Monday, March 12, 2012

Chicken, Red Pepper, and Cashew Stir-Fry

Good afternoon bloggers! Welcome to a brand new edition of Everyday Meals. Today, we are taking on a delicious, simple version of an Asian classic. This dish will be spicy, sweet, salty, and tangy. It will be paired with a very simple rice pilaf. For those of you who are not aware of what pilaf is, you are about to be schooled. Pilaf is when rice is cooked in a seasoned broth. The English term, pilaf, is borrowed from the Turkish and/or Uzbek word: pilav. The word pilav means "shrivelled or bad grain". Depending on where this dish is being served, it may be served with meat and vegetables. Pilaf and it's close relative dishes are common in Caribbean, Middle Eastern, South Asian, Central, East African, and Latin American cuisine. Okay, so now that we have a bit of background on what we will be working with, why don't we get in the kitchen so we can begin making this extremely delicious meal? I'll meet you there!

    Chicken, Red Pepper, and Cashew Stir-Fry

    You will need:

    • 3.75 teaspoons cornstarch, divided
    • 2 tablespoons soy sauce, divided
    • 2 teaspoons dry sherry
    • 1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
    • 3/4 teaspoon sugar
    • 1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
    • 1 pound chicken breast tenders, cut lengthwise into thin strips
    • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped unsalted cashews
    • 2 tablespoons canola oil
    • 2 cups julienne-cut red bell peppers
    • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
    • 1/2 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger
    • 3 tablespoons thinly sliced green onions

    • For the Rice Pilaf:

    • 2 tablespoons water chestnuts, dried and chopped
    • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon crushed black pepper
    • 1 package frozen white rice


    1. Combine 1 teaspoon cornstarch, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, and the next 4 ingredients (through hot pepper sauce) in a small bowl, then stir with a whisk.
    2. Combine the remaining 2.75 teaspoons cornstarch, remaining 1 tablespoon soy sauce, and chicken in a medium bowl.
    3. Toss well to coat.
    4. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. 
    5. Add the cashews to the pan. 
    6. Cook for 3 minutes or until lightly toasted, stirring frequently, then remove from the pan.
    7. Add oil to a pan, and swirl to coat. 
    8. Add the chicken mixture to the pan, then sauté for 2 minutes or until lightly browned.
    9. Remove the chicken from the pan and place in a bowl. 
    10. Add the bell pepper to the pan and sauté for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
    11. Add the garlic and ginger, and cook for 30 seconds. 
    12. Place the chicken and cornstarch mixture in the pan. 
    13. Cook for 1 minute or until the sauce is slightly thick. 
    14. Sprinkle with cashews and green onions.
    15. To Cook The Rice Pilaf: Cook 1 package of frozen white rice according to package directions. 
    16. Combine the cooked rice, 2 tablespoons drained chopped water chestnuts, 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper.
    17. Serve along with the main dish and enjoy!

    I thank you for taking a little bit of your time to come out and learn a new recipe with me. I can't wait to come back and share another amazing recipe with the lot of you. Stay tuned! Have a great day and happy blogging to all! <3