Thursday, May 26, 2011

Cheaters Orange Chicken

 Farmers Wife Original Recipe.

Hey ya'll!! I am so excited to share this recipe with you, because well it was possibly my favorite meal to ever come out of my kitchen. Let me explain. When I was a teenager my best friend and I were somewhat obsessed with Panda Express. I remember we'd go to the mall and without fail we would ALWAYS get Panda Express even if we'd just eaten lunch. And there was never a time that we went, that we didn't get a HUGE helping of their fabulous Orange Chicken. Even now as adults, we don't see each other very often living across the country from each other, but the last time she came down for a visit we made my Hubby take us to Panda for dinner one night... And we ordered the exact same thing! haha!

My love for Orange chicken has continued on into Adulthood, with the exception that now I wonder just what exactly I'm eating. I mean we all know that take out is never as good for you as homemade, and honestly my concern is always more with the chicken itself than the sauce. So awhile back I went on a hunt to find out more about my favorite chicken dish. And while I will still eat Panda's from time to time, I think making it at home was SO much better! Calorie wise it was much healthier, and the taste was almost spot on! Though I had a little help... hehe! Did ya'll know they bottle and sell the Orange Sauce now? YUP! I was so excited, I think I did a little happy dance in Wally World... teehee! I will say that you probably don't want to use just the straight sauce... My word was it strong! I added a few ingredients to it and we just LOVED this meal! So next time you're craving Chinese give this a try, I can almost guarantee it will satisfy your craving. ;-)

3-4 large chicken breasts, cubed
2 large egg whites
3/4 cup cornstarch
½ tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
2 1/2 cups canola or vegetable oil

1/2 Bottle of Orange Sauce
2 Tablespoon Rice Wine Vinegar
1/3 Cup Soy Sauce
1/4 Cup Orange Marmalade
Dash of Ground Ginger

To make the sauce; in a Medium bowl mix all sauce ingredients until combined. You can then throw it into a 2-4 quart crock pot and keep it warm. Then once the chicken is done, throw it all together in the crock pot and it will stay warm til served, plus the chicken will absorb more of the sauce's flavor. 

To make the chicken
coating, place the egg whites in a pie plate and whisk until frothy.  In a second pie plate combine the cornstarch, baking soda and cayenne pepper; whisk to blend. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Place half of the chicken pieces in the egg whites and turn to coat.  Transfer the pieces to the cornstarch mixture and coat thoroughly, shaking off the excess.  Transfer to a plate and repeat with the remaining chicken pieces.
To fry the chicken, heat the oil in a 11- or 12-inch round Dutch oven or straight-sided sauté pan until the oil reaches 350˚ F.  Carefully place half of the chicken pieces in the oil and fry until golden brown, about 5-7 minutes, turning the pieces halfway through cooking.  Remove from the oil with a skimmer or slotted spoon and transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.  Return the oil to 350˚ F and repeat with the remaining chicken pieces. Once done add to the sauce and mix well, I like to put mine in my small 2 quart crock pot and let it stay warm, then serve on rice.

This was simply delicious, it had the same kick that the original does, but I think overall had more flavor. My hubby and I just LOVED this and fought over the leftovers. So I would give this one 5 stars!

Don't forget to tune in TOMORROW for another Friday Featured Guest Post, this week with Lauren from Forever Now and Then!

The Farmers Wife
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