How to Make Chinese Chicken with Cashews

Now, who can not like Cashew chicken?  The slight crunchiness you get from the onions and peppers mixed with the spicy aroma of the chillies and the delicious sauce made from a few simple things, all goes to make something quite special.  
You certainly don't want any of those jars of ready made sauces they sell in supermarkets, claiming to be 'authentic' recipes.  With a little bit of effort, once you've done it from scratch, you'll be converted.

Chinese Chicken with Cashews


Once you've got a stock of a few basic ingredients there's no end to what you can make.  Even if it's not a true Chinese, Cantonese recipe - who cares as long as it tastes good.
A while back in my post 'Chinese Chicken Curry which, by the way really does taste just like the takeaway!

I wrote about how the chicken you get in a Chinese restaurant always seems to be so tender.  When chicken is stir fried it can sometimes become a little tough if you're not careful.  
The nice lady at the Chinese supermarket told me how they do it.  At first you think it's a little odd but (in for a penny, in for a pound) I gave it a go and now I always marinade my chicken this way before stir frying.  The result is amazing and you should give it a go.

Chinese Chicken with Cashews



This recipe will serve 2 as a main or 4 as a side.

Here's how to do it:
First of all write a note for yourself that says 'RINSE'
2 teaspoons baking soda (bicarb)
2 teaspoons cornflour
2 teaspoons Chinese rice wine (Shaoxing)

2 fat chicken breast fillets - skinless - cut into bite size pieces
Mix together the baking soda, cornflour and rice wine in a bowl and stir in the chicken making sure it all gets coated.
Cover with cling film and put the note reminding you to rinse on top. 
As sure as eggs are eggs if you don't write a note you will forget - resulting in the whole dinner going in the bin as it will be inedible.

Now, for the cashew chicken recipe you will need:
1/2 a tablespoon of soy sauce
2 teaspoons of sesame oil - or vegetable oil


You will also need:
1 or 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 fat garlic cloves - finely chopped
1 large onion - cut into bite size pieces
1 small green bell pepper - cut into bite size pieces
1 small red bell pepper - cut into bite size pieces
4 or 6 dried red chillies - seeded and cut into small pieces
a good handful roasted and salted cashew nuts
3 spring onions - sliced

For the sauce:
2 teaspoon Maggi seasoning
2 tablespoon Ketjap Manis (Indonesian sweet soy sauce) *from any good supermarket
1/2 a teaspoon Fish Sauce *from any good supermarket
1 teaspoon sugar - or to taste
4 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons cornflour


How to do it:
Marinate the chicken for about 20 minutes.
Rinse the chicken and rinse it well - remember you must do this because of the baking soda or you won't be able to eat it.
Dry it well with paper towel and put it back into a clean bowl.  Stir in a little soy sauce and a little sesame oil, or vegetable oil.  Give it a good stir.

Mix together the sauce ingredients in a small bowl or cup and set aside.

When you're ready to cook, heat up your wok with just a tiny amount of oil (as you've already got some stirred through the chicken)
and stir fry the chicken until it's almost cooked. 
Remove and set aside.

Wipe the wok clean and add a tablespoon or two of oil.  When it's heated up nicely, add the garlic, onion, and peppers
Stir-fry for a few minutes and then throw in the chilies.
By now it will all smell delicious, put the chicken back in along with the cashew nuts.
Stir-fry the chicken for just a minute.  Give the sauce mixture you made earlier a stir as the sugar will have sunk to the bottom.

Pour in the sauce stirring all the while.  Soon as the chicken is cooked through, throw in the spring onion and serve immediately with some rice.

7 comments

  1. I haven't tried doing my chicken like this yet, but am planning on it soon! Nice recipe Jan, I do love cashews.

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  2. This looks and sounds amazing. I'll be trying this for sure. Hope I can find some of the ingredients here!

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  3. This looks like restaurant food - wonderful Jan! Full of goodness too. Lucie x

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  4. Looking forward to trying this. How long should you marinate the chicken for?

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  5. Hi Anon - I'll update this post as I should have said how long. About 20 minutes will be fine.

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  6. Hi Jan - we had this tonight. Delish. We had to tweek it slightly as hubby is Gluten-Free. Tried the chicken a different way - http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/5140/chicken-stirfry-in-4-easy-steps

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  7. Hi Jan - We had this tonight. Delish. I had to tweek it slightly as hubby is gluen-free. Cooked the chicken like this - http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/5140/chicken-stirfry-in-4-easy-steps.

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Thanks for taking the time to comment - much appreciated.
Cheers
Jan

PS: I hate having to do this but anyone trying to leave links in their comments please save yourself the trouble as they will NOT be published....
Thank you, you know who you are :)

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