Gluten free Chinese food, Part II

The food: homemade gluten-free lemon chicken

The story:

Inspired by a successful gluten-free experience at P.F. Chang’s , I decided to try making a version of Chinese-style lemon chicken at home.

I looked up recipes for lemon chicken trying to find one to adapt to my purposes, but most featured a heavier batter than the dusting of cornstarch that appeared to be what P.F. Chang’s had used.

When I thought about it, P.F. Chang’s lemon chicken actually looked more like tori karaage, the Japanese version of fried chicken (and one of my favorite restaurant dishes) than like anything else, so I decided to prepare my gluten-free version in the style of tori karaage, and serve it with a lemon sauce.

I marinated the boneless chicken in wheat-free tamari and ginger, coated it in cornstarch, pan-fried it in a little oil, served it over a lemony sauce with some steamed broccoli, et voila! Another gluten free menu staple is born – chez multicultural nous, anyway.

Gluten Free Lemon Chicken, Tori Karaage Style

For the lemon sauce:

1 T. cornstarch, dissolved in small amount of cold water
1 c. chicken broth
juice of 1 lemon
3 T. brown sugar
3 T. liquid honey
1 tsp. minced ginger

Put chicken broth, lemon juice, brown sugar, honey and ginger into skillet or pan and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Turn heat down to a simmer. Stir in cornstarch mixture and simmer 2-3 minutes until thick and syrupy. Keep warm.

For the chicken:

2 boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch by 1/2 inch chunks
2 T. gluten-free soy sauce or tamari
1 tsp. minced ginger
1 tsp. sesame oil
about 1/2 c. cornstarch
2 – 3 T. oil for frying
2 T. toasted sesame seeds

1. Mix chicken pieces, tamari, ginger and sesame oil and marinate for 20-30 minutes.
2. Spread cornstarch on dinner plate and roll chicken pieces in cornstarch until coated. Place chicken pieces on another dinner plate.
3. Heat oil on medium high heat in a large skillet until a piece of coated chicken sizzles when added, then add more pieces to fill pan without crowding.
4. Saute chicken pieces, turning a few times, until browned all over and cooked through.
5. Wipe out pan and saute remaining chicken in same manner.
6. To serve, spoon warm sauce into dish, place chicken pieces over top, and add steamed broccoli, if desired. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.

Serves 2.

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