Sweet and Sour Chicken (Ku Lou Yok)
Serves 4 hungry men
This is a hybrid version of Chinese Sweet and Sour Chicken, not quite the usual western take-a-way take on it, where it is often served as an appetiser, though not either quite the full Chinese experience either.
It is a filling and delicious meal that will leave everyone wanting more. Sweet and Sour Chicken is equally good with Pork making it 'Ku Lou Yok' and is enjoyable whilst sharing many dishes, or on its own as the main meal when served with rice. I like to serve this with lots of vegetables and steamed rice as a whole meal.
Prep time: 30mins
Cooking Time: 15mins
You Will Need:
700g Chicken (or Pork if preferred)
500ml of Vegetable Oil (For deep frying)
250g Pineapple Chunks (Drained if in juice)
2 Red Onions
2 Red Chillies
4 Cloves Garlic
2 slices of ginger
2tbsp Soy Sauce
1tbsp Rice Vinegar
1tbsp Sesame Oil
Ground black Pepper
For Sweet and Sour Sauce:
4tbsp Tomato Ketchup
2tbsp Brown Sugar
2tbsp Plum Sauce
2tbsp Rice Vinegar
300g Long Grain Rice - Steamed (Long-grain rice - 1 cup / Water - 1.5 cups)
1. Prepare the marinade for the Chicken; Mix the soy sauce, rice vinegar and sesame oil with a pinch of black pepper. It does not look like much but will cover the chicken. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and place in the marinade.
2. Leave the chicken in the fridge to marinate for 25 minutes whilst preparing vegetables, garlic, ginger and chillies. Take out the cucumber and tomato pulp so that the veg is crunchier.
3. Now is a good time to wash off the excess starch from the rice. This will prevent it from making a sticky mess. Put the rice in a deep bowl, and in your sink, run cold tap water over it. Once the bowl is full of water, use your fingers to swish the rice around. The water will start getting murky. Now gently pour this water out. Repeat this process until the water is mostly clear. This will take at least 4-5 washes. Now fill it up one last time. Do not wash the rice again. Just leave it in there, covered with water, for about 20 minutes or so, so you can put the rice in to start cooking as you start to fry the chicken.
4. Coat the marinated chicken in cornflour, ensuring that the chicken is covered in, as much cornflour as possible, do not be scared to get your hands dirty. The better you cover the chicken pieces, the better this batter will work.
5. Add the rice now to a pan (please make sure for steamed rice, it is a flat based pan and you have a tight lid) of boiling water, one and a half times the quantity of the dry rice. (1-cup rice, 1 1/2-cup water.) Resist the urge to lift the lid and peek at the rice. Let it cook for 15 minutes on a low setting, and when ready leave to stand for 5 minutes with the lid on before serving. This should be enough time to complete the rest of the meal.
6. Heat the oil in the Wok hot enough, ready to deep-fry the chicken pieces. Put the chicken pieces in, and fry until golden brown. Drain the oil off the chicken pieces as you take it out and place it in a bowl ready for later.
7. Leave enough oil in the Wok ready to stir fry all the vegetables. Place the chopped garlic and ginger into Wok, and fry until aromatic. Then add cucumber, tomato, carrots, chillies and onion for a couple of minutes.
8. Pour in tomato sauce, plum sauce, vinegar and 1 tbsp of water, stir-fry until mix well and thick, if not think enough, add cornflour until it is thick enough.
9. Add the fried chicken back to the Wok and add the drained Pineapple chunks. Add sugar and salt to taste, and get ready to serve your tasty Sweet and Sour Chicken, with your lovely steamed rice.
Serve with Steamed Rice in a bowl, or let everyone share from the middle of the table.
How about trying this same recipe with Pork Loin instead of Chicken?
Meal as I serve it...
Recipe Adapted from: SEAsiaFood
Rice Tip adapted from: ShiokFood
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