I learned to cook chicken from my mother. Ergo … I cook my chicken until the pink is gone and it’s nice and moist and tender. And then I cook for about an hour more.
My name is Karen, and I’m a chicken overcooker. Always. You hand me a chicken breast, and I’ll hand you back chicken jerky. And then I’ll ask you to give it back to me so I can cook it some more.
But it’ll be cooked and no one will die and we’ll all continue to live the exciting lives we lead, unless you happen to choke on my chicken. Which is entirely possible, since it isn’t chewable you pretty much have to swallow the whole breast in one go, like a trained seal eats a fish you throw at it.
Because I am chicken challenged, I’ve taken to usually cooking chicken either in thin slices, or small cubes. For some reason I don’t feel the need to overcook my chicken when I do this. Although it’s not a guarantee.
I really do have military precision when it comes to overcooking my chicken. I know the *exact* point I need to go over to make it inedible. It’s a gift.
This cashew chicken recipe includes the much heralded chicken cubes. Enjoy.
2 large chicken breasts
1 Tbsp. (approximately) of corn starch
6 small or 3 large cloves garlic (minced)
8 green onions
1/4 cup Hoisin Sauce
1/4 cup Rice Vinegar (unseasoned)
1/4 cup water
3/4 cup cashews (toasted over medium/low heat in pan)
1 can of mandarin oranges or 1 Sumo orange (optional)
Salt & Pepper
1. Clean and separate green onions into white and green parts.
2. Chop both white and green parts into 1″ sections. If the white part of the green onions is very large around, also slice in half lengthwise.
If you plan to use oranges either used canned mandarin oranges, or if they’re in season Sumo/Suma mandarins which are the sweetest citrus fruit you can buy. If the orange isn’t extremely sweet it will taste too tart against the sweetness of the Hoisin sauce. Sometimes opposites are good in a recipe. This isn’t one of those times.
If you’re using a fresh orange, peel it then cut off all the membranes and section it. Chop into bits.
7. Fry your chicken, the WHITE part of the green onions and garlic over medium/high heat in 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil. You may have to do 2 batches to avoid overcrowding (and therefore steaming) the chicken. Add another Tbsp. of oil for the second batch and remove the first batch to a plate.
The cubes take about 3 minute to cook through but I like to cook them for 7-8 hours. Take your pick.
8. Once all the chicken, onions and garlic are cooked, return it all to the pan. Add 1/4 cup of rice vinegar and cook until evaporated. Add 1/4 cup Hoisin Sauce and 1/4 cup of water. Cook and stir until fully combined.
9. Remove from heat and stir in the green bits of the green onion, toasted cashews and oranges (optional).
10. Serve on a bed of rice.
If you’re making this, you can make as much sauce as you want. Just use equal portions of vinegar, Hoisin Sauce and water. If you want it a bit sweeter, add more Hoisin Sauce. If you want it a bit spicier, throw in a few red pepper flakes.
Go nuts! Make it your own! You’re cookin’! YOU are providing food and therefore life to you and all of those around you! They would shrivel up in the corner sucking on carpet fibres for sustenance if it weren’t for you.
YOU ARE STUCK IN THE KITCHEN COOKING, BUT YOU ARE IMPORTANT DAMMIT!
As you were.