Orange chicken is not one of the most famous recipes out there, that I’m aware of. It’s no secret that I love Asian cuisine. To avoid making an ignorant generalization, this includes Japanese, Vietnamese, Chinese, among other cuisines from other countries in the region… I always try to make sure my pantry is always stocked with ingredients that highlight these cultures, such as miso paste, soy sauce, fish sauce, bonito flakes. Also fresh produce like bok choy, cilantro, bean sprouts, lemongrass… For me, it’s like taking a little trip every time I take the time to prepare myself a delicious plate of food. Or when I’m cooking for my friends or my partner. It’s something that I really love and enjoy. Perhaps one day I can go through my pantry and show you guys my favorite ingredients, would you be into that? Let me know in the comments or tweet me at @possiblyjoanne!
One of my favorite things of this type of cuisine is the predominant use of fresh produce it conveys. It can be so inspiring! That’s why this dish that I’m sharing today was a bit uninspiring to make. I’ll elaborate a bit more: I’ve just come back home from a trip to Paris with my partner and we came home to an empty fridge. The only things I had that would make good use for a hearty lunch was: frozen chicken, oranges, and ginger. My pantry was stocked, of course. No hassle there. So I thought “Hell! Why not reinvent a french dish I enjoyed in Paris, duck l’orange and just make… Japanese orange chicken?” I don’t know. Somehow it made sense in my mind and I went with it. But I needed something that would make everything a bit tastier. Some sticky brown rice is always perfect for this kind of dish. And I will say, the outcome sure was delicious. And here it is, Orange chicken and sticky rice.
First, I’ll explain to you guys how I made this sticky rice.
What I did first was, I rinsed the rice and drained it several times. Then I left it to soak in water for about two hours. You’ll need brown rice, water, and a medium-large sized pot. Salt if you like, not mandatory. I used to following method:
- 2 cups (450 grams) of water for 1 cup of rice.
- Use hot water, put it to a boil, when it’s boiling add the rice
- Cover it with a tight lid and do not uncover the rice, turn down the heat to low and cook for about 30 minutes.
- After the 30 minutes, remove from the heat and let it rest for an extra 15 minutes. Do not uncover the rice. Please trust the process and have patience.
- After the cooking and resting time is done. Uncover the rice and fluff with a fork (or chopsticks)
The consistency has to be somewhat like this, firm yet a bit sticky:
Now for the chicken marinade:
- 1 large orange, grated
- the juice of that orange
- 1 teaspoon of grated fresh ginger
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons of rice vinegar
- a dash of fish sauce
- 3 tablespoons of soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon of sriracha (optional)
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 chicken breast, cubed
To cook the chicken:
- 2 teaspoons of all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons of sesame oil
Mix together all the ingredients in a bowl (except the flour) and let the chicken marinade for an hour or so. Pretty straight forward, right?!
In a medium saucepan, start heating a tablespoon of sesame oil. Once hot, add all the solid components of the marinade, except the marinade itself. Cook for 10 minutes. once the chicken is fully cooked add the rest of the marinade and the flour. Mix well, when the sauce begins to form from the marinade and the flour, remove it from the heat.
In a bowl, add the sticky rice and top it with the chicken and some green onions.
And after this, just enjoy! I see this bowl of happy as something you can curl up on the couch with. What do you guys think? Is this a type of recipe you’d be interested in seeing more often? Let me know!