wok until it just begins to smoke, then add the chicken. Stir-fry for about 30 seconds then add the shallot and stir-fry for another 30 seconds. Add the garlic and ginger and stir-fry for another 30 seconds.
- Add the lime juice, chicken stock, soy sauce, rice wine, sugar, and sambal oelek; stir well and heat until bubbling.
- Mix the potato flour with 1 Tbsp chicken stock, then add this mixture to the wok. Stir for a few seconds until the sauce thickens. Add the chopped cilantro, stir well, and serve.
Variations: Substitute chopped carrot and asparagus for the chicken. Trust me, it’s excellent. For the vegetarian version, skip steps 1 and 2. Parboil the sliced vegetables for about 1 minute, leaving them crisp, and then drain well and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking. Add them in place of the chicken in step 3 and continue from there.