M&L inspired-Kung-Pao Chicken!

Heyyyylooo foodies,

Can you believe that this is my first post of the new year??????? Unbelievable!

I had my Semester-end exams going on, which were God-oh-God so stressing and I am glad that I am finally done with them. I have a nice 10 day break before the next sem starts and I plan to spend it making lots of interesting dishes to put up on my blog. Fingers crossed!

Coming to today’s recipe, it is a result of a strong, strong inspiration. A few days ago, my friends and I went to a popular Chinese restaurant near our college in Dublin city center called M&L. It is very well known for their fantastic variety of yummy asian food and if you are in Dublin, you should definitely try it out. I have now visited it 3 times in the recent past and 2 out of those three times, I have ordered their Kung-pao chicken. OMG! The blogging term- ‘Foodgasm’ will describe the feeling very well. It is insanely delicious, I tell you.

Eversince I had it for the first time, I was itching to recreate it at home and thus, as soon as the exams ended, I raced to the supermarket to get the ingredients for making the Kung pao chicken. I looked at many recipes on the internet and matched the taste in my mind with the ingredients I could see in my pictures to make my version today. Turned out prettty well, if I can say so myself.

One tip that I would like to stress if you want to make this at home would be- if you are okay with indulging in fried food from time to time, then do deep-fry the chicken for this dish. Chicken needs to be crispy and fried for the best results instead of shallow frying in in less oil. It just won’t taste the same according to me.

Also,don’t add too many peanuts to your chicken as it is a heavy Protein that fills the tummy very very fast.So, a lot of peanuts will turn you dish very heavy on your stomach.

Lastly, standard tip for making Chinese food always stands- be careful while adding/adjust the salt to your dish as the Chinese sauces are quite salty themselves. In this dish, there’s chicken stock as well..just be aware of the salt content at every stage.

There is just so much flavour in Kung-pao chicken that it’s a saucy, delicious carnival for your taste-buds in each bite. Crispy chicken coated with shiny, glazed sauce, ladled over hot rice on a Saturday with a chilled beer and a movie of your choice with your family or friends…aah life can’t get better than that, can it??

Give it a go and enjoy guys! Have a great week ahead! xx

Ingredients:

4 Chicken breasts

1 bunch Scallions/Spring onions- White and Green part, washed and chopped

1/4 cup roasted Peanuts

4-5 Shallots, sliced (optional)

1 tbsn finely chopped Garlic

1 tbsn finely chopped Garlic

1 tbsn Sichuan peppers (lightly roasted)

6-7 dry Red chillies

Oil for frying and 2 tbsn for the dish

For the Marinade:

1 tbsn dark Soy sauce

1 tbsn light Soy sauce

1 tsp Cornflour

A pinch of Baking powder

1 tbsn Chinese wine vinegar or any vinegar of your choice

A pinch of Salt & pepper each

For the Sauce:

1/2 cup Chicken stock

4-5 tbsn light Soy sauce

1 tbsn Hoisin sauce

2 tbsn dark soy sauce

1/2 tsp Sesame oil

2 tsp Brown sugar

1 tbsn Chinese vinegar

1 tsp Cornflour for thickening

Note- *Chinese cooking is always done on high heat!*

Method:

Dice the chicken breasts into small cubes and transfer to a large bowl.

Combine all the ingredients under Marinade to the chicken in the bowl. Mix well, cover with a cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

In a small bowl, combine the ingredients under the sauce list and mix till the sugar dissolves. Set aside.

When you are ready to make your chicken, heat your skillet or a wok.

Deep fry the marinated chicken cubes until golden brown and crispy. Transfer onto a plate lined with a kitchen towel to soak off excess oil.

Preserve 2 tbsn of the oil in the wok and remove the rest. Use or dispose as needed.

To the hot oil, add your chopped ginger and garlic. Do not brown them. Just fry for a couple of seconds.

Add the dried chilles and sichuan peppers. Fry for 6-7 seconds.

Add your scallion whites and greens, plus sliced shallots. Cook on high heat for around a minute.

Pour the prepared sauce mix in the wok and mix well. Let bubble for 2-3 minutes until it thickens because of the cornflour. If the sauce still seems thin, add 1 tsp cornflour more diluted in 1/4th cup water and bubble some more.

Add the cooked chicken and peanuts. Toss until well-coated. Adjust the salt and pepper as required.

Serve hot with egg fried rice or boiled rice. Enjoy!

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