I have been looking for new Asian recipes to try out. I love Asian food but find at home I tend to cook the same dishes over and over. With summer on the way here in Australia and arriving briefly last week when it as a toasty 36C (97F) (what happened to Spring!) I am on the lookout for tasty new stir-fries that are cook quickly so the stove is not warming up the house any more than necessary.
I am a huge fan of garlic and this garlic chicken from Emily of Fuss Free Cooking looked delicious. The first time I made it though it was a bit of a disaster. Reducing it to a serve for one was not very successful. I made it in my fairly large work and there wasn’t enough marinade to cope with the large pan. It just evaporated away. Why I used my big wok I am not sure as one of my top tips for cooking for one is to use the right sized equipment.
My other mistake may have been to use white rather than black pepper as my pepper grinder doesn’t like to produce the amount of pepper this recipe required. It came out very spicy indeed. I have done a bit of research on the interwebs into the difference between black and white pepper and there seems to be quite a bit of mixed information (what a surprise!) Some say black is hotter, others white and some say they taste the same with white being used for aesthetic purposes in white dishes and others that they are completely different. Too confusing. Regardless, for me the amount of pepper in the original recipe seems like a lot and that was after I had trimmed it a bit.
Since my first attempt I have adapted the recipe slightly, adding chicken stock to make more of a sauce as I like to have plenty of sauce oozing in to my rice. I cut back on the pepper but I still found this chicken had quite a kick to it but not in a bad way. I used to be very chili tolerant and you would have thought that as I get older my tastebuds get a bit worn out and less sensitive to heat but there is no way I could include the equivalent of what was in the original recipe. Maybe I am becoming wimpy in my old age. Add or subtract pepper as you like. That is one of the joys of cooking for one. There is no one else you have to please.
Aside from the overnight marinating this is a super quick dish to make. The preparation for the marinading takes all of 5 minutes and then when it comes time to cook there is a little bit more prep – no more than 5 minutes and then it all cooks in under 15 minutes. My kind of meal.
I had my chicken with rice but with the addition of the stock to create more of a sauce you could also have this with rice noodles. Just following the cooking instructions on the noodle packet – mine normally just need soaking and then toss the drained noodles in to the chicken at the end to make sure they are warm and everything is well coated.
- 130g of skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into bite sized pieces
- 1 tsp of minced garlic (equal to one clove)
- 1 tbs of brown sugar, firmly packed
- Juice from half a lime (about 1/2 a tbs)
- 1 tsp of white pepper
- 1/4 tsp of salt
- 1 tsp of peanut oil
- 1 tsp of coriander (cilantro), shredded
- 1/3 of a red chili, sliced
- 1/4 cup of chicken stock
- Combine the chicken, garlic, sugar, lime, pepper and salt in a bowl and pop in the fridge to marinate overnight.
- Heat the peanut oil in a wok or skillet on a medium-high heat.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade and set the marinate aside
- Add the chicken to the wok and cook for about 5-8 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
- Toss the marinade into the wok and coat the chicken well.
- Add the chili and coriander to the wok and cook for about a minute.
- Add the stock and bring to the boil.
- Serve with rice or noodles