Chinese Pepper Chicken

 

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 I LOVE Chinese food. Well…….. I LOVE food period 🙂 I was always afraid of making Chinese food at home, because it looks so complicated ….However, I’ve started to notice recently, that Chinese food from our local take out places and buffets is really greasy. Even though it has some vegetables, it is usually deep fried. Many Chinese restaurants also add flavor enhancers like MSG. I used to be a big fan of a Chinese buffets because I could try all different kinds of dishes. Since I have a baby though, sometimes it is hard to go out anywhere. So I started experimenting with Chinese dishes myself. I’ve realized that cooking Chinese food at home is not really that hard. And the best part of it, is that you can control the amount of oil and sodium and the quality of ingredients you put in your food.

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Chinese food is not very popular in Poland. Polish people have many misconceptions about Chinese cuisine. They think all the food is made out of cats and dogs ;). My grandmother would never take Chinese food in her mouth. The first time I ate Chinese food myself,  was as a teenager , when my father brought it from Warsaw. When I was growing up in Poland, Chinese restaurants were not very popular. Eating out was not a part of a polish culture period. Polish people like home food, made from the scratch, preferably from fresh products grown in their own garden.

During my last visit to Poland, I realized how much it has changed. Chinese restaurants are at every corner. There are more Chinese restaurants than restaurants with polish food. Pierogi is almost extinct. I think more polish people abroad eat pierogi, than polish people living in Poland. 🙂

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Chinese food in Poland is also very different from Chinese food in America. All the dishes have lots of veggies and Chinese mushrooms. They come with steamed rice, pickled cabbage on the side and chili sauce. The food is not spicy at all. Polish people don’t really like spicy food, they can’t tolerate the heat. So the people who make it already know that they have to cut back on the spices. In America, there is also much more variety of Chinese food. I really like all the Chinese dishes so I started experimenting and making them myself.   Today I want to share with you my recipe for Chinese Pepper Chicken.

Ingredients (serves 3-4 people): 

For the Marinade:

  • ¼ cup of soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp. ginger garlic paste
  • 1 tsp. of black pepper
  • 1 tsp. of salt

For cooking:

  • 3-4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breast (1 ½ pound)
  • 1 green pepper, cut into strips
  • 1 onion, cut into wedges
  • 2 tbsp. of canola oil (or any other cooking oil of choice)
  • 2 tsp. of black pepper

For sauce:

  • 1/3  cup soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. of hot sauce (or more depending how spicy you want it)
  • 1 tsp. of ginger garlic paste
  • ½ cup of water
  • 1 tbsp. of corn starch
  • 1 tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp. of brown sugar
  • 2 green chilies (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 tsp. of black pepper
  • Pinch of salt

Chopped scallions for garnish

To make it:

1.  I marinate the chicken with the soy sauce, garlic, ginger, salt and pepper. I like to use lots of pepper. The chicken should marinate for at least 1 hour, preferably overnight.

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2. I prepare the sauce for the chicken by mixing all the ingredients under the sauce section (soy sauce, hot sauce, ginger garlic paste, water, corn starch, rice vinegar, brown sugar, chilies, salt and pepper)

3. I thinly slice the chicken, cut the green peppers into strips and onions in wedges.

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3. I preheat the pan and add 2 tbsp. of oil. I stir fry the chicken for 4-5 minutes until golden brown. I sprinkle the chicken with some black pepper and fry it in batches to make sure that it browns nicely. If you add all the chicken at once, it will release a lot of moisture and it will cook without browning.

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 4. I remove the chicken on the paper towel and add the onions and peppers to the pan. I sprinkle them with 1 tsp. of black pepper and stir fry for 2-3 minutes.

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5. I return the chicken to the pan and cook it with the peppers for a minute. Then I add the sauce and cook for 2-3 minutes until the sauce starts thickening up. Once the sauce is thick you can turn off the heat and sprinkle the chicken with some chopped scallions.

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You can serve it with some cooked white rice. I like it with whole wheat angel hair spaghetti. It adds more nutritional value and it tastes great !!!

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As always, I hope you like the recipe and If you do please share it with you family and friends. Don’t forget to also leave a comment and give me your feedback.

I like to cook simple food that anyone can make at home. Please try it and let me know how it turned out. Thanks for reading!!!

ENJOY and SMACZNEGO!!!

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