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Sunday, November 11, 2007

Vietnamese Chicken... with Lemon Grass, Ginger, Chili, and Peanut Sauce

I'm entering a new culinary phase. I'm trying on Asian cooking for a size. Tonight I made a variation of something I found in the Vietnam section of the Essential Asian cookbook.

Stir-fried chicken with lemon grass, ginger, chili, and peanut sauce. Lotsa garlic, too. Great stuff, and I really totally lucked out with getting still-moist uber-fresh young ginger. Wowza. I can still taste the after-ginger in the back of my mouth. I served it on a bed of steamed brown basmati, which was nice.

So, how it shakes down:

In a medium bowl, combine:

2 (roughly chopped) medium yellow onions
4 gloves minced fresh garlic
2-inch piece of fresh ginger, grated
3 stems lemon grass, finely chopped (pale part only)
2 tablespoons jalapeno, finely chopped

And put 2 tablespoons peanut oil in a preheated wok. Add the fragrant onion mix to the medium-hot wok and stir often as you saute for 3-5 minutes.

Then, add:

1 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs, chopped into fine strips

And sprinkle chicken with 1 tablespoon palm or golden sugar.

Saute for 5 or 10 minutes, until chicken is cooked, stirring often. Add:

4-6 tablespoons peanut sauce
1/4 cup chopped peanuts or cashews

Cook for 3 minutes. Add:

1/4 cup (loosely packed) cilantro leaves
2 teaspoons fish sauce

Stir well, remove from heat, and serve on a bed of rice or noodles. If you like, a teaspoon of hot sauce ups the ante nicely.

Mm mm good.