Spicy chicken, asparagus and peanut stir-fry

I love East Asian food so much, particularly how easy it is to throw together at home! This is something I really missed whilst travelling in South America, as even good soy sauce was hard to come by. It was great to come back to London and stock up on supplies, and now that my store cupboard is full once more, I can just get down to cooking.

Lee Kum Kee are the inventors of oyster sauce (who knew??), an amazingly flavourful concoction, and they also stock a huge array of other Asian sauces, from gloriously spicy chili oil and all manner of soy sauce, to ready-made mixes for quick stir-fries at home. I grew up with it as a household name (we always had their black bean and garlic sauce in the fridge), and it is definitely worth using their stuff rather than the standard supermarket brand (I’m always a bit wary of a Sainsbury’s Basics soy sauce…).

The below is inspired by a Gordon Ramsay recipe (his chicken, asparagus and green bean stir-fry), but as always, I changed it a little. I decided to forgo the baby sweetcorn and green peppercorns in favour of peanuts, and marinated the chicken for extra tenderness. I used asparagus, pak choi, carrot, and spinach for this recipe, but you could pretty much use any vegetables you have lying around. It’s a great recipe to use up leftover vegetables (I’m very consciously trying to reduce my food waste), and of course you could use pork, prawn, or tofu in place of chicken.

I used three very small, bright red chilis, and the dish was pretty darn spicy, so if you prefer it a bit milder, use just one, or forgo them and add a bit of chili oil on top.

Serves 4 people

Marinade:

  • 250g chicken breast (equivalent to about 2 breasts), chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce

Stir-fry:

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 red onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 inch/20g ginger, finely chopped
  • 3 small (birds-eye) red chilis, finely chopped
  • 140g thin green asparagus (around 12 stalks), chopped diagonally into 1-inch pieces
  • 1-2 carrots or 1 red pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 bunches (250g) pak choi, roughly chopped
  • 100g spinach, roughly chopped
  • 5 tbsp Shaoxing rice wine
  • 3 tbsp Lee Kum Kee oyster sauce
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • Two handfuls roasted unsalted peanuts

Garnishing options:

  • Fried/poached egg
  • Chopped spring onion
  • Finely chopped red chili
  • Lee Kum Kee Chiu Chow Chilli Oil
  • Lee Kum Kee Double Deluxe soy sauce

Serving options:

  • Brown rice
  • Sticky rice
  • Lettuce wraps
  • Noodles

Heat the vegetable oil in a large frying pan or wok and fry the onion, ginger, garlic, and red chili on medium heat for 5-7 minutes until fragrant. Add the chicken and stir-fry for a couple of minutes until it’s nearly cooked through. Remove and keep aside.

Add all your veg to the pan with a bit of water and fry until it has reduced slightly (pak choi and spinach shrink like anything). Add the rice wine, oyster sauce, fish sauce and soy sauce and stir to combine. Add the chicken back in, fry for another minute or two, then add the peanuts and turn off the heat.

So many colours

I served the chicken with brown rice and a fried egg on top, but as described above, you could use sticky rice or noodles, or even grab some lettuce leaves and make healthy lettuce wraps. I also started the meal with a simple green salad of lettuce and cucumber with the LKK Oriental Sesame salad dressing – it’s so light and refreshing, and is a great way to Asianify (yep, that’s a word) your salad starter and impress guests!

Not the best presentation, but it tasted good…

I received the Lee Kum Kee sauces as a gift, but as always, all opinions are my own.

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