I am a total “foodgawkerholic”!  There are so many pictures of different foods that I find myself browsing for hours.
I recently came across Appetite for China General Tso Chicken and it seemed simple enough, so I decided to try it out.
I was happy to find that I already had most of the ingredients which made things even easier.  The marinade, and starch combination produced a crispy fried chicken that wasn’t overly battered and retained it’s crispiness even after the sauce was added.  I only had 4 chilli peppers instead of the 8 that the recipe called for but it worked out perfect amount of heat for me.  The sauce itself was a nice combination of sweet/sour/spicy.  I was very happy with the way it turned out and would definitely use this recipe again.



1 pound chicken (skinless and boneless, breast or thighs are fine)
1 1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 cups of peanut or vegetable oil for frying / plus 1 tablespoon for stir-frying
8 dried whole red chilis, or substitute 1/4 teaspoon dried red chili flakes
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon white sesame seeds
Scallions for garnish


1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
2 egg whites

1/4 cup chicken stock, or substitute water
1 1/2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon hoisin sauce
1 teaspoon chili paste
1 teaspoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon cornstarch

Prepare the marinade: In a large bowl, combine the soy sauce, rice wine, and egg whites. Coat the chicken to the marinade mixture and let sit for 10 minutes.

Prepare the sauce: In a small bowl, combine the chicken stock, tomato paste, sugar, soy sauce, rice vinegar, hoisin sauce, chili paste, sesame oil, and the 1 teaspoon of cornstarch. Stir until the sugar and cornstarch are dissolved. Set the sauce aside.

In a large bowl or deep plate, toss the 1 1/2 cups cornstarch with the salt and pepper. Coat the marinated chicken in the cornstarch and shake off any excess before frying.

Heat the 3 cups of peanut or vegetable oil in your wok until it registers 350°F on an instant-read oil thermometer. Working in 2 or 3 batches, add the first batch of chicken cubes and fry until golden brown on the outside and cooked through, about 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Repeat with the rest of the chicken.

Drain the oil into a heatproof container and save for discarding. Wipe the wok with a paper towel to remove any brown bits, but don’t wash.

Reheat the wok or skillet over medium-high heat. Add another 1 tablespoon of oil and swirl to coat the base and sides. Add the dried chilis and garlic to the wok and stir-fry until just fragrant, about 20 seconds. Pour in the sauce mixture and stir until thickened, about 1 to 2 minutes.

Return the chicken to the wok and stir well to coat with sauce. Transfer the chicken to a serving dish. Garnish with white sesame seeds and scallions. Serve with white rice and vegetables.

Serves 4 as part of a multi-course meal, 2 to 3 as a main entree.

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