Monday, October 20, 2008

Black Bean Sauce Chicken with Onion

Super duper basic chicken stir fry. This recipe uses very few odd ingredients. I'm writing on a weeknight so no time for an introduction--I'll get straight to the recipe.

This recipe is from "The Breath of a Wok" by Grace Young and Alan Richardson. If you're interested in how to cook in a wok, this is the book for you. Stir-frying, steaming, smoking, this book shows you how to use your wok in a multitude of ways. Although I've mostly only cooked the stir-fry recipes, they've all been dependable and delicious. Recommended, although the scope of this book is rather narrow. Definitely an enthusiast level cookbook but, if you're into the subject matter, it's fantastic. Does that make sense? I hope so.


1 pound skinless, boneless chicken thigh cut into bite sized pieces

1 tablespoon of soy sauce plus an extra dash

1 teaspoon of Shaoxing rice wine or dry sherry

.5 teaspoon sugar

.5 teasoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 tablespoon fermented black beans, rinsed

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1 teaspoon minced ginger

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

4 small whole shallots, peeled (about 1/2 cup) (I used large pieces of diced onion)

1/3 cup chicken broth (or veggie broth, I used water and it was fine)

1 green onion, chopped

Combine the chicken, tablespoon of soy sauce, rice wine, sugar, salt and white pepper in a bowl. Mix to combine. Add the corn starch and mix. The mixture should be slightly sticky.

In a small bowl, combine the black beans, garlic, ginger and dash of soy sauce. Mash with a fork.

Heat up a wok over high heat. Toss in a few tablespoons of oil. Add the chicken mixture and spread flat. Allow the chicken to brown. Depending on your heat source, temperature of the chicken, how long you allowed the wok to heat up etc., this might take a few minutes. When brown, stir fry for a few minutes, just so the chicken changes color on all sides.

Toss in the black bean mixture and onion (or shallot). Stir-fry for a few minutes. Toss in the broth and bring to a boil. You'll see it thicken and give the rest of the dish a glossy sheen. Toss in the green onion, give it a quick stir and you're done!

Time-15 minutes

Cost-3 bucks for the chicken, 1 dollar for the rest. Will serve 2 as a single course stir-fry dinner or more depending on how many other dishes you serve.

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