It’s that time again! Secret Recipe Club time! This is my sixth month with the club, and still having a ball. My favorite part is getting my assignment and then stalking my assigned blog, bookmarking all the recipes I want to try. I really love the secrecy and wonder how far the other members take it. I take it so far as to not even pin the recipes I want to try on Pinterest (how I usually keep track of recipes), for fear that the blog owner will find my bajillion pins and figure out I have their blog this month. That would ruin the surprise. I also don’t subscribe to the blog I’m assigned to, just in case they keep track of their subscribers, and I don’t leave comments. Nothing to let on that I’m the one that has their blog! The secrecy is pretty fun and makes me feel super sneaky. :)
This month, I was assigned to Quick and Easy, Cheap and Healthy, and boy did I have fun scouring Anne’s archives. Although you may not be able to tell it from the amount of buttery, sugary treats I post, I really love healthy food, especially if it’s easy to prepare (kinda helps balance out all the time and calories in my desserts), so this blog was perfect for me! I counted the recipes I bookmarked and know this has got to be a personal record: 44. No joke. Um, Amanda (Amanda started the club), is there a reward for “most recipes bookmarked in a SRC assignment?” ;)
But when I came across Anne’s Lemongrass Chicken, there was little doubt that it was the winning recipe. The grocery store closest to us started carrying lemongrass a couple years ago, and was really happy to have an excuse to buy some! Of course, when I went to buy it, they were out. Of course! So off I went to my trusty Asian market, and I found a big bucket of lemongrass stalks, bundled in bunches of 3 for $1. Can’t beat that!
My friend, Pia, mailed me some vegetable cutters for Christmas and while I was trying to think of what veggies I could add to the chicken (I bulk up most of our meals with as many veggies as I can), I thought of those cutters and knew I’d be adding in some pretty peppers. I know most people will not have these special cutters (I believe you can buy them at Asian markets, though), so just slice your peppers if you don’t–it will still make a very colorful and pretty dish!
Thanks, Anne, for sharing this wonderful recipe! It was the MOST delicious dish I’ve ever made with SRC, hands down. I’ve never had lemongrass before, and I was surprised (though I shouldn’t have been) that it smelled exactly like the lemongrass soap that my sister makes! It has a bright & fresh slightly lemony smell and flavor. It looks like a green onion, and has a fibrous texture similar to ginger. It is very good and I hope that you have an Asian market near you so you can make this chicken.
I do want to mention that I made this sweet, almost as sweet as the sauces you get on Americanized Chinese fare, so if you want a more subtle sweetness, halve the honey. I started with 1/4 cup, which was good but barely sweet. I wanted it sweeter and my recipe reflect the change I made to 1/2 cup honey, but you might want to start with less and taste it once the chicken is cooked. You can always add more!
Lemongrass Chicken with Peppers
3 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
½ cup honey
½ cup soy sauce, divided
1 teaspoon (1 clove) minced garlic
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons canola oil
½ cup (about 1 large stalk) minced fresh lemongrass
3 green onions, chopped
½ of a red pepper, cut into strips or shapes
½ of a green pepper, cut into strips or shapes
½ of a yellow pepper, cut into strips or shapes
¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
In a gallon-sized Ziploc bag or in a large bowl, combine chicken, honey, ¼ cup of the soy sauce, and garlic, and allow to marinate 10-15 minutes (this is a good time to prep your veggies). Mix the remaining ¼ cup soy sauce with the cornstarch and set aside.
Heat an extra-large skillet over medium-high heat and add the oil. Add lemongrass and stir-fry for about 15 seconds, until fragrant but not brown. Add the chicken, and continue to stir-fry until the pieces are cooked through, about ten minutes. Stir the soy sauce & cornstarch mixture, and add it to the skillet along with the green onions and peppers. Stir-fry until sauce is thickened and serve hot over rice, topped with a sprinkle of cilantro.
Makes 6-8 servings
I have to pimp my Tupperware lady, Stacy, because I just got a rice maker from her and used it to prepare my brown rice for this dish. There are only instructions for white rice and a few other quick-cooking grains on the insert, so here’s how I did mine if you get one and want to make brown rice (the insert does say it can be used for brown rice, but doesn’t give instructions): 1 cup brown rice, 2 1/4 cups water. 5 minutes on high, 30 minutes on 50% power in a 1000 watt microwave. (The rice cooker is BPA-free, in case you are worried about cooking your rice in plastic.) Perfect brown rice, and a little faster than it takes on the stove! Get your own rice cooker here.