Lemon Garlic Sticky Chicken

DSC_9180 (1600x1060)I could have easily called it lemon garlic ginger honey sticky chicken because all of those played a role in the dish.  This started with boneless thighs and a couple of lemons and evolved from there.  I started thinking sticky chicken because I have done that and had good luck.  Mix the juice from two lemons, the zest of one lemon, a couple good squeezes of honey, grated fresh ginger root, grated garlic, some brown sugar, and a slug of soy sauce and use it as a marinade for the chicken.  I chopped the chicken into one inch pieces but it would be fine to leave them whole.  Let it marinate for an hour then array the chicken on a foil lined baking tray and let it brown in a 400 degree oven, about 30 minutes.  Turn once to brown both sides.

While the chicken is cooking, add more lemon juice, honey, and soy sauce to the remaining marinade in a small sauce pan, heat to boiling, turn down to a simmer, and thicken with a cornstarch slurry.  I added a couple tablespoons of chili garlic paste to add some zing.  When the chicken is nicely browned toss with the thickened sauce and serve over rice.  I added steamed broccoli for this dish but it can be served on the side.


Ramen for breakfast

Sure, I like the quesadillas fine, for breakfast lunch or dinner.  That is no reason to forget about ramen noodles.  “Ramen Noodles”-is that phrase redundant?  I suppose it depends on where the stress is.  As far as I know all ramen are noodles.  Ramen might even translate to “noodles” but I don’t think so.  “We’re having noodles, ramen noodles.”  That seems a legit construction, eh?

Anyway, Mrs J is taking a couple of the critters to the vet for their annual rabies boosters and I’m taking her temporary absence as a good time to stink up the kitchen with hot peppers.  I set some dried mushrooms and some dried red peppers to simmering in a little water to hydrate them quickly, sliced some boneless chicken and onions.  Got out the mortar and pestle and ground a tablespoon of Szechuan peppercorns.  I marinated the chicken in rice vinegar, a teaspoon each of garlic chili paste and garlic black bean sauce, a sprinkling of the peppercorns, and a splash of hot chili oil.

Time to boil the ramen, I used the water from the mushrooms and dried chilies.  Heating a pan, I added hot chili oil and started the sliced onions, then added the chicken and the rest of the ground peppercorns, the mushrooms,sliced, and the soaked red peppers.  Drain the noodles and add them to the pan and stir to coat.  I used pre-cooked shrimp, so all I needed to do was thaw them and then add them in time enough to warm them through.  Mmm…my lips are still numb from the peppercorns.  Love that stuff.


Shrimp and Baby Bok Choy

I bought the bok choy a while ago and Mrs J alerted me to the fact that it was going to have to be used today or it would be too limp and yellow to be of much use.  She was right, and I ended up tossing nearly half of it due to condition.  Salvaged enough for a meal.

I’ve always thought that head on shrimp dishes looked just great.  I remember watching a famous TV chef eat a meal of them and remarking that “this is the only way to eat shrimp”.  Well, I bought some (frozen) at the Asian grocery last time I was there.  Tonight was the night!  I chopped the bok choy, and sliced some mushrooms to go with the shrimp, and dragged out some noodles I’ve been meaning to cook.  I made up a sauce from chicken stock and sesame oil.  I added a good tablespoon of garlic chili paste and thawed some of my minced red bell peppers.  A tablespoon or two of corn starch went in to thicken it in the pan later. Last was a couple of tablespoons of Splenda for sweetness.

I started the water boiling for the noodles, and then set about stir frying the shrimp.  They went into some hot oil in a pan where garlic and ginger were just starting to brown.  I let the shrimp cook for a minute then flipped them over, and dashed in an ounce or two of water and quickly covered the pan to let the steam help cook them.  After another minute I set the shrimp aside.

I added more oil to the pan and heated it up again, then tossed in the onions and mushrooms, then a few minutes later  the greens.  Covered those for a minute or two and let them cook.  The sauce mix went in next, and it thickened nicely as it bubbled, next the cooked shrimp were added back, and then the cooked and drained noodles.  Some stirring about with the tongs and it was ready to plate.


This slideshow requires JavaScript.