Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Yeah, Zen can cook. Zen can cook very well.

Thursday February 22, 2007 - 07:26pm

Yeah, Zen can cook. Zen can cook very well. magnify

I made all that food completely from scratch, minus the raising of chickens and grinding of flour of course. The egg-roll, wrapper and all, is homemade as well. I intend to take this one step further this year when my vegetable garden is in full swing. As is, all the ingredients were purchased at a local Farmer's Market. These small storage containers of food are what I send my wife to work with everyday. Do you really wonder why she keeps me home cooking? And yes, these recipes are mine completely. I didn't get them from anyone else and if you think it's close to yours, then great minds think alike and don't steal my recipes.

Ginger Chicken:
My own variety of precooked stir-fry chicken. This makes things alot easier if you eat stir-fry alot and don't want to have to cook everything all at once every time.

3lbs. Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts (sliced against the grain into thin strips)
1/2 cup Vegetable Oil
2 Tbl sp. Seasoning Salt
1 Tbl sp. Garlic powder
3Tbl sp. Ginger powder
1 1/2 Tbl sp. Cinnamon powder
1/4 cup Sugar

Heat a large seasoned wok (you can use a saucepan, but it will burn quickly) over high heat. Add Vegetable Oil and allow to warm up. Carefully add Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts. Add spices evenly across Chicken quickly in the order they are listed above and stir. Allow Chicken to reach an internal temperature of at least 190° and then quickly add Sugar, turn off heat and stir. When Chicken cools enough to be handled, place in storage container for freezing or refrigerating. Use in your stir-fry straight from the bag with your vegetables or reheat and pour Sweet and Sour Sauce (see below) over top. Best served over warm Jasmine rice.

Sweet and Sour Sauce:
I looked high and low to find a decent "Sweet and Sour" sauce that didn't rely on ketchup or food coloring to give it the proper color. I tried packaged mixes, pre-made bottles and various recipes online and offline. Nothing worked. So I experimented until I found something that turned out perfect. Itadakimasu! :)

2 cups Chicken Stock (water may be substituted)
2/3 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
1 15 ounce can of Tomato Sauce
1 1/2 Cups Sugar
3 Bell Peppers, cut into thin slices and then cut in half (32 slices)
1 Whole Pineapple, cut into chunks
2 Firm Tomatoes, cut into slices (16 slices)
1/4 to 1/2 cup Cornstarch mixed with equal amounts of water

In a large wok (or saucepan) over medium-high heat, mix Chicken Stock, Apple Cider Vinegar, Tomato Sauce and Sugar. Cook for 15 minutes, stirring constantly until Sugar dissolves. Do not allow to burn or vigorously boil! Add Bell Peppers, Pineapple Chunks and Tomatoes. Return to light boil, stirring occasionally. Stir in Cornstarch and water mixture slowly until desired consistency is attained.

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