Kung Pao Chicken

11:35 AM

One of the recurring questions that comes back to me again and again everyday is what to cook. With my growing interest in food and nutrition the next idea to ponder on is how to make it nutritious and balanced for the family. Over the past couple of months I have found a overall fall in our collective energy level. I know I feel low, slow and sluggish all the time because of many reasons and some I know I have to live with all my life but what scares me is the overall health of the kids.

Though I try to give them a balanced meal but with my increasing work pressure I lack consistency. I try to give them soaked nuts and kefir everyday but the problem is I need to bear the sole responsibility of remembering every chore. No matter how many times I remind my househelp to give them yogurt at lunch time she could never remember it, same with fruits in the evening, preparing salad for dinner and numerous other things. Add to that the erratic weather and it's effect on their little body. While the daughter just recovered from a nasty cough and cold the son is down with same today. Though I see the same situation in every household now a days still I thought of reaching out to you and hear how you deal with the same.

Please share how you ensure optimum health for your family...I need some inspiration and easy ideas.

Here is a recipe of Kung Pao Chicken, as the name suggest it's a stir fry dish with chicken, peppers, veggies and pea nuts. The dish originated in Sichuan province and includes sichuan peppercorns as the main source of heat and is quite spicy. But I wasnt lucky to taste the original version rather my first taste of this dish was in America last year and in spite of it being very sweet for my palate, I surprisingly ended up enjoying it with a plate of jasmine rice.

Luckily after searching for an authentic recipe I found this one which sounded quite promising with it's low use of oil. Obviously I tweaked it a little bit to add more veggies like the one from Panda Express.

Kung Pao Chicken

Boneless chicken breast: 2
Zuchini: 1
Red pepper: 1 large
Onion: 1 large/ Spring onion: a small bunch; white part only
Garlic: 5-6 pods
Peanuts: handful
Dry red chillies: 3-4
Salt: as per taste
Pepper powder: 1/3 tsp
Dark Soy sauce: 1 tsp+2 tsp
White vinegar: 1 tsp+1 tsp
sugar: 1/2 tsp
Cornflour: 3 tbsp+1 tsp
White oil: 2 tbsp+1 tsp
dry red chillies: 5-6
Egg: 1 small (you wont require all of it)
Chicken stock or water: 3 tbsp

Cut the chicken in small bite size pieces (1/2"). Marinate with egg (I used half, 3 tbsp cornflour, 1 tsp soy sauce, 1 tsp oil, salt and pepper. Mix and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. 
During this time wash and cut the zuchini and red pepper in small 1/4" cubes. keep aside.
Cut the onion or white parts of the spring onions in small pieces.
Finely mince the garlic.
Mix chicken stock. 2 tbsp soy sauce, 1 tsp vinegar and 1/2 tsp sugar. Mix and keep aside.

Dry roast the nuts till crisp and keep aside.
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a non stick pan. If you are using a normal pan you might need more oil. Using your hand drop the chicken pieces and fry them on medium heat for 3-4 miutes till they turn golden on all sides. Take out and keep aside.
In the same pan add one more tbsp of oil. Add the dry red chillies and stir them till they turn colour. Place the garlic and onion and stir on high till they start to release the aroma. Now add the zuchini and pepper with a pinch of salt and pepper powder. Mix and cook on high for a minute. The zuchini will start releasing water. 
stir on high and add the sauce mix. Fold to combine and let it come to boil. Check the seasoning and iff needed add more soy or vinegar. 
When the sauce is boiling add the chicken and fold. Mix 1 tsp cornflour with 2 tsp water. Pour in the pan and mix. This will thicken the sauce and will create a nice glazy coating sauce. Finally mix in the nuts and give it stir. 

Switch off and serve hot with fried rice or steamed white rice.

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  1. Excellent recipe!I am pretty sure this tastes awesome from my experience of almost same dish but replaced by cashew nuts.
    I will try your version with peanuts now.
    Cheers for sharing.

  2. Just control korte parchina..ki darun dekhte hoyeche

  3. Chicken with veggies and nut..sounds great..looks beautiful and this dish is healthy too.Will make it this weekend. Thanks for the recipe Sayantani..

  4. Chicken with nuts and veggies like zuchini sounds interesting. Pic looks so beautiful very well presented


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