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Stir up dinner in minutes

Easy stir-fried chicken dish is great way to start the Chinese New Year

Garlic, sherry and hoisin sauce flavour chicken in this quick Chinese stir-fry. The start of the Chinese New Year this week inspired this quick and easy stir-fry dinner.

The cooking time for the chicken recipe is only five minutes. The secret to this quick-cooked dish is cutting the chicken and cucumbers into 1 ?2-inch pieces. The cucumber gives the dish an intriguing texture and flavour.

Hoisin sauce is a mixture of soybeans, garlic, chile peppers and spices. It can be found in the Asian section of the supermarket. A small amount of dry sherry is called for. You can buy small bottles or splits of sherry at most liquor stores.

Microwaveable brown rice completes this quick meal, which contains 612 calories per serving with 28 per cent of calories from fat.

Wine suggestion: This Asian chicken dish would go well with a slightly offdry riesling.

Helpful hints: Low-sodium soy sauce can be substituted for hoisin.

Minced garlic can be found in the produce section; six crushed garlic cloves can be substituted.

For easy stir-frying, place the prepared ingredients on a cutting board or plate in order of use. You won't have to look at the recipe once you start to cook.

Make sure your wok is very hot before adding the ingredients.

A quick way to slice scallions is to snip them with a scissors.


Marinate chicken.

While chicken marinates, prepare the other ingredients.

Make rice.

Stir-fry chicken.

Shopping list:

To buy: 1 small bottle hoisin sauce, 1 small bottle dry sherry, 3 pound ?4 chicken tenders, 1 package ground ginger, 1 medium cucumber, 1 small bunch scallions, 1 bottle sesame oil, 1 package microwaveable brown rice.

Staples: Minced garlic, sugar, cornstarch, salt, black peppercorns.


Serve over microwaveable brown rice that you have heated according to package directions and tossed with 2 teaspoons canola oil and salt and pepper to taste.

3 tsp sugar

1 ?4 cup sherry

3 tsp minced garlic

1 tsp ground ginger

3 ?4 lb chicken tenders cut into 1 ?2-inch cubes

2 Tbsp cornstarch

1 Tbsp hoisin sauce

1 Tbsp water

1 medium cucumber (peeled and cut into 1 ?2-inch cubes, about 2 cups)

1 Tbsp sesame oil

2 scallions, sliced

Mix sugar with sherry, garlic and ground ginger. Marinate the chicken in this mixture for 10 minutes while you prepare the other ingredients. Remove chicken to a plate, reserving marinade. Sprinkle cornstarch over chicken and toss. Set aside.

Mix hoisin sauce and water with marinade. Heat sesame oil in wok or skillet over medium-high. Add chicken, leaving any liquid on the plate. Stir-fry 3 minutes. Add cucumber and stir-fry 2 minutes. Remove to a bowl.

Add marinade to pan and cook 1 minute. Pour sauce over chicken and cucumbers; toss well. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with scallions.

Makes 2 servings.