Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Chicken chop suey
The weather is starting to warm up around here and for me that means that I start to want lighter dinners. As I mentioned in my last post, it's a difficult time of year for cooking -- no fresh local vegetables available yet and most of our preserved goods from last year's harvest are gone. We did start some seeds this past weekend as well as potted a few new herbs. We don't have room for a large garden, but we are doing radishes, lettuces, green beans, tomatoes, and a bunch of herbs in containers. I can't wait for the radishes to come up. We found heirloom French breakfast radishes and I'm hoping they are cute and tasty! They should be ready to harvest in just over 20 days.
But, back to this meal. I've made this dish inspired by a similar recipe at Brooklyn Farm Girl a couple of times now and we really like it. This time I used a green pepper, but last time I used some baby bok choy in its place - both were good. You can use both or pack as many veggies into this stir-fry as you want. Chinese cabbage, bamboo shoots, and bean sprouts would all be good in this, too. Stir-fry is one of my favorite warm-weather weeknight meals. They are a cinch to put together and they are so versatile. Plus I love making a healthier and cheaper version of take-out foods at home. This dish will serve four people.
Chicken chop suey
about 1-1/4 lbs. boneless and skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
1/3 cup soy sauce, preferably fermented (or low sodium)
2 heaped tablespoons honey
3 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
2 heaped teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon coconut oil (or other cooking oil)
1 green bell pepper, cut into bite-sized pieces
2 ribs celery, cut into bit-sized pieces
5 scallions, greens and white sliced and separated
about 4 oz. shittake mushroom caps, sliced
1 can (8 oz.) sliced water chestnuts, drained
1 cup white rice, cooked to package directions, for serving
Place the chicken in a bowl and set aside. In a liquid measuring cup or medium bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, honey, and garlic until well-combined. Pour about 2 tablespoons onto the chicken. Then whisk the cornstarch into the remaining sauce along with 1/2 cup of water and set aside.
After all your vegetables are prepped, heat the oil in a wok or other large skillet. When hot, add the chicken and toss frequently until it is almost cooked through. Toss in the pepper and celery and cook, stirring often, for about 2-3 minutes. Stir in the scallion whites, mushrooms, and water chestnuts.
Stir in the sauce and let it start to bubble. Then, reduce the heat to low. Continue to stir and cooks while the sauce thickens, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in the scallion greens and serve immediately with white rice.
What was I cooking one year ago?: stir-fried squid with baby bok choy
Two years ago?: carrot cake pancakes
Three?: Brazilian shrimp stew
4?: Shepherd's pie