When my mother came up with the name of her first cookbook the term "All-American" only seemed fit. After all, she was 1st generation Chinese married to an American, Irish, Norwegian man living in Nebraska where traditional Chinese ingredients were not made readily available. It isn't until now that I truly understand the meaning of the All-American... (read more)

Archive for the ‘Poultry’ Category




Lemon Sesame Chicken

Who doesn’t love lemon or sesame chicken? We combined the two for a tasty dish. Not intended to have a ton of sauce all over the chicken but rather a lightly coated sweet and sour lemon sauce with sesame seeds.

1 pound boneless and skinless chicken breasts
3 cups canola or vegetable oil for deep-frying
2 tablespoons sesame seed

1/3 cup flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon salt

½ cup water
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about ½ large size lemon)
4 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon soy sauce (Kikkoman brand)

Cut chicken breasts into1 inch cubes. In a bowl, mix the batter ingredients together until smooth. Add chicken cubes to batter, coating each piece well and set aside. In a small bowl, mix the sauce ingredients together until the sugar dissolves.

To Cook:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat 3 cups oil in a wok or a deep fryer. When the oil is hot, drop one piece of chicken at a time into wok. Deep-fry approx. 1/3 of chicken cubes at one time until light brown. Transfer to cookie sheet and keep hot in oven.  After frying all the chicken pieces, keep them hot in the oven for up to 15 minutes or until crisp.

Use a wok or a medium size pot over medium heat. Add the sauce, cook and constantly stir until the sauce has thickened and becomes clear. Remove the crisp chicken cubes from oven and add to sauce. Quickly stir and sprinkle 2 tablespoons of sesame seeds over chicken. Mix well. Serve hot.

Makes 4 servings
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes




Kung Pao Chicken

Ever wonder what “Kung Pao” is exactly? Besides being one of the most popular dishes in a Chinese restaurant, it’s a classic Szechuan dish named for a 19th century governor of the Sichuan province in China. So there’s the history lesson for the day but all you really need to know is, Caution! Do not to eat the dried red peppers as they are extremely hot. And if you have ever eaten one by mistake, you know exactly what we mean 🙂

1 pound boneless and skinless chicken breasts
1 small green bell pepper
½ small yellow onion
1 tablespoon canola or vegetable oil (for cooking in a non-stick wok or a fry pan)
4 dried red chili peppers
½ cup dry roasted peanuts
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce*
1 tablespoon white vinegar

3 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons soy sauce (Kikkoman brand)
1 tablespoon rice wine or cooking sherry wine
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon pure sesame oil

Cut chicken breasts into 1 inch cubes. Crush, peel and finely chop the garlic. In a bowl, combine chicken with the marinade ingredients. Mix together thoroughly and set aside. Wash, discard stem and seeds from green pepper and cut into 1 inch squares. Chop onion into ½ inch squares.

To Cook:
Heat oil in a non-stick wok or a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Break each of the dried chili peppers in half and add to wok. Cook the peppers for 1 to 2 minutes until darkened. Add chicken cubes and stir-fry for 2 to 3 minutes until the chicken is nearly cooked through. Add green peppers, onions, dry roasted peanuts, hoisin sauce and white vinegar. Stir-fry for another 1 to 2 more minutes. Serve hot.

Makes 4 servings
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 7 minutes

*Hoisin sauce is a sweet brown sauce made from soybeans. Sold in jars or bottles at the Asian section of most supermarkets.  After opening, it can be stored for several months in the refrigerator.

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