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2013 Cooking Club Week 34: Takeaway style sweet'n'sour chicken balls with fried rice

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  • 29-08-2013 4:29pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 9,552 ✭✭✭


    Deep fried chicken balls with egg fried rice and sweet and sour sauce

    A day early! Authentic Chinese food is a healthy option, featuring plenty of vegetables and steamed fish, etc. And then there's the food you get from Chinese takeaways in this part of the world - dripping with fat and about as authentically Chinese as I am. And we Irish love it! This recipe is for Chinese takeaway style sweet and sour chicken balls with egg fried rice on the side - a perennial favourite. Apologies for the poor photos - my great plans of a leisurely cook with ample time for quality photos disappeared in a cloud of screaming children and a ticking clock!
    Serves 4

    Egg Fried Rice
    Ingredients
    1 large egg
    300g (approx - uncooked weight) basmati rice
    3 tablespoons vegetable oil
    3 tablespoons dark soy sauce
    Peas and finely chopped spring onions (optional)
    Black pepper

    Method
    1. Fill a pan with water and bring to the boil.
    2. Rinse the rice thoroughly with cold water until the water runs clear. Add the rice to the pan and return to the boil; lower heat and simmer for 8 - 10 minutes or as directed on the packet.
    3. Drain the rice and immediately rinse thoroughly with cold water. Drain and place in the fridge overnight.
    4. Add a small amount of oil to a large frying pan and heat to medium - high. Crack the egg into the pan and quickly stir fry, breaking the egg into pieces with a spatula. Remove the egg and set aside (forgot to photograph this, sorry).
    5. Add the rest of the oil to the pan and heat. Add the cooked rice and quickly stir fry for 3 - 4 minutes, ensuring all the rice is coated with oil.
    rice01_zps414d92eb.jpg

    6. Add the soy sauce and continue to stir fry for another 2 minutes or so.
    rice02_zps77dd7cca.jpg


    7. Add the spring onions and peas (if using), a pinch of black pepper and the reserved egg. Fry for one minute more.
    rice03_zps67224299.jpg

    8. Remove rice to serving container and keep hot.



    Sweet and sour sauce
    Ingredients
    120ml tomato ketchup
    40ml white vinegar
    140ml water
    1/2 tsp soy sauce
    140g white sugar
    70g Brown sugar
    Assorted vegetables – onion, peppers, etc. (optional)
    3 tbsp cornflour
    60ml water

    Method
    1. In a small pot the first six ingredients. Over low - medium heat, bring to the boil and simmer for 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
    sauce01_zpsb5a6acf2.jpg

    2. add vegetables, if using.
    sauce02_zpsbd72856a.jpg

    2. In a bowl, combine to 60ml water and cornflour until milky.
    sauce03_zpsad1c6045.jpg

    3. Add to the sauce pot and simmer for 2 - 3 minutes.
    sauce04_zps2dfab291.jpg

    4. Remove sauce to serving container and keep hot.



    Chicken balls
    Ingredients
    180g plain flour
    180g cornflour
    11/2 tbsp baking powder
    1 tsp sugar
    330ml water
    4 chicken fillets
    Oil for deep frying (approx 1 litre)

    Method
    1. In a large bowl, combine the first five ingredients. Whisk until a smooth batter is formed.
    batter02_zpsa925661f.jpg

    2. Heat the oil in a large pan to medium - high (the more space, the less likely your chicken balls will stick together). You may need to heat for up to 10 minutes - the oil must be at full temperature before you start cooking!
    3. Cut each chicken breast into bite size pieces.
    chicken01_zpsecb3853f.jpg

    4. Place the chicken pieces into the batter.
    chicken02_zps85b78604.jpg

    5. Remove the pieces one by one from the batter and carefully add to the oil.
    chicken03_zps78d049ce.jpg

    6. Fry for 5 - 6 minutes until batter is golden and and chicken is cooked through. You may need to cook the pieces in batches - do not put too many in the pot at once (like I did) or they will cook more slowly and may stick together.




    The end result (sloppily dumped on a plate)!
    finished_zps09fdd619.jpg


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Comments

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 30,657 Mod ✭✭✭✭Faith


    Well there's all my future hangovers taken care of!!


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Politics Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 12,110 CMod ✭✭✭✭Dizzyblonde


    Oh that looks amazing - I'll definitely make it! :)


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,698 ✭✭✭✭Princess Peach


    Daaaaaaamn.

    And it's healthy cause it's homemade!


  • Hosted Moderators Posts: 10,661 ✭✭✭✭John Mason


    me likey :D


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 14,748 ✭✭✭✭Lovely Bloke


    Best Cooking Club in a long time, I think.

    Definitely going to make this one, can't wait.

    Might buy a load of MSG and whack it into the sauce for extra authenticity :D


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,305 ✭✭✭April O Neill


    Oh my good god, I am all over this recipe! The rice looks sooooo good.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,305 ✭✭✭April O Neill


    Daaaaaaamn.

    And it's healthy-ish cause it's homemade!

    FYP. :P:pac:


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,552 ✭✭✭Padraig Mor


    Oh my good god, I am all over this recipe! The rice looks sooooo good.

    In truth the rice has the least "authentic takeaway" taste of the recipe as it seems to be pretty much impossible to replicate without a high temperature wok station. It's still nice though! Maybe some MSG as mentioned above might help, perhaps groundnut oil too. The chicken and the sauce are pretty much spot on though; the chicken perhaps not as salty as you sometimes find in takeaways but that's no bad thing!


