Souped Up Recipes gives us another great home cooking demonstration, this time with orange chicken. Make sure to use fresh-squeezed orange juice, as the store-bought kind won’t have the right level of tropical flavor.
Homemade Orange Chicken
Time Required: 1 hour
For The Chicken
One chicken breast, slice it into 1/4 of an inch pieces
½ tsp salt
Black pepper to taste
2 tbsp fresh-squeezed orange juice
100 grams cornstarch
2 medium eggs, beaten well
Enough frying oil to fill your cast iron skillet (recommend soybean oil)
For The Sauce
2 tsp cooking oil
1 tsp minced ginger
1 tbsp minced garlic
Crushed red pepper flakes to taste (optional)
¼ cup fresh-squeezed orange juice
3 ½ tbsp of light soy sauce
¼ cup of brown sugar
1 tbsp honey
1.5 tsp orange zest
3 tbsp of white vinegar
Cornstarch slurry (1.5 tbsp of water + 1 tbsp and 1 tsp of cornstarch)
Diced scallions and crushed red pepper flakes for garnish
Medium Mixing bowl
2 Small Bowls
Cast Iron Pan or other Thick Bottom Vessel Heavy Enough For Frying
For the marinade:
Cut your chicken breast in half length-wise. Bias cut each half, producing think ¼ inch thick slices.
Place chicken pieces in a medium bowl and season with salt and black pepper. Toss with 2 tbsp orange juice.
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Note: Marinade steps can be done ahead of time.
For the chicken:
In a small bowl combine cornstarch with eggs and mix until smooth and shiny.
Remove chicken from the refrigerator and coat with batter.
Heat frying oil in your cast iron skillet to 360 degrees. If you don’t have a thermometer, test that the oil is ready for frying by dropping a small amount of batter into the oil. If it bubbles and floats to the top, the oil is hot enough.
In two batches, drop coated chicken pieces gently into the hot oil. Fry for 3-5 minutes, making sure to separate any pieces that stick together.
Remove the chicken from oil and let rest for 10 minutes on the counter.
Increase the temperature of your oil to 390 degrees. Add all the chicken in at once and toss until all pieces are golden in color. Remove from oil and set aside.
For the sauce:
Heat your wok to high, then add 2 tbsp cooking oil. Add ginger and garlic and crushed red pepper flakes if using. Stir until fragrant.
Add remaining orange juice, soy sauce, brown sugar, and orange zest. Stir to combine until sugar is melted. Add honey, then add vinegar.
Add cornstarch slurry and cook until the sauce has thickened to a syrupy texture, about 2 minutes.
Turn off the heat and add in cooked chicken. Toss to coat.
Serve garnished with scallions and more crushed red pepper flakes.