Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Cashew Chicken

Chinese food is one of those great American comfort foods. Did I say American? Yes I did. Chinese food here in the United States is not real Chinese food at all. It is battered and deep-fried and delicious. Whereas real Chinese food is varied and includes braising, stewing, baking, and wrapping seafood, fowl, and duck. Do I like authentic Chinese food? Not necessarily. Do I like American Chinese food. Yes, I love it. Specifically Sesame Chicken, General Tsao's Chicken, Sweet and Sour Chicken, Lemon Chicken, and Cashew Chicken. (Dang, that's a lot of chicken...) So here it is: Cashew Chicken.

Ginger, oh so magical.
Green onions and my mom's hands. She said that she was self-conscious of her "arthritis fingers." Oh silly mother, you have beautiful hands...
My little brother and moi. I adore him.

Cashew Chicken
Prep Time: 45 minutes | Cook Time: 15 minutes
1½ pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 tablespoons dry sherry (or cooking wine, or omit)
2 teaspoons minced, peeled fresh ginger
3½ teaspoons cornstarch, divided
Coarse salt½ cup chicken broth
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
2/3 cup unsalted cashews
2 green onions, white and green parts divided and thinly sliced
(If you like more sauce, feel free to double the sauce ingredients.)
1. In a medium bowl, toss the chicken with the sherry, ginger, and 1½ teaspoons cornstarch; season with coarse salt. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl whisk together the chicken broth, soy sauce, rice vinegar, sugar and 2 teaspoons cornstarch. Set aside.
3. In a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil. Add half of the chicken and cook until golden brown and cooked through, about 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate and cover with foil. Add 1 teaspoon of oil to the skillet and cook the remaining chicken (reduce the heat if the chicken is over-browning). Transfer to the covered plate.
4. In the same skillet, add the remaining teaspoon of vegetable oil. Add the cashews, garlic, and green onion whites. Cook, stirring constantly, until the garlic begins to soften, about 30 seconds. Whisk the sauce again to combine and add to the skillet along with the chicken. Cook until the sauce thickens, about 30 seconds. Serve over rice or noodles and top with the green onion greens.


  1. Mmm...cashew chicken is my FAVORITE of american chinese chickens! It's so yummy! I think you should make this again sometime..for me ;)

    1. I would love to make it for you! Do I hear dinner party?! :)


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