What A Wonderful Meal!
Tender stir-fried chicken, delicious crisp vegetables in a traditional Gluten-Free white sauce. So delicious, just like the classic dish served in Chinese restaurants but you can make this restaurant-style recipe anytime at HOME!
I’ll be upfront with you, there’s plenty of slicing and mincing in this recipe. I recommend you have a sous-chef, a partner (in crime) to help you with the prep work. It doesn’t even need to be human. How about a mandoline slicer or my favorite food processor comes to mind.
If you don’t have those, but you’re great with a knife, then go for it! You won’t be disappointed.
Start prepping earlier in the day, that way, you can have everything chilled and ready to go ahead of time. Then before dinner time, start your rice, heat up your wok and proceed to stir-fry.
Switch-It Up and Have FUN!
There are plenty of wonderful vegetables listed in the recipe ingredients below. Say, you grow zucchini in your garden or just have some on hand? I think that would taste great. Haha! How about some canned baby corn? I laugh because I can’t help but think of a very young Tom Hanks, as the character Josh munching on the teensy-weensy baby corn ~ like corn on the cob ~ in “BIG!”
Now, this is a Chinese WHITE Sauce recipe. So, trust me, and try the recipe as written first. However, if you are still just a die-hard Chinese BROWN Sauce fan, here’s what you can do. Stir in La Choy soy sauce (gluten-free), by adding 1-Tbsp at a time, but I add by taste. Tinker with the sugar, salt & pepper by taste too. To brighten the flavor up a bit, I also add in until I satisfied, 1/2 tsp at a time, of rice vinegar. Finally, to pump up the heat, add some more red pepper flakes. Share in the comments if you have a brown sauce recipe you like!
Come Time To Stir-Fry
Careful not to over-cook the meat or the vegetables. In fact, we like our veggies al dente, slightly crisp, still with some fresh bite to them. The electric wok I own is decades old, and I use it for most my deep-frying too. Mine is non-stick, so the little bit of oil I add is just used as a flavor-enhancer.
Even though we’re empty nesters at our house, I still make the full recipe. I make the stir-fry, then the sauce, but don’t combine them, except for what we will eat fresh. I refrigerate both separately. Later for 1 or 2 servings, I use a MED-SIZED, flat-bottom, stove-top wok to refreshen up the Almond Chicken Stir Fry on HIGH (no sauce, no scorching). Once the chicken and veggies are hot, just spoon in some sauce to heat through.
Almond Chicken Stir Fry
Chicken & Veggies:
- 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 2 carrots sliced (bias cut, if desired)
- 2 celery ribs sliced (bias cut, if desired)
- 4- oz snow peas strings removed
- 4- oz fresh mushrooms sliced
- 1 8-oz can water chestnuts sliced, drained
- 1/2 8-oz can bamboo shoots drained
- 1 lb Napa cabbage sliced
- 2 Tbsp oil divided (more, if needed)
- 2 tsp fresh ginger minced
- 2 tsp fresh garlic minced
- 3/4 tsp red pepper flakes more or less
- 1/2 cup onion minced
- 3 cups chicken broth preferably homemade*
- 3 Tbsp cornstarch
- Granulated sugar add to taste
- Salt and pepper add to taste
- 6 cups cooked rice white or brown
- 1 cup blanched almonds whole
*Substitute: 3 cups water + 1 Tbsp chicken base. Tones, McCormick and Better than Boullion all work great; better than canned and infinitely better than the cubes!
Prep & Chill:
Bias-slice the chicken and prep the vegetables. Refrigerate the chicken separately from the veggies. Mince the fresh ginger, fresh garlic, and onion; chill now, to stir-fry for the White Sauce later. Lastly, combine a small amount of chicken broth with cornstarch for a slurry, stir in the remaining broth. Chill.
Before dinner, start the rice cooking according to the package directions, or as your manual directs (i.e.: rice cooker or Instant Pot).
In a non-stick electric wok, over HIGH heat (375°F) a drop of water should sizzle into a puff of steam. Heat 1-tsp oil, and stir-fry the almonds for about 2 min, or until lightly golden. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add 1-Tbsp oil to stir-fry the chicken. Transfer the cooked chicken to a large, 2-qt covered container. Set aside. Heat 1-tsp oil to stir-fry the veggies. Add the carrots first, stir-frying 1-2 minutes. Add the celery, cook 1 minute just before adding the snow peas. Don't over-cook, stir-fry until just barely tender, but still crisp. Add to the chicken. Stir-fry the mushrooms for 30 seconds, add water chestnuts, and then bamboo shoots; briefly stir-fry, before transferring to the chicken. Finally, quickly stir-fry the sliced cabbage until only wilted; toss in with veggies, almonds, and chicken.
In the empty wok, over HIGH heat, add 1-tsp oil and minced ginger; stir-fry briefly for 15 seconds. Add the minced garlic and red pepper flakes, quickly stir-fry 15-30 more seconds, lower heat, as necessary. Add minced onion, stir-fry until translucent. Re-stir chicken broth, cornstarch mixture and pour into the wok, heat through to thicken. Add sugar, 1 tsp at a time, going by taste. Season with salt and pepper.
Add golden almonds, cooked and veggies back into the wok, with the white sauce, and heat through. Serve over hot cooked rice. Sprinkle with reserved almonds over top.
Besides prepping the ingredients earlier, at this point, scrape part of the white sauce out into a container, besides the servings you want now. Cover and store the remaining Almond Chicken & Stir-Fried Vegetables separately from the sauce. Later, refresh (stir-fry) just the amount Almond Chicken & Vegetables you want and spoon some sauce in at the end, heat through.
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