Is there a Chinese restaurant anywhere in North America that doesn’t serve orange chicken with dried peppers? No, I didn’t think so. What varies among those eateries is the quality of the stuff. Your average Chinese buffet joint is generally the Golden Corral of orange chicken, meaning, well, that it’s all about the bland. The recipe you see here is what you need to get a great take on orange chicken at home, with a heat level targeted to your tastes.
Orange Chicken with Sundried Pepper Ingredients
- 4 each red dried chile peppers (Asian preferred)
- 2 each oranges
- 1/4 cup light molasses
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tsp cornstarch
- 3/4 cup flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp baking powder
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1 tsp chile oil
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 1 1/2 tsp chopped ginger
- 2 cups cooked white rice
- 3 cups vegetable oil
Zest one of the oranges. Be sure to remove only the colored part of the skin. Avoid the white pith unless you like a nasty bitter aftertaste in your food.
Juice the oranges and combine the OJ with the molasses, soy sauce and cornstarch in a small bowl.
Heat the three cups of vegetable oil in a wok over medium-high heat until the oil hits 375°F on a deep fry thermometer.
Combine the flour, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl. Whisk in the water to form a smooth batter. Coat the chicken with it evenly.
Cook the battered chicken in thirds for four minutes or until the chicken is golden brown and no longer pink in the center, stirring occasionally to break up pieces with spoon.
Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon to a tray lined with paper towels.
Pour off all the oil in the wok.
Reheat the wok over medium high heat until hot; add the chili oil, orange zest, dried chili peppers, garlic and ginger. Stir-fry for about thirty seconds to a minute or until fragrant.
Stir the cornstarch mixture, and add it to the wok. Cook until sauce boils and thickens. Return c hicken to wok, and mix well. Serve over rice.