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,305 ✭✭✭April O Neill


    The chicken and the sauce are pretty much spot on though

    I always suspected Chinese S&S sauce was full of sugar, and that recipe be the proof. :)

    But, TBH, your chicken balls look way nicer, a lot less doughy than the ones you get from the Chinese usually.


  • Registered Users Posts: 437 ✭✭Wexy86


    Def trying this tomorrow for the traditional 'put a bit of effort into dinner on a Sunday dinner' - would pork work just the same? :-)


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  • Registered Users Posts: 9,552 ✭✭✭Padraig Mor


    Wexy86 wrote: »
    Def trying this tomorrow for the traditional 'put a bit of effort into dinner on a Sunday dinner' - would pork work just the same? :-)

    Can't see why it wouldn't. Don't think I've seen deep fried pork on a Chinese menu before though!


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Politics Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 12,110 CMod ✭✭✭✭Dizzyblonde


    It would work fine with a tender cut of pork such as loin or pork steak. I'd imagine that cuts like shoulder or collar that require longer, slower cooking would be very tough.


  • Registered Users Posts: 437 ✭✭Wexy86


    I went with the pork, cooked the chips in the oven to be healthy you know :-) I cannot move. Easy to make, will def be a regular in my house, thanks Padraig Mor!!


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,552 ✭✭✭Padraig Mor


    Wexy86 wrote: »
    I went with the pork, cooked the chips in the oven to be healthy you know :-) I cannot move. Easy to make, will def be a regular in my house, thanks Padraig Mor!!

    Looks tasty!


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,082 ✭✭✭gg2


    I'm guessing its ok to use a deep fat fryer for the chicken? As long as you fry in small batches?


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,552 ✭✭✭Padraig Mor


    I don't have one but it should be fine and make things a bit easier. Just fry until golden - should be in the same time region I'd imagine - 5 mins or so when fully heated. Note that it's quite a fine line between 'golden' and 'burnt'.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 5,080 ✭✭✭McChubbin


    Ermagerd, this looks simply deliscious! I love chicken balls with hoi sin sauce so I might try making these in the future! Thanks for sharing the recipe!
    nomnomnom.gif


  • Registered Users Posts: 131 ✭✭Casher


    Just made this for my dinner tonight. My god was it tasty, and pretty easy to make too.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 14,748 ✭✭✭✭Lovely Bloke


    Having this tonight, just about to start making.

    Adding some carrots, green pepper and onion to the sauce.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 14,748 ✭✭✭✭Lovely Bloke


    omg these are amazing!

    274815.jpg

    Halved the ingredients for everything, as was only serving 2 - found the batter slightly too thin, so added about 30g more flour.

    Perfect, reminded me of many nights falling into Charlies after being out in town.

    Great, fun recipe.

    Thanks a lot!


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  • Registered Users Posts: 9,552 ✭✭✭Padraig Mor


    omg these are amazing!



    Halved the ingredients for everything, as was only serving 2 - found the batter slightly too thin, so added about 30g more flour.

    Perfect, reminded me of many nights falling into Charlies after being out in town.

    Great, fun recipe.

    Thanks a lot!
    Glad you enjoyed!


  • Registered Users Posts: 18 The Green


    Fantastic recipe, went down very well with family this evening.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,681 ✭✭✭confusticated


    Made this yesterday, really tasty! Bad thing to make when you're only cooking for yourself though:o And I realised slightly too late that the bag in the press that I thought was cornflour was actually bread soda, so just had to use normal flour throughout. Will have to try again with cornflour, but maybe not on my own next time!


  • Moderators, Education Moderators Posts: 2,606 Mod ✭✭✭✭horgan_p


    Made this tonight , serious noms
    Agree with someone who posted above - you really need a good wok station for the rice.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,996 ✭✭✭two wheels good


    Daaaaaaamn.

    And it's healthy cause it's homemade!

    It looks very appetising but the sauce can't be considered healthy.
    More than 210g of sugar! plus whatever's in the ketchup

    Serving four hungry people say - that's > 50g sugar each. 2 ounces approx.

    These days I see more and more articles about the dangers of sugar. Consuming fat seems to be less of a health risk - despite what the food advert want to tell us.
    (That's not to say consuming 50g of fat would be healthy!)


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 30,657 Mod ✭✭✭✭Faith


    It looks very appetising but the sauce can't be considered healthy.
    More than 210g of sugar! plus whatever's in the ketchup

    Serving four hungry people say - that's > 50g sugar each. 2 ounces approx.

    These days I see more and more articles about the dangers of sugar. Consuming fat seems to be less of a health risk - despite what the food advert want to tell us.
    (That's not to say consuming 50g of fat would be healthy!)

    She was joking ;)


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,996 ✭✭✭two wheels good


    Faith wrote: »
    She was joking ;)

    Really? - missed it. I've passed my irony meter over the post again and didn't get a reading. New batteries needed maybe.


  • Registered Users Posts: 67 ✭✭CyrilFiggis


    Thanks for this recipe, I've made this a few times now. Definitely cheaper than a takeaway and very tasty.
    And the sauce freezes well too, so I made a big batch and can now have it when I like.

    2upehx3.jpg


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 30,657 Mod ✭✭✭✭Faith


    Does anyone have any suggestions for a sauce with this that's not sweet and sour?


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  • Registered Users Posts: 9,552 ✭✭✭Padraig Mor


    Faith wrote: »
    Does anyone have any suggestions for a sauce with this that's not sweet and sour?

    Can put up recipes for szechuan or satay sauce if you want - both have added sugar, but a lot less than the sweet and sour.


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