I was in the mood to make a white wine/lemon/butter sauce but then I found some water chestnuts and remembered a fun chicken stir fry that I like to make sometimes, so I used components of both. Turned out great! I hope you enjoy.
4 Chicken thighs – skinless and boneless
3 celery stalks – cut into ½ in pieces
2 shallots – cut into very thin circles
4 cloves of garlic – rough dice
2 cans of water chestnuts
~ 2 tbsp avocado oil (Grapeseed, canola, or another high smoke point oil is also fine)
2 tbsp EVOO
1 cup of chicken stock
1 lemon (Juice)
2 tbsp butter
soy sauce (Tamari) 1 tbsp
dried dill 1 tbsp (2-3x if fresh dill available)
1 tbsp dried basil (4-5 leaves if fresh is available)
1 tbsp crushed red pepper
Celery leaves (Optional) if available from the celery bunch – finely diced
Chicken Stir Fry Directions :
To make this chicken stir fry I used a cast iron pan for this recipe and would highly recommend it because of the high and consistent heat that allows you to sear the chicken well and still maintain the moisture. I am sure you could achieve similar results with a wok.
Drain water chestnuts and place in a bowl. Toss with soy sauce (I use tamari) and let it rest for later.
Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper. Do not be afraid to season well, as this makes all the difference in delicious chicken. A good portion is lost to the pan as you saute the chicken.
Heat the cast iron until it smokes slightly. This is incredibly important to properly cook both the chicken and to saute the veggies.
Add avocado oil and let it heat up for an additional minute. It will run quickly in the pan, and again the pan will smoke slightly.
Place the chicken in the pan, laying them away from you. Do not move them in the pan. They will release as they sear. Cook for 3-4 minutes per side. I like to cook to a slight pink and then finish it off for the last minute once the sauce is complete in the pan. Remove and let cool for 5 minutes while you make your veggies and sauce. Once cool, slice the chicken into bite sized pieces and set aside.
You may also like :
- Sheet Pan Shrimp Boil : best savory food
- Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo in the Instant pot.
- Japanese cheese cake: fluffy and soft base cake
With the heat still cranking, add EVOO and immediately add celery. EVOO has a much lower smoking point, so you don’t want to heat it in a searing cast iron pan. On the other hand it does add to the flavor of the vegetable which is why I use it.
Add the celery immediately and saute. After a couple of minutes add the shallots. Then after another couple of minutes add the garlic. Saute for a couple of minutes until the garlic just gets the slightest touch of brown.
At this point, you want to arrest the browning of the garlic by adding liquid. Deglaze with white wine and scrape your pan of the fond. After a minute to allow much of the alcohol to cook off, add the chicken stock and, keeping the heat high, allow this to reduce for a few minutes. Depending on how quickly it reduces you may want to lower the heat to medium.
While reducing, use a mortar and pestle to ground the dill, basil and crushed red pepper. This isn’t absolutely necessary, but I like to do this to release more flavor from dried herbs and to more evenly spread the heat through your dish. Add to the sauce. Also add the finely diced celery leaves.
At this point you can add the water chestnuts. These don’t need to be cooked for too long, which is why I wait to add them toward the end.
When the sauce thickens enough that a spatula begins to leave a trail, squeeze your lemon. After another minute, add the butter in slices to finish the sauce. As it melts, add the chicken pieces to finish off.
Cook for another minute or two until the chicken is finished, the sauce has reached a luscious consistency, and everything is coated beautifully. A little Italian, a little Asian, and a ton of fun to make.
Enjoy your Italian Asian Chicken Stir Fry