This is one of my kids favorite meal, even for my 5-year-old picky eater which is surprising as it contains a good amount of ginger and garlic.
This recipe recommends that you use trimmed chicken thighs for its flavor, but I prefer to use chicken breasts as they’re easier to handle and won’t need to be deep fried. I rather cut the chicken into very thin 1 1/2 inch or 2 inch slices and shallow fry them in 3 tablespoons oil. The trick is that the pieces need to be very thin so that they pan fry very quickly.
You can trim and steam or boil broccoli for a few minutes as a side dish. When I plate this meal, I usually add the orange sauce on the broccoli.
You can start cooking the rice just before cooking the chicken.
Make sure that you grate the zest of the orange and cut the strips of orange peel before juicing the oranges.
The chicken can easily be substituted with tofu to make this a vegetarian meal.
Serves 4 – Adapted from Cooking at Home with America’s Test Kitchen
- 1 1/2 pounds chicken breasts, cut thin and into 1 1/2 inch pieces
- 3/4 cup chicken broth
- 3/4 cup orange juice
- 1 1/2 teaspoons grated orange zest
- 8 strips of orange peel (about 2 inches long 1/2 inch wide)
- 6 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 3 medium garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons cold water
For the coating:
- 3 egg whites
- 1 cup cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
- 3 tablespoons peanut oil plus more as needed for frying
You can grate the orange using a microplane grater to get the zest.
The easiest way to cut the orange peel is by using a potato peeler.
First start by preparing the sauce: In a large saucepan, whisk together the chicken broth, orange juice, grated zest, vinegar, soy sauce, sugar, garlic, ginger, and cayenne if using, until the sugar is dissolved.
Take 3/4 cup of the sauce, and pour it in a ziploc bag along with the chicken. make sure that all the pieces of chicken are coated. Refrigerate 30 to 60 minutes but not any longer. Even 15 minutes will do if you’re in a hurry.
Bring the sauce to boil. In a small bowl, stir the cornstarch and the water,
then whisk it into the sauce.
Simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 1 minute, until the sauce is thick and shiny.
Take it off the heat and add the orange peel.
To cook the chicken, add the egg whites onto a pie plate (or shallow dish) and beat with a fork until frothy.
In another pie plate (or shallow dish), whisk the cornstarch, baking soda, and cayenne if using.
Drain the chicken in a colander then pat it dry with paper towels.
Place half of the chicken in the egg whites making sure they’re all coated,
then take them out and add them to the cornstarch mixture, turning them to coat.
Place the chicken pieces on a wire rack over a baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining chicken.
In a large skillet, heat 3 tablespoons of oil on high medium high heat. Add the chicken pieces in a single layer,
then flip them after a few minutes. Since the chicken is cut thinly, they will cook quickly, only a few minutes on each side. Put the cooked pieces on a paper towel-lined plate. Repeat with the remaining pieces, add 1 tablespoon of oil if needed.
Reheat the sauce until simmering, the add the chicken pieces. Gently stir until they’re all coated. Serve with the broccoli and rice.