Chicken and Broccoli Stir Fry
1 1/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 bunch scallions, chopped, separated into whites and greens
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2-inch piece peeled fresh ginger, minced
2 tablespoons turbinado sugar (or granulated sugar)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons xiaoxing wine (Chinese rice wine, can substitute dry sherry)
1/2 tablespoon + 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 tablespoon + 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon grapeseed or other neutral oil
1-1/2 lb broccoli crowns, florets and stems, chopped
1 teaspoon crushed chile flakes (optional*)
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
*By crushed chile flakes, I mean something more along the lines of what you’d buy in a bag at the Asian market (if you can find ’em!), not the ones you use for Italian dishes, etc.
In a medium bowl, mix the scallion whites, garlic, ginger, sugar, soy sauce, xiaoxing wine, 1/2 tablespoon cornstarch, 1/2 tablespoon Kosher salt, and sesame oil. Add chicken and marinate at room temperature for 15 minutes.
In a small bowl, mix the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch with 1/2 cup water and set aside.
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet or wok over high heat. Add the broccoli, 1/4 cup water, 1/2 teaspoon salt and chili flakes, if using. Stir-fry until the broccoli is bright green and tender-crisp, about 5 minutes, adding a tablespoon or two of water, if needed, to prevent sticking. Transfer to a plate.
Add the chicken mixture to the hot pan or wok. Stir continuously until the chicken is brown and cooked through, 5-6 minutes. Add the oyster sauce, stir, then return the broccoli to the pan and toss to heat through. Stir in the reserved cornstarch mixture (you may have to stir it up again before adding to the pan) and bring to a boil to thicken (add a couple more tablespoons of water to make a bit more sauce, if desired.) Remove from heat and toss in the chopped scallion greens.
Serve over jasmine rice.
I’ve remarked before that stir fries, as much as I love them, don’t make it into my repertoire that often. This one firmly planted itself there tonight because ohhhhh myyyyy. I suppose I expected this to be a nice weeknight dish and all, but it just wowed me so far beyond that. Gingery, garlicky and spicy, with just a bit of tangy sweetness to cut through all the savory. It was perfect.
I must say, too, that this is fantastic with chile garlic sauce on top, if that’s your thing, and you can also use it to cook into the dish in place of the chile flakes if it’s what you have on hand. It works just as nicely.