Friday, 5 August 2011

Peppers and Cashew Chicken (not-your average) Stirfry

Following my 101, here's a very typical chinese stir-fry, with the very seasonal sweet bell peppers and cashews for a nutty crunch. This was done using all the "secrets" to a great chinese stirfry that I've fshare here. This is not your (or my) average throw-in-too-much-into-a-small-nonstick-skillet stirfry. Nowhere near the tzechar stalls in Singapore yet, but definitely really good, and I'll get there one day I hope.

Peppers and Cashew Chicken Stirfry
serves 2
250g chicken (I used thighs, probably a better idea to use breast if you really want to test the effect of velveting)
1 handful of toasted cashew nuts
1/2 small red bell pepper, chopped into even pieces
1/2 small green bell pepper, chopped into even pieces
5-6 slices of ginger
2 tbsp palm/coconut/groundnut oil

For marinating
1/2 tsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp unrefined cane sugar
1/2 tsp chinese shaoxing rice wine 
1/2 tsp water (or stock)
1/2 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp tapioca/cornstarch

For sauce
1 tsp oyster sauce
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp chinese shaoxing rice wine
1 tbsp stock
white pepper

1. Prepare the chicken by slicing across the fibres into even-sized cubes. 阿基師 has a tip of slicing horizontally across the thick part of a chicken breast fillet first, kind of butterfly-ing it, so you can get chicken of even thickness. Marinate the chicken for about 10 min.
2. Heat wok to highest heat, add 1 tbsp of oil to the wok. When hot, sear the chicken. Push aside.
3. Add another tbsp of oil. Add ginger, followed by the peppers and bottom thirds of the spring onion and stir-fry (keep everything moving or they will burn!) until you can smell them.
4. Add the chicken back with the toasted cashews.
5. Lastly, add the sauce, continue stir-frying till everything is cooked and coated and the sauce slightly thickens. Serve immediately with rice.

Try this! You'll be surprised how tender and flavoursome the chicken is! Perfect against the crunchy cashews and peppers. No overcooked vegetables, just nicely seared, the trinity of soy sauce, sesame oil, and rice wine making everything smell so Chinese-kitchen-yummy. No MSG either, or overly sweet and gooey jam-like sauce. This is real chinese food!


  1. Oh Yum! This looks utterly delicious. I love that you put cashew nuts... they're my favourite!
    I prefer using thighs any time. I think the thighs have more flavours and cheaper :)

  2. Agree with Michael and you, thighs are more luscious (I'm talking about chicken) ;P
    It's the simplest of Chinese cookery that's just damn hard to master I reckon. I can see how sticky your sauces are (subtly hidden). It must be damn hearty and yummy!

  3. These two Indonesian boys sure do know how to comment, each with their own unique style! Anyway, I was wondering what you meant by velveting until I read your previous post...ahhh, got it. Love your simple stir fry, simple is always the best!

  4. I could eat this right now! looks amazing, I love Oriental food in general. Excellent recipe!

  5. this looks so good, it's one of my all time favourite dishes and I will be bookmarking this recipe... can't wait to make it, so thank you xx

  6. Looks really good! I love it when the meat is velveted ... so silky and smooth when it hits the tongue! Yum! I also love your choice of veg ... bright and crunchy tender crisp. Mmmm!

  7. Fabulous stir fry! I've never velveted meat before!

  8. Thanks! (:

    Michael: Agree. On both counts. (cashews and chicken), although i also go nuts for walnuts and macadamias.

    Pierre: HAHAHA.

    Dom and Joanne: let me know how it goes if you do make it, especially with the velveting technique (:

  9. looks really good! i love a quick stirfry

  10. I'm going to make this soon, but will have to use chicken legs and peanuts instead. I love that it's only for two! I am constantly making way more food than I can eat. One can only eat the same soup, beans or curry so many meals in a row...

  11. I made this yesterday even though it was modified. The arrowroot powder worked fine for velveting the chicken. Great recipe, I loved it!

  12. claire: thanks

    katie: I know what you mean, I do just halve recipes quite often though, seems to work fine most of the time. cool, I'll have to keep that in mind! TAnd I'm glad you like it (: (: (: