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10 ounces boneless chicken breast, cut into one and one-half-inch-long julienne pieces
1 large egg white
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup vegetable oil
5 cups and 3 Tablespoons chicken stock or water
2 Tablespoons rice wine or dry sherry
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
2 Tablespoons white vinegar
2 Tablespoons sugar
pinch of ground white pepper
2 scallions, trimmed and minced
4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
2 teaspoons peeled and minced fresh ginger
2 teaspoons hot bean paste
1 Tablespoon cornstarch mixed with one-third-cup cold water
1 teaspoon chili oil
1. Mix chicken, egg white, cornstarch, salt, and one tablespoon of the oil, and set aside in a medium bowl.
2. Bring five cups of stock to the boil, add one tablespoon of the oil, then the spinach, and cook for forty-five seconds until the spinach turns bright green, remove, drain, and put on a serving platter and cover with foil.
3. Heat wok or pan, add the remaining oil, and add the chicken pieces, a few at a time, stir them for about forty-five seconds, remove and drain; and repeat until all are oil-blanched.
4. Discard all but two tablespoons of oil from the wok or pan. In a bowl, mix the three tablespoons of stock, the rice wine, soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, and white pepper.
5. Heat wok with its oil, add scallions, garlic, and ginger, then add the chicken stock mixture, hot bean paste, and the recently stirred cornstarch-water mixture. Bring to the boil, return the chicken to the wok or pan, add the chili oil, and stir-fry for half minute until chicken is barely cooked (it will continue to cook until it is served). Remove foil from the spinach and, put this mixture on top of it and serve.