Monday, February 1, 2010

Cashew Chicken

The key to a great Chinese stir-fried chicken dish is simple: smooth and tender chicken meat lightly coated with a sauce, stir-fried over HIGH heat using a wok to achieve the breath of wok. To make the chicken tender, many restaurants and Chinese chefs use BAKING SODA.

Baking soda serves two purposes:
  1. to rid the chicken of any potential foul chicken smell
  2. to tenderize the meat. 
SECRET TECHNIQUE: BAKING SODA is the secret weapon to make any meat–chicken, beef, pork–tender.

Once you try out this Cashew Chicken recipe, you will never go back to the gooey, sticky, starchy Cashew Chicken from your neighborhood Chinese joints again!


Boneless and skinless chicken breast 700g (cut into small cubes)
½ cup cashew nuts
1 small green capsicum, cut into small square pieces
1 small red capsicum, cut into small square pieces
1 small onion, cut into small square pieces
225g tinned pineapple pieces in syrup, drained


1 tsp baking soda
2½ tsp corn flour
1½ tsp Chinese rice wine


1½ tbsp oyster sauce
2 tsp soy sauce
½ cup water
1½ tsp sugar
1½ tsp Chinese rice wine
½ tsp sesame oil


  1. Marinate the chicken meat with the baking soda for 20 minutes and then rinse the chicken thoroughly (make sure that the chicken is properly rinsed clean of the baking soda).
  2. Pat the chicken meat dry with paper towels and then marinate with the rest of the ingredients for 15 minutes.
  3. Mix the sauce together and set aside.
  4. Heat up a wok with 1 tablespoon of cooking oil over high heat and stir-fry the chicken meat until the color turns white or half-cooked. Dish out and set aside.
  5. Add another 1 tablespoon of cooking oil into the wok and add in the ginger slices, capsicums and onion.
  6. Stir-fry until you smell the peppery aroma from the capsicum and add the chicken meat back in.
  7. Add in the sauce and coat all the ingredients with the sauce.
  8. Then add in the cashew nuts and pineapple pieces and stir continuously until the chicken meat is cooked through. Add salt to taste, dish out and serve the Cashew Chicken hot with steamed white rice.
Notes & Tips

If using chicken thigh fillets, it is not necessary to add baking soda to tenderise it as this cut of chicken retains its moisture during the cooking process, unlike chicken breast which can "dry out" when cooked.

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