Gotta say, I love a good stir-fry--the veggies, the sauce, the quick prep and cooking time. They make for great weeknight dinners! Sure, you could order in but when you make it yourself you can control exactly what goes into the dish, so you can also keep it fairly healthy too! This stir-fry is chock full of green beans, mushrooms and chicken, all coated in a tangy teriyaki sauce. Dinner, anyone?
When I was a little kid, my mom went through a serious Chinese cooking phase. My dad would drive down to Chinatown to get her all the special authentic ingredients she needed and she'd spend the day chopping and prepping. I tell you this not just to bore you, I mean entertain, with my fun family stories, but because the real secret of making great Chinese food is being prepared. You've got to have all your meat and veggies cut up and ready to go and all your spices, condiments and measuring spoons all lined up, because the cooking happens in a flash. Walk away from a stir-fry to get the soy sauce or break up some squabbling children, and you risk burning everything, so tell everyone to leave you alone for the 10 minutes or so, it takes to cook everything!
The good news is that stir-fries are extremely versatile and you can pretty much sub in or omit any veggie or protein you like and the results will still be great.
So get your chopsticks, guys, it's Teriyaki Tuesday! Yum!!
Chicken Teriyaki with Green Beans and Mushrooms
Makes 4 servings
Prep Time: 30-40 minutes
For the Sauce
3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon mirin
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1-2 shakes red pepper flakes
For the Stir-fry
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced thinly or cut into bite-sized pieces
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon unbleached, all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons Chinese rice cooking wine or dry sherry
3 medium garlic cloves, minced
2-3 scallions, minced
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon vegetable oil, divided
1 pound green beans, ends trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces (you can totally cheat and buy a bag of the pre-trimmed kind)
1/4 cup water
8 ounces mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
White or brown rice (optional)
1. To make the sauce: Whisk all the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.
2. To make the stir-fry: Place the sesame oil, cornstarch, flour, soy sauce and rice wine in a small bowl and whisk together. Add the cut up chicken and let marinate for at least 10 minutes and up to 1 hour. In a separate small bowl, mix together the garlic, scallions and 1 teaspoon of the vegetable oil. This is a good time to put on a pot of rice if you're planning on serving this with rice.
3. In a large skillet, heat 1 1/2 teaspoons of the vegetable oil over high heat until barely smoking. Add half of the chicken. Break up any clumps and then let cook without stirring for 2-3 minutes, until the chicken is browned at the edges. Give it a good stir and cook for another few minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Transfer the chicken to a plate. Add another 1 1/2 teaspoons of oil and rest of the chicken. Repeat the procedure--then transfer chicken to the plate.
4. Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the skillet and when oil is very hot, add the green beans and cook for 1-2 minutes, until the beans start to get seared and a bit softer. Pour in the water, cover the pan and lower the heat to medium. Let steam for about 2 minutes, until the beans are crisp-tender. Uncover and add the mushrooms. Let cook for about 3-4 minutes, until the mushrooms are browned.
5. Make a little well in the center of the pan and add the garlic mixture, mashing the garlic down with a spoon, until you can really smell the garlic cooking, about 15-20 seconds. Then, stir the garlic mixture into the vegetables.
6. Add the chicken back in, along with any juices that may have accumulated on the plate. Give the sauce a quick whisk again and then add to the pan. Stir constantly, letting the sauce thicken and the chicken reheat, for about 1 minute. Serve immediately.
Note: Recipe adapted from The Best Chicken Recipes by the Editors of Cook's Illustrated. I tinkered around with the proportions and ingredients and left out the 1 tablespoon of fresh ginger from the marinade.