Sunday, March 1, 2015

The Domestic Man's Sweet & Sour Chicken

Russ Crandall, aka the Domestic Man is one of my favorite figures in the paleo community. I am in awe of his back story, I love the way he writes and his recipes are all winners. And by winners I mean both my kids and significant other ALWAYS request I make them again.

I don't think my offspring have ever experienced Chinese takeout sweet & sour chicken, and the last time I ate the dish I was probably in my teens. I've made some chicken and pork dishes with a sweet & sour flavor profile, but never tried to create the fried, crispy chicken that's the trademark of the dish.

It did seem counter-intuitive to dip the chicken in egg AFTER dredging it through starch, but it did crisp up perfectly. The sauce reduced beautifully and had all of the right flavors. I made some roasted cauliflower rice while cooking up the chicken, and dinner was on the table in no time. Everyone gave this a huge thumbs up! It will definitely be added to my rotation.

Paleo Sweet & Sour Chicken
adapted from The Domestic Man

1 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
3 tbs. raw honey
2 tbs. tomato paste
1 tbs. coconut aminos
3/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. white pepper

everything else:
1/4 coconut oil (I need to use a little bit more)
2 lb. chicken breasts, cut into bite-size chunks
1/2 cup plus 1 tbs. arrowroot starch, divided
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. white pepper
2 beaten eggs
1/2 tsp. sesame seeds
2 sliced green onions

Preheat oven to 250.

To make the sauce, combine all ingredients in a small pot on the stove top. Bring to a simmer of medium heat, then reduce heat and allow to cook and thicken while you prepare the chicken.

Combine 1/2 cup arrowroot with salt and pepper in a shallow dish. Put beaten eggs in another.

Melt coconut oil in a wok over medium heat.

Coat chicken pieces in arrowroot, then dip in egg. Allow excess to drip off before adding to pan. Don't overcrowd the wok (it took me 3 batches to cook all of my chicken).

Allow chicken to cook for 6-8 minutes, flipping occasionally. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate, then put in the oven to stay warm.

Continue to cook the chicken, adding more oil to the wok if necessary.

When you get to the end of the chicken, taste your sauce for seasoning. Combine remaining tbs. of arrowroot with a little water in a small bowl, stirring to create a slurry. Stir into sauce and bring to a low boil, then remove from heat.

Toss chicken with sauce until all meat is thoroughly coated. Serve chicken over cauliflower rice, garnished with sesame seeds and green onion.

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