Easy GF Eating: Stir-Fried Ginger Chicken

I chose to live in on-campus apartment housing during my junior and senior years of college. Having access to a full kitchen felt, in a strange way, like being given another small piece of adult freedom. I didn’t always have a lot of time to cook for myself (are there any other double majors in the house?) so instead I had a few easy recipes which I made often. I learned how to make this dish, Stir-Fried Ginger Chicken, in a cooking class several years ago, and it has always been one of my favorite comfort foods.

Stir-Fried Ginger Chicken with Rice and Veggies (Serves 4)
(Adapted from a recipe by Gerri Sarnataro)

Vegetable oil
1 ½- 2 lbs boneless chicken breast, cleaned and cut into cubes

¼ tsp garlic powder
2 tbsp Kame Hoisin Sauce*
4 tbsp San-J Tamari Organic Soy Sauce*
2 tbsp cooking sherry
1 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp freshly cut ginger

2 tbsp Kame Hoisin Sauce*
4 tbsp San-J Tamari Organic Soy Sauce*
1 tsp freshly cut ginger
1 tbsp cooking sherry
1 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp freshly diced scallions
2 medium carrots, cut into ½ inch matchsticks
5 large mushrooms, diced
1 zucchini, cut into ½ inch matchsticks
1 ½  cups Jasmine rice

3 cups water

1. Combine the marinade ingredients and add the cubed chicken pieces. Stir to coat and set aside in the fridge, covered in plastic, for thirty minutes. In a small bowl, prepare the sauce and set aside.

2. Prepare the vegetables, each in separate bowls. Cover the carrot and zucchini bowls with plastic, add about a tablespoon of water, and soften in the microwave in thirty-second installments.

3. Prepare rice to cook at the same time as vegetables. Place over a low heat and monitor so that it does not burn. (Instructions vary based on the brand of rice you use; follow directions on package carefully.)

4. Place a wok or wide frying pan over medium heat and coat the bottom and all sides of the pan with vegetable oil. First, cook mushrooms until soft. Remove from pan and add to a large serving bowl. Cook carrots until brown. Remove when finished and add to large serving bowl. Lastly, cook zucchini until soft and beginning to brown. Return carrots and mushrooms to the pan with a small amount of oil and mix together. Remove vegetables from pan and return to serving bowl.

5. Coat the pan with oil and add the marinated chicken, stirring until almost cooked through. The marinade coating on the chicken should start to caramelize. Add the prepared sauce and stir, letting the chicken cook evenly. The sauce should start to thicken. Add additional scallions and ginger if you prefer. When the chicken is done, remove from the heat and place in another large serving bowl.

*NOTE: The brands of soy/hoisin sauce used in this recipe are gluten-free. It can be really hard to find wheat-free, gluten-free soy sauce products, but I like these both. I use a particularly delicious brand of hoisin sauce that I buy in Chinatown, but it isn’t clear whether it is gluten free. My allergy to gluten is slightly milder than most, so this sauce doesn’t affect me as much. If you are more severely allergic, please make sure you find a brand that it specifically labeled “gluten-free”.
Feel free to use different vegetables in this recipe, or try it with other kinds of protein (beef, pork, tofu, etc.) Enjoy!

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