Friday, September 14, 2012

Now We're Cooking: Chicken and Green Bean Stir Fry & Leftover Rice Rice Pudding

This will be a new feature on my blog ....

Chicken and green bean stir fry

A light, simple and delicious stir fry. Not authentic, but easy, healthy and extremely versatile.

  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 1 1/4 pounds green beans
  • Cooking oil
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sherry
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (white vinegar or rice vinegar also fine)
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce (Kikkoman is best)
  • 1 tablespoon sherry
  • 1 clove garlic
  • Dash sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
  • Crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
  1. If starting with frozen chicken breasts, set in bowl of cold water to defrost.
  2. Take end off green beans and wash.
  3. Rinse rice in several changes of water until water is mostly clear. Add fresh water for cooking and set aside.
  4. Dice chicken into bite-sized pieces (approx 1/2-inch cubes). Place diced chicken in bowl.
  5. Add marinade ingredients to chicken – soy sauce, sherry, garlic (chopped or pressed through garlic press). Stir well to distribute marinade.
  6. Refrigerate chicken.
  7. Start rice to cook before starting stir fry.
  8. Prepare stir fry sauce (note: you can double the stir fry sauce if you prefer a saucier stir fry). Add brown sugar, vinegar, soy sauce, sherry and garlic (again chopped or pressed through garlic press) in small bowl. You can also add fresh ginger if you have it.
  9. Add cornstarch and stir well, pressing out any lumps until sauce has a consistent milky brown color.
  10. Heat two tablespoons of oil in an large skillet over medium-high heat.
  11. Add green beans. If green beans don’t fit in one batch, cook half at a time. Use long tongs to turn beans over while cooking so that they do not burn.
  12. If beans are particularly thick, add two tablespoons of water to pan and cover skillet for a couple of minutes to steam-cook beans to desired tenderness. Do not overcook, as beans will go back in the pan briefly later.
  13. Remove beans from pan.
  14. Add two more tablespoons of oil to pan. Add chicken and stir to separate pieces.
  15. When chicken is cooked (turns from pink to white), add prepared stir fry sauce and stir. Sauce will quickly turn from milky light brown to glossy dark brown as it cooks.
  16. Add string beans and stir to combine. Add dash of sesame oil if desired.
  17. Remove chicken and string beans to serving dish.
  18. Serve over rice.
Serves 6.
  • If you are making ahead, cook green beans and chicken separately. Just before you are ready to eat, add chicken back to skillet with sauce, then vegetables last. This will keep everything looking pretty.
  • If sauce is too runny for your liking, mix 2 teaspoons of cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of water and add. Cook until sauce thickens.
  • If sauce is too thick, add 2 tablespoons of water and stir well.
  • If sauce is too tart for your liking, add 1 tablespoon soy sauce.
Here’s the link back to Easy chicken and green bean stir fry.

Leftover Rice Rice Pudding
2 cups leftover cooked white rice
3 cups milk (any kind)*
1/2 cup sugar
small pinch salt
1/2 cup raisins
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, optional
pinch nutmeg, optional

Combine cooked rice, milk, sugar and salt in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to a simmer and stir in the vanilla and raisins. Cook until just about all of the milk is absorbed (30-45 minutes, depending on how absorbent your rice is). Stir in cinnamon and/or nutmeg, if using.

Divide rice pudding into individual serving dishes serve warm or chilled.
Makes 4-6 servings.

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