Thursday, June 26, 2014

Easy Asian Spicy Shrimp And (Or) Chicken

Do you have any picky eaters in your house? I do. Yep, it's my husband, Mark. While I adore fish and seafood, Mark's word would be abhor not adore when it comes to things that swim. Not a deal breaking difference for sure, but one that can make meal planning a little difficult sometimes.

A few weeks ago, I came up with a very simple glaze for shrimp on the grill I thought it would be amazing...'thought' being the operative word here. Turned out that the glaze burned off and didn't leave much of the sweetness and tartness of the lovely orange, hot pepper, rice vinegar, garlic and ginger flavors behind. As we used to say in the old days of the sixties, "bummer." 

The glaze/sauce was spot on, but I'd used the wrong cooking method. Fail. Except...what if instead of using it as a glaze, I used it as a sauce? What if I dredged great big beautiful shrimp in cornstarch and egg white and made an Asian Spicy Orange Shrimp dish? I'd love it! Mark wouldn't. 

But. Since the sauce was going on after frying, it could be poured over both shrimp AND crisp chunks of chicken for Asian Spicy Chicken to keep Mark a happy hubby. sauce, TWO satisfied diners, one happy couple! That might just make it a win win WIN, happily ever after situation. And it was.

Easy Asian Spicy Shrimp And (Or) Chicken

  • 1 t fresh orange zest - save the juice to thin your sauce if needed
  • 1/4 C orange marmalade
  • 1/4 C Frank's Red Hot Sweet Chile Sauce - LOVE this stuff!
  • 1 t granulated garlic
  • 1/4 t ginger
  • 3 T rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 t red pepper flakes

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1" chunks
  • 12 extra large shrimp - peeled, deveined, tails removed if you wish 
  • 2 egg whites - feel free to use egg whites in a carton to make things even easier
  • 1/3 C cornstarch
  • 1/2 t Kosher salt
  • canola oil - enough to come 1 1/2" up the side of a cast iron skillet (or other skillet if you don't own a cast iron one)

First, in a small saucepan, whisk the sauce ingredients together over low heat - orange zest through red pepper flakes - just until the mixture is smooth. Set aside.

In a deep bowl, make the batter by beating the egg whites until frothy, then beating in the cornstarch and salt until you have a smooth, lump free batter. Set aside

Start heating the oil in the skillet to about 350 degrees. When the oil is hot, start battering the chicken first.

Working quickly, add the chicken chunks to the batter. Give them a good stir and one by one take them from the batter, letting excess batter drop back into the batter bowl; carefully add each piece to the hot oil. Be sure allow enough room so each piece of chicken fries evenly. Turn over the pieces as they turn golden and cook on the other side. Remove with a slotted spoon or a spider to a paper towel lined platter.

Now do the same thing with the shrimp. Why do the chicken first? So the picky eater's chicken doesn't taste like shrimp! Not quite enough batter to do the shrimp, too? Make another batch of batter!

Once both proteins are fried to perfection, make a bed of cooked rice (brown in this case) and spoon the sauce over the shrimp and the chicken. 

NOTE: I served steamed red peppers and broccolini with the meal for lots of color and healthy vitamins!

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