Recipe: Indian Chili Chicken

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs (6 to 8 smallish ones)
2 tablespoons dark soy sauce, plus extra if required
Ground black pepper, to taste
1/2 teaspoon bouillon powder (or 1/2 a stock cube)
1 to 2 tablespoons neutral cooking oil
1-inch piece ginger, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 to 2 green bird’s eye chili(s), sliced (add more if you like your sauce spicy)
1 medium green bell pepper, sliced
1/2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/2 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon sugar
Salt to taste
Fresh, chopped cilantro, to garnish
Sliced green onions, to garnish
Cooked rice or noodles, to serve

Cut each chicken thighs into 2 to 3 smaller pieces. Place them in a large bowl, and stir in the soy sauce, black pepper and bouillon powder. Cover and refrigerate for a couple of hours, or even overnight.

When ready to cook, let the chicken come to room temperature on the counter for 20 minutes. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat, and add the ginger, garlic and bird’s eye chili. Sauté for a minute, until fragrant, then add the green pepper and chicken. Fry for 2 to 3 minutes, coating the chicken in the ginger, garlic and chili mixture.

Turn down the heat, and simmer gently for 10 to 15 minutes, covered, until the chicken is cooked. If the pan looks like it’s drying out, add 1/4 cup of water.

Whisk the vinegar, cornstarch and sugar in a small bowl. Once the chicken is almost cooked, uncover the pan, and add the vinegar-cornstarch mixture. Continue to cook for a few more minutes, until the sauce thickens slightly. Taste and add salt to taste.

Serve, garnished with green onions and cilantro, over rice or noodles. This dish re-heats and freezes very well; the dish is even better on the second day. Leftovers will keep refrigerated for 1 week or frozen for up to 3 months.


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