Cooking Light’s Sweet & Sour Chicken
I really, really enjoyed this Sweet & Sour Chicken recipe, and so did Leah and David. The sauce made with pineapple juice was much tastier than any sweet and sour sauce I’ve had at home. The water chestnuts and bell pepper added a satisfying crunch to the mixture, but the pineapple chunks were my favorite. This was very good with canned pineapple, but I imagine fresh pineapple could take it to a whole new level. I think I’ll try that next time.
Sweet & Sour Chicken
Adapted from Cooking Light magazine
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon bottled minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 3/4 cup chopped onion
- 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
- 1 small can sliced water chestnuts, drained
- 1 (15 1/4-ounce) can pineapple chunks in juice, undrained
- 1/3 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons brown sugar
- 1/4 cup dry-roasted chopped cashews
- 1 batch of prepared Baked Brown Rice, recipe follows
Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic, ginger, red pepper, and chicken to pan; sauté 5 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove chicken mixture from pan; set aside.
Add onion, celery, water chestnuts, and bell pepper to pan, and sauté 4 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain pineapple, reserving 1/2 cup juice. Add 1 cup pineapple chunks to pan; cook 30 seconds. Reserve remaining pineapple for another use. Combine the reserved 1/2 cup juice, soy sauce, vinegar, cornstarch, and sugar in a bowl, stirring with a whisk until smooth.
Return chicken mixture to pan. Stir in juice mixture; bring to boil. Cook 1 minute. Sprinkle with cashews. Serve over rice.
Note: Sweet & Sour Chicken is one of my favorite Chinese dishes to order. Normally, the take-out version is made by deep frying the chunks of chicken in a thick batter before adding them to a thick, syrupy sauce. Though this dish was a little different than that version, I didn’t miss the breading one bit. I will definitely make this one again.
Alton Brown’s Baked Brown Rice
This is by far the easiest and best brown rice recipe I’ve come across. It’s literally fool-proof, and after you taste the chewy, nutty texture, you’ll never go back to Minute Rice again.
- 1 1/2 cups brown rice, medium or short grain
- 2 1/2 cups water
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Place the rice into an 8-inch square glass baking dish.
- Bring the water, butter, and salt just to a boil in a kettle or covered saucepan. Once the water boils, pour it over the rice, stir to combine, and cover the dish tightly with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 1 hour.
- After 1 hour, remove cover and fluff the rice with a fork. Serve immediately.