Kung POW! @$&*

We are in the beginning hectic swirl of moving to another condo. This weekend we moved the majority of the upstairs furniture (master bedroom and Bella’s bedroom) into the garage. Our plan is to be ready for a moving truck move next Sunday, even though we will technically still living here until the following Friday.

Within our crazy weekend of packing, cleaning, moving, and having two out-of-town guests (they were a big help) there were two stand-out moments. Chad saw The Dark Knight, which he proclaimed the best movie he’s seen this year, and a definite ten out of ten (At the moment it’s also the number one movie on IMDb’s top 250 and it’s broken records for top-grossing movie in three days…)

And I made my first batch of Kung Pao Chicken! Besides being delicious, it’s fast and easy to make. I share Mark Bittman’s recipe here, with a few of my own notes. Note: I didn’t measure any of the ingredients.

1/2 tsp cornstarch

1 tbsp Shaoxing wine or dry sherry (I got the cheapest sherry from Trader Joe’s)

1 1/2- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2 chunks (I buy in bulk and pack several ziplocks of chicken meat in the freezer)

3 tbs corn, grapeseed, or other neutral oil (I used canola)

5 small dried chiles (I used one chili powder packet from our last take-out pizza)

2 garlic cloves, minced (I used at least 4 cloves, and pressed them)

one 1/2 piece of ginger, peeled and minced (I cut it into slices, so the ginger flavor would be milder and the girls could fish the pieces out)

1 tsp sugar

3 Tbs soy sauce

1 tsp dark sesame oil

1 scallion, trimmed and chopped

1/2 roasted peanuts, chopped (roasted 1 cup from TJ’s and didn’t chop…)

1. Whisk cornstarch into the sherry. Mix in chicken. Let marinate.

2. Heat oil in wok, add chiles until slightly blackened (5 min). Add garlic and ginger for 10 seconds. Add chicken and cook through.

3. Turn heat low. Add sugar and soy sauce and cook 5 min. more. Remove from heat and stir in sesame oil and scallions. Garnish with peanuts.

I guarantee this will be a hit with your family. Especially over rice and with a veggie side.

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