General Tso’s Chicken, with its battered chicken in a sweet and sour sauce, laced with chilli, is apparently, America’s favourite Chinese takeout dish.
- 500g (1.1 lb) skinless chicken thighs
- 10 dried red Sichuan chillies (or any non smoked dried red chillies)
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2.5cm (1″) ginger
- 2 spring onions (scallions)
- 1 tsp sesame seeds
- 250ml (1 cup) vegetable oil to fry the chicken (more if necessary)
- 1 large egg white
- 1 Tbsp light soy sauce
- 1 tsp dark soy sauce
- 2 Tbsp Shaoxing wine (or regular rice wine or dry sherry)
- 1 Tbsp vodka (optional)
- 2 Tbsp cornflour (cornstarch in the US)
- 35g (1/4 cup) rice flour
- 35g (1/4 cup) cornflour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp ground white pepper
- 125ml (1/2 cup) chicken stock
- 2 Tbsp concentrated tomato paste
- 2 Tbsp tomato ketchup
- 1 Tbsp Shaoxing wine (or dry sherry)
- 1 Tbsp rice vinegar (or regular clear vinegar)
- 1 Tbsp dark soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp light soy sauce
- 4 Tbsp white sugar
- 1 Tbsp cornflour (cornstarch)
- Cut the chicken thighs into bitesize pieces.
- Place all the marinade ingredients into a bowl and add the chicken. Coat the chicken pieces thoroughly and leave to marinade for 20 minutes.
- Chop up the garlic and ginger finely. You could also grate the ginger if you prefer.
- Slice the spring onions (scallions) in small rings separating the white and green in two bowls.
- Place the dry coat ingredients onto a flat plate and mix thoroughly.
- Add all the sauce ingredients in a bowl, whisk with a fork to mix, and set aside.
- Heat the 250ml (1 cup) of oil in a wok or deep frying pan on high heat until it’s hot and just smoking. Lower the heat to medium high (that means about 3/4 of the way).
- Take the marinated chicken pieces, and dip them into the dry coat one at a time. Shake off excess flour and carefully lower it into the hot oil. Don’t drop it in, you might get splashed with the hot oil. Use a spatula to lower the chicken in, if it worries you. Don’t overcrowd, fry 5-6 pieces at a time.
- Cook the chicken for 3 minutes, turning, if not completely covered by the oil. When done, drain on a plate lined with kitchen paper.
- When all the chicken pieces are cooked, pour out all the oil but 1 tablespoon of it and place back on the stove and lower the heat to medium.
- Add the chillies, garlic, ginger and white spring onions (scallions) and fry for 30 seconds.
- Stir the sauce that you had set aside earlier with a spoon, as the cornflour would have settled to the bottom. Now add this sauce to the wok and bring to a boil, stirring as it thickens (because of the cornflour).
- Add the chicken pieces and stir for 30 seconds, still on medium heat, and coat the chicken pieces thoroughly.
- Take off the heat and stir in the sesame oil.
- Dish out onto a warm plate and scatter the green spring onion (scallions) slices and sesame seeds all over and serve immediately.
- Category: Main Course
- Cuisine: American Chinese