Sunday, August 3, 2008

Magnetic post - Orange Chicken and a award

This year has been quite eventful so far. Apart from the various trips R and I have taken, we have had a few gatherings at our place to catch up with friends and family. Looking forward to a few more over the course of the coming months. Need to start learning lot more new recipes. I always like to have a few new items when I have anyone visiting us. Or even for potlucks, for that matter. This post has one such recipe that I have tried recently - Orange Chicken.

I first tried Orange Shrimp at P.F.Chang's - tangy and hot invoking all the taste buds! It was four years back and till date, whenever we go to P.F.Chang's I will browse through the menu from the start to finish and end up ordering this each and every time. I am the more experimental one between R and me when eating out..but Orange Shrimp and Pad Thai of most Thai restaurants (not all restaurants make it that good..will not name any here but I know!) are never a matter of compromise :) Tweaked the recipe here based on the comments in there and as per our taste. Disclaimer - It does not taste exactly like the P.F.Chang's Orange chicken, but it was pretty good for home-made. The flavors were there.

Makes 4 to 5 servings

Step 1

Chicken - 1 lb, about 25-30 pieces
Eggs - 2
Paprika Powder - 1/4 tsp
Corn flour - 1/2 cup
Flour - 1/4 cup
Salt - 1.5 tsp
White pepper - 1 tsp
Canola oil - 1 tbsp

Marinade chicken with beaten eggs, paprika powder, corn flour, flour, salt, white pepper and canola oil. Keep aside for about 15 minutes. Tip - During these 15 minutes, prepare the sauce and solution from Step 2 and Step 3 respectively. Deep fry the chicken pieces on High to Medium-High heat. Don't over fry it else the chicken turns fiber-ish. Keep the chicken soft.

Step 2

Soy sauce - 2 tbsp
Orange juice - 3 tbsp
Brown sugar - 4 tbsp
Vinegar - 5 tbsp
Orange zest of 2 oranges

Make a solution of soy sauce, orange juice, brown sugar, vinegar and orange zest. Keep it aside for use in Step 4.

Tip -
  • I used dark soy sauce and thus, the dark color. Light soy sauce can be used instead for a lighter color.
  • Be careful while getting the orange zest. If you scrap too deep on the orange skin, the zest will become bitter.

Step 3

Corn-flour - 1 tbsp
Water - 1/2 cup

Make a solution of corn-flour and water. Keep it aside for use in Step 4.

Step 4

Canola oil - 1 tbsp
Ginger paste - 1/2 tsp
Crushed Garlic - 1 tsp

Crushed red chilli - 1/4 tsp
Green onion - 1/4 cup (or, Red onion - 1/2 chopped)

Rice wine - 1 tbsp

Sesame oil - 1 tsp
Canola oil - 1 tbsp

Peanuts - as per taste.

Heat a wok on High heat. Once the wok is hot, add canola oil. When oil is heated up (don't let it smoke), add the ginger paste and crushed garlic and stir. Once browned, add crushed red chilli and and green onion (or red onion). Let the onion caramelize. Leave the onion slightly crunchy.

Add rice wine. Add the solution from Step 2 and bring it to a boil. Add the solution from Step 3 and let it thicken for between 5 to 10 minutes. Once thickened, add sesame oil and canola oil (1 tbsp). If you like green pepper, chop them into small cubes and add them as well.

Once the liquid is fully prepared, add the chicken from Step 1 and stir slowly. Leave it on heat for between 2 to 5 minutes.

Roast some peanuts and garnish before serving. Enjoy it with warm rice!

Just the way I have a magnetic-akin attraction to Orange Chicken and Pad Thai, I love collecting magnets from every place that I or R visit. I took this up after R and I got married. They are my treasure - each and every magnet evokes memories of the relaxed days of joy when visiting a certain place! Like Raymond says in "Everybody Loves Raymond" when talking about the demented family memories at his brother's wedding "Only keep the good ones". Isn't that sweet and very practical? :) Try practising it and it will zero out a number of unpleasant events from your life...some unpleasant events are just not worth holding onto. OK, enough of philosopher Pragyan talk! Coming back to the magnets, here is my entire collection.

Sending this for the "Fridge Magnet" event being hosted by Veda here. The due date for this event is August 11th, 2008. I always regret that I did not get one when visiting SFO :(

Note that some of the magnets are not place-specific. A few have a certain witty tongue-in-cheek comment and I just could not resist adding them to my collection. They bring a smile to my face any day as I glance them. Highlighting them below.

I am including a pic of one of my favourite accessories of my kitchen playground. This one has always evoked a comment from even the most silent of visitors to my house. Some friends and relatives who don't think too highly of my cooking skills even nod in agreement..."only keep the good ones", so you know how often such acquaintances cross my mind ;)

Lastly, I would like to thank Simran of Bombay Foodie for thinking of me while passing on the "Blogging Friend Forver" award. (Link) Appreciate it, dear!

The following rules apply to this award:
  1. Only five people are allowed to receive this award
  2. Four of them are followers of your blog.
  3. One has to be new to your blog and live in another part of the world.
  4. You must link back to who ever gave you the award.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the following readers of my blog. Day to day interaction with each of you adds a special charm to the whole blogging experience. Keep it going, fellas! :)

  1. Shibani of Pearls of East
  2. Sagari of Indian Cooking
  3. Sra of When my soup came alive
  4. Sia of Monsoon Spice
  5. Sharmila is someone new on my blog and lives in India. She has an extensive collection of recipes and crafts. Check her out at Kichu Khon.


sra said...

Loved the magnets, esp the wine one, and the Mom's kitchen one. The pasta plate is nice too! And thank you for the award, Pragyan, nice of you.

veda murthy said...

hi pragyan!!!!!

Thanks for the entry!!!and I just think your collection is supercool!!!!superb...specially love the 'I m in charge here', 'Dinner is ready when the smoke alarm goes off' and 'Mom's Kitchen'


Sia said...

those magnets are very cute but the one 'mom's kitchen' is my fav one :)
before i forget, congrats and thanks for passing me the award :)
have a nice day

Sharmila said...

Thank you so much Pragyan!!Am honoured. And congrats on your award too. Love your Orange chicken. :-)

Shreya said...

Hi, Great post! Love the orange chicken, and what a lovely collection of magnets you have:-) Congratulations on the award...

Pearlsofeast said...

Dear Pragyan,what a magnetic chicken dish.I love the orangish flavour in it.Pragyan I always love to read ur articles,they are so thoughtful.

Thank you dear for extending the friendship.

Suma Rajesh said...

u have beautiful collection of chicken is inviting....just had in hotels but nevr tryed at home...

Priti said...

Lovly collection of magnets you got there..Love the Mom's Kitchen the best :)

Purva Desai said...

Hey Pragnya!!!

Thanks for dropping by...
dont 4get to send in your entries...

besides congrats for the award and you ve really beautiful collection of magnets

Pragyan said...

Hi Sra: Thanks for the compliment. :) Hope to see your post on the award sometime soon!

Hi Veda: Thank you, dear! Thanks for organizing the wonderful magnet event :) Looking forward to the round-up.

Hi Sia: Thank you, Ma'am! :)

Hi Sharmila: Glad you enjoyed!

Hi Shreya: Thanks, dear!

Hi Shibani: You just made my day with your comment! Looking forward to your posts..

Hi Suma: Hope you get to try this at home! Not that difficult..a little time-consuming, but ok!

Hi Priti: Thank you for the sweet little comment. Look forward to hear more from you..

Hi Purva: Nice to hear from you..Will try to send something, though I just can't remember of one special thing that we had for Rakhi..thanks for the sweet compliment!