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Gung Bao Chicken

Black pottery bowl filled with the Chinese dish gung bao chicken
This gung bao chicken, made with boneless chicken breast, chiles, Szechuan peppercorns, and peanuts, is authentic Szechuan fare.
John Gregory-Smith

Prep 25 mins
Cook 10 mins
Total 35 mins
Entrees
Chinese
4 servings
296 kcal

Ingredients 

  • 1/3 cup unsalted peanuts
  • 1 pound (or a little more) boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into 3/4-inch (18-mm) cubes
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 4 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable or unroasted peanut oil
  • 1 teaspoon Szechuan peppercorns
  • 2 dried red chilies roughly chopped or crushed
  • 2 garlic cloves peeled and very thinly sliced
  • One knob ginger peeled and very thinly sliced
  • 4 scallions trimmed and chopped

Directions 

  • Heat a wok over medium heat. Add the peanuts and gently toast the peanuts, shaking the pan occasionally, until they're a beautiful golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer the peanuts to a plate to cool.
  • Meanwhile, place the chicken, cornstarch, and half the soy sauce in a large bowl and gently toss until all of the chicken is well coated. Cover and set aside for 10 minutes.
  • Heat the wok over medium heat and add the oil. Once the oil is hot, remove the wok from the heat and throw in the Szechuan peppercorns and dried red chilies. Stir continuously 20 to 30 seconds, until the chilies start to turn light brown in color.
  • Place the wok over medium-high heat then add the chicken. Fry 2 to 3 minutes, until it just starts to turn golden. Then add the garlic, ginger, scallions, and peanuts. Stir-fry constantly until the chicken is cooked through and tender, 1 to 2 minutes. Pour the remaining soy sauce over the chicken, toss well, and serve immediately.