Sunday, March 11, 2012

Chicken and Broccoli Stir Fry

Tony's molars are coming in, and it's been an exhausting couple of days. I haven't had much time for blogging (hell, catching 5 minutes for a quick shower is a huge accomplishment for me on some days!), but I've tried to keep up with healthy cooking. And by healthy, I mean cheap, easy, and not fried. This recipe fit the bill for all of my stringent requirements, and it was quite tasty. Not to mention, SO much better for you than anything you would order at a Chinese take-out place. As a testament to my laziness, I skipped the step for chopping up fresh broccoli florets and simply grabbed a bag of frozen broccoli at the grocery store. Worked just fine, and cut the prep time by approximately 5 minutes. Hey, I'll take it.
Adapted from Food Network

Ingredients:
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast (about 2 breasts), sliced against the grain
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-inch piece peeled fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dry sherry
  • 1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
  • About 1/3 cup chicken broth or water
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 5 cups broccoli, trimmed sliced stalks (about 1/4-inch thick) and medium florets (keep the 2 cuts separate)
  • Serving suggestion: rice
Directions:

1. Toss the chicken with about half the garlic and ginger, the soy sauce, sugar, 1 teaspoon of the cornstarch, 1 teaspoon of the salt, the sherry, and the sesame oil in a bowl. Marinate at room temperature for 15 minutes.
2. Mix the remaining cornstarch with the 1/3 cup broth or water. 

3. Heat a large nonstick skillet over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil and heat. Add the broccoli stems, and stir-fry for 1 minute.
4. Add the florets and the remaining garlic, ginger, 2 tablespoons of water, and season with 1/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper, to taste. Stir-fry until the broccoli is bright green but still crisp, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
5. Get the skillet good and hot again, and then heat 2 more tablespoons oil. Add the chicken and stir-fry until the chicken loses its raw color and gets a little brown, 3 to 4 minutes.
6. Return the broccoli to the pan and toss to heat through.
7. Stir in the reserved cornstarch mixture and bring to a boil to thicken. Add more water if need to thin the sauce, if necessary. Taste and season with salt and pepper, if you like.

8. Mound the stir-fry on a serving platter or divide among 4 plates; serve with rice. 

Cook's Note: The garlic and ginger can be chopped together in a mini chopper to save time. (Since everyone knows I am all about saving time, I did just that).

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