Wednesday, October 23

General Tso's Chicken with Coconut Rice

this post is part of my 31 Day series. here is the beginning

Our family really likes Chinese food. We have pretty high standards, though, so we have yet to find the perfect place to eat it. This recipe for General Tso's is pretty good if you ask me. I found it on Pinterest in a crockpot version here. Since we like a saucier dish, the recipe below is double the original. It's simple to make and really hits the spot when we're craving something Chinese.
Let's start with the rice. Growing up, I was taught that rice had to be made very specifically or else it would be ruined. Measure the water, boil it, measure the rice, time it perfectly. Imagine my horror when Camillo came into my life and just sort of haphazardly threw rice together! If you are OCD about your rice cooking regime, I suggest skipping over this part. But if you're up for trying something new and living on the edge, read on!

Coconut Rice
About 3 cups of dry rice, rinsed (see below)
1 can coconut milk

Camillo taught me what a difference rinsing rice can make. At first, I kinda thought he was full of it but now I'm a firm believer and rinse it every time! Pour your rice into a large pot and cover with water, using your hands to mix it around, then strain it. Do this 2-3 times until the water is clear, and you will have light, fluffy rice once it's cooked!
After you've drained your rice the final time, pour coconut milk into the pot and stir until saturated. Here's the part that used to bug me ... Add just enough water so that it is about 3/4 inch deeper that the rice. Or, to get real technical 'one knuckle worth'. ha! Add some salt to taste, mix again, and set the pot on a large burner. Turn the burner on to High and wait for the water to start boiling. Once you get a good boil going, give your pot of rice one last stir and reduce heat to low. Let it cook for 15 minutes (perfect amount of time to cook your chicken!). When your timer goes off, check the rice. If it has a little bit more moisture, let it sit on the burner a couple more minutes. If it's dry, light, and fluffy, smelling deliciously like coconut, it's ready!!

General Tso's Chicken

1 pound chicken, cut to one inch cubes
1 1/2 tbs minced garlic
6 tbs brown sugar
2 tsp ground ginger
4 tbs soy sauce
1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
1-2 cups mixed veggies (more or less depending how you like it)

Over medium-high heat, cook chicken until browned. In the meantime, mix garlic, brown sugar, ginger, and soy sauce in a small bowl. When the chicken is nearly cooked through, pour sauce mixture over chicken and heat to a light boil. Add the mixed veggies and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for 5 minutes. Pour your chicken and veggies over the coconut rice and voila!! A delicious Chinese meal, sans the takeout boxes ;)


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