Chicken Asparagus Stir Fry

19 Apr

Yesterday finally, finally felt like spring. Oh sure, it was cloudy (again), but the trees finally burst open with buds and flowers and my windows were open and a breeze filled my house with fresh air, and I dared to put the winter coats away (don’t tell!!).

Time for some lighter food.

Spring means asparagus. You can buy it all year these days, ’tis true, but it’s best right now, when it’s local and soft and at its freshest peak in the market. So I bought a big bundle and brought it home and started searching for jumping-off points to incorporate it into a light, fresh dinner.

This started as a recipe from Food Network, and we really enjoyed it. I messed with some of the liquids and spices in it, added lemon (They wrote an asparagus recipe without lemon, and the fruit compliments the vegetable so well that I had to add it back in.), and fiddled with proportions in a few places. This is light and tasty without being overpowering, and I am very much looking forward to leftovers tonight.

This would be great with other green vegetables, either in addition to or in place of the asparagus if you don’t like asparagus for some reason. Broccoli, snap peas, or even those long French green beans would be delicious in this. Just be sure to not overcook them on their first run through the pan. You want that fresh-veggie crunch in the finished dish. I served it over rice, but it would be really good over rice noodles, too.

Celebrate the spring with some seasonal produce. You’ll need:

1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, sliced thinly against the grain

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 2-inch piece of garlic, either grated (I use my Microplane for this) or finely chopped

1 tbsp soy sauce (watch the label if you’re cooking this gluten-free)

3/4 tbsp sugar

1 tbsp cornstarch, plus another tsp

1 tbsp white wine

2/3 cup chicken broth

2 tbsp olive oil

1 bunch asparagus, ends removed and cut into 1-inch pieces

1 bunch scallions, chopped, greens only

In a large bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, wine, 1 tsp of the cornstarch, and half the garlic and ginger. Stir the chicken into this and let it marinate in the fridge for a half-hour, or on the counter for 15 minutes.

Heat up a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Add the oil, and then stir-fry the asparagus, scallions, half the garlic and half the ginger. Remove from the pan as soon as they’re bright green and crisp, and almost tender (they’ll cook a little more in a minute).

Put your tablespoon of cornstarch into a bowl and slowly whisk the chicken broth into it, so you don’t get lumps.

Pour the chicken mixture into the hot pan and stir-fry until the chicken is slightly brown and just cooked through. Stir the veggie mixture back into the chicken in the pan. Stir in the broth mixture and cook until it thickens up, which is about three minutes. Salt to taste and serve over rice.

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4 Responses to “Chicken Asparagus Stir Fry”

  1. Kate April 19, 2011 at 10:16 am #

    I am making this Thurs night for dinner! I can’t wait.

  2. Kate April 19, 2011 at 10:29 am #

    Kim,
    when I use cornstarch, I ALWAYS get lumps. How do I avoid this? It really ruins a beautiful sauce. I saw Martha Stewart add flour to a baby food jar with broth and vigorously shake it then she added it to her dish. Should I try that? Or a hand sifter? You know the handheld mesh strainer thingie? Clearly, I am well-versed in culinary arts. Hah! Your blog is always informative and full of great and new ideas. Rock on, Sister.

    Kate

    • Kim April 19, 2011 at 10:34 am #

      Add the liquid to the cornstarch, not the other way around. Put the cornstarch in a bowl, start whisking it (with a whisk, not a fork), and slowly stream the liquid in, stirring the whole time. 🙂

      Martha’s ideas rarely work for me. FWIW.

      • Kim April 19, 2011 at 10:35 am #

        OH! And if you have a pan of sauce that needs to be thickened, do the same thing with your cornstarch and a half-cup or so of the sauce that you’ve ladled out, and then stir that whole mixture into your pan. Don’t just dump the cornstarch in there.

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