This is probably one of the best-known Westernized Chinese dishes, appearing on menus in many Chinese restaurants.
Curiously enough, the Chinese name implies ‘ten gold treasures’ stir-fried with chicken – in the West, mostly chicken breast. It uses a simple method of combining chicken with whatever vegetables are in season and inexpensive. You can easily make this recipe your own by improvising with your choice of vegetables. Cooked properly, it makes a delightful, easy chicken dish that is tasty with plain rice.
Cut the chicken into 2.5 cm (
Heat a wok until it is very hot and then add the groundnut oil. When the oil is very hot, remove the wok from the heat and immediately add the chicken pieces, stirring vigorously to keep them from sticking. As soon as the chicken pieces turn white, in about 2 minutes, quickly drain them in a stainless steel colander set in a bowl to catch the oil. Reserve
Heat a wok or large frying pan over a high heat until it is hot. Swirl in the reserved
If you choose to use water instead of oil, bring it to the boil in a saucepan. Remove the saucepan from the heat and immediately add the chicken pieces, stirring vigorously to keep them from sticking. When the chicken pieces turn white, in about 2 minutes, quickly drain the chicken in a stainless steel colander set in a bowl. Discard the water.
Feel free to substitute other types of vegetables, such as mange-touts, sugar snap peas, carrots or leeks. One of the beauties of this recipe is that you can so easily improvise according to what’s in season: a spring version with asparagus, peas and mangetouts; an autumn version with carrots, leeks, celeriac and turnips.
© 1998 Ken Hom. All rights reserved.