Michael and I both enjoy Chinese food, but I don’t make it at home very often. Instead, we usually get it from the (delicious) Chinese restaurant down the street.
Last week, I decided to try my own hand at making Chinese food, and I started with this orange chicken. The recipe that I used is supposed to be a copycat version of orange chicken from Panda Express. While I don’t know how accurate that claim is, I can tell you that this recipe is so delicious that I’ve already made it twice.
For the chicken:
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 1 pound)
- 1/2 cup cornstarch
- 1/4 cup rice flour or all-purpose flour
- Oil for frying
In a large bowl, combine the egg, salt, pepper, and 1 Tbsp oil. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces, add to the egg mixture, and stir to coat. In a second bowl, mix together the cornstarch and flour. Transfer the chicken, a few pieces at a time, from the egg wash into the flour mixture. Toss to completely coat each piece.
Heat a generous 1/2 inch of oil in a deep skillet or saucepan over medium heat. Add the chicken, in single-layer batches, and fry until cooked through (about 3-4 minutes on each side). Remove to a paper-towel lined plate to drain. Set aside.
For the orange sauce and broccoli:
- 1 Tbsp of fresh ginger root, minced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2-3 green onions, thinly sliced
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/2 tsp sesame oil
- 3 Tbsp of rice vinegar, divided
- 5 Tbsp soy sauce
- 5 Tbsp sugar
- Zest and juice from one orange (about 2 Tbsp zest and 5 Tbsp juice)
- 2 tsp cornstarch dissolved in 1/4 cup cold water
- 1 head of fresh broccoli, cut into florets
Combine the ginger, garlic, green onion, red pepper flakes, sesame oil, and 1 Tbsp of rice vinegar in a large skillet and saute for 1 minute, or until fragrant. In a small bowl, stir together the remaining rice vinegar (2 Tbsp) with the soy sauce, sugar, orange zest and juice. Add the sauce to the ginger-garlic mixture and bring to a boil.
Add the fried chicken to the sauce and stir to coat. Add the dissolved cornstarch and simmer until sauce is thickened, stirring often.
Meanwhile, steam the broccoli florets until crisp-tender. Serve the orange chicken over broccoli and rice.