Take Out at Home

Posted by Brette in Food

broc oysterLucinda Scala Quinn recently appeared on Martha’s show to demonstrate some recipes from October Everyday Food – one of which was Broccoli with Oyster Sauce. The magazine also included a recipe for Cashew Chicken. I made them together one night with some brown rice. I like making Chinese at home, but it’s always so much prep work. The actual cooking is always very quick, but I end up with piles of dishes and opened bottles all over the counter. And I’m always exhausted at the end.

The broccoli dish was very easy.  You cook some garlic and then add your broccoli to the pan where you saute it until it is bright green. Then you add a little water and cover until it’s cooked and then  stir in the sauce. I’ve never cooked broccoli like this; I usually steam it. It did turn a very pretty green color and it was a very quick method. I loved the oyster sauce, which has a nice deep flavor to it.

The cashew chicken was a little more involved. You mix the chicken with cashew chickenginger, sherry, salt and cornstarch and let it sit for half an hour in the fridge. Then you cook it, remove it and cook your garlic, cashews, and scallions. Then you add the chicken back in and the mixture you’ve made up for the sauce (chicken broth, soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, and cornstarch) and the cashews.

My chicken did not really brown – there was a lot of liquid in it. I should have poured some off and tried to get a better sear on it. The end result was ok, but not great. It all just looked too pale to me and I also felt it was lacking flavor. I think it needed some vegetables to liven it up a little and I also would have increased the amount of ginger and garlic. It just needed some oomph. We ended up mixing the broccoli and chicken together with the rice to get it to taste like something. Other than that, it was a decent dish and much cheaper than take out.

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