What To Know
- This recipe combines the classic sweet and tangy orange sauce with the aromatic and slightly bitter notes of lau leaves, resulting in a harmonious balance of flavors that will delight your taste buds.
- Add a teaspoon of toasted sesame oil to the orange sauce for a nutty flavor.
- Increase the amount of red pepper flakes or add a teaspoon of Sriracha sauce to the orange sauce for a spicy kick.
Embark on a culinary journey to create a tantalizing Orange Chicken dish infused with the unique flavors of lau leaves. This recipe combines the classic sweet and tangy orange sauce with the aromatic and slightly bitter notes of lau leaves, resulting in a harmonious balance of flavors that will delight your taste buds. With its crispy chicken, vibrant orange sauce, and the subtle complexity of lau, this dish promises an unforgettable dining experience.
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon minced ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup chopped lau leaves
1. Prepare the Chicken:
- In a medium bowl, combine the chicken pieces, cornstarch, flour, salt, and pepper. Toss to coat evenly.
2. Fry the Chicken:
- Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat.
- Once the oil is shimmering, add the coated chicken pieces and fry until golden brown and crispy, about 5-7 minutes.
- Remove the chicken from the skillet and set aside.
3. Make the Orange Sauce:
- In a small saucepan, combine the orange juice, soy sauce, brown sugar, rice vinegar, orange zest, garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes.
- Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
- Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5-7 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened.
4. Combine the Chicken and Sauce:
- Add the fried chicken back to the skillet with the orange sauce.
- Stir to coat the chicken evenly in the sauce.
5. Add the Lau Leaves:
- Sprinkle the chopped lau leaves over the chicken and sauce.
- Stir gently to combine.
- Serve the orange chicken immediately over steamed rice or noodles.
- Garnish with additional chopped lau leaves and orange zest for a vibrant presentation.
Tips for Making the Best Orange Chicken with Lau
- Choose Fresh Lau Leaves: Fresh lau leaves offer the best flavor and aroma. Look for vibrant green leaves that are free from blemishes or wilting.
- Adjust the Spice Level: If you prefer a milder dish, reduce the amount of red pepper flakes or omit them altogether.
- Use a Variety of Vegetables: Feel free to add other vegetables to your orange chicken, such as sliced bell peppers, broccoli florets, or snow peas.
- Serve with Your Favorite Sides: Orange chicken pairs well with steamed rice, noodles, or a simple green salad.
Variations on the Classic Orange Chicken Recipe
- Sesame Orange Chicken: Add a teaspoon of toasted sesame oil to the orange sauce for a nutty flavor.
- Spicy Orange Chicken: Increase the amount of red pepper flakes or add a teaspoon of Sriracha sauce to the orange sauce for a spicy kick.
- Honey Orange Chicken: Substitute honey for the brown sugar in the orange sauce for a sweeter and slightly tangy flavor.
- Pineapple Orange Chicken: Add some chopped pineapple chunks to the orange sauce for a tropical twist.
Health Benefits of Lau Leaves
- Antioxidant Activity: Lau leaves contain antioxidants that help protect cells from damage caused by free radicals.
- Anti-Inflammatory Properties: Lau leaves have anti-inflammatory properties that may help reduce inflammation in the body.
- Digestive Aid: Lau leaves are believed to aid digestion and relieve stomach discomfort.
- Immune System Support: Lau leaves contain vitamin C and other nutrients that support a healthy immune system.
The Secret Ingredient: Lau Leaves
Lau leaves, also known as bay leaves, are aromatic leaves commonly used in Southeast Asian cuisine. They possess a unique flavor and aroma that complements a variety of dishes, including curries, soups, and stir-fries. Lau leaves add a slightly bitter and earthy note to dishes, balancing out sweet and savory flavors.
The Bottom Line: A Culinary Delight
Immerse yourself in the delightful flavors of this Orange Chicken recipe made with lau leaves. The combination of crispy chicken, tangy orange sauce, and aromatic lau leaves creates a harmonious dish that will tantalize your taste buds. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a beginner in the kitchen, this recipe is easy to follow and promises a satisfying culinary experience. So, gather your ingredients, fire up the stove, and embark on a flavorful journey with this mouthwatering dish.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Can I use dried lau leaves instead of fresh ones?
A: Yes, you can use dried lau leaves. However, fresh lau leaves offer a more intense flavor and aroma. If using dried lau leaves, crush them slightly before adding them to the dish to release their flavor.
Q: How can I make my orange chicken spicier?
A: To make your orange chicken spicier, increase the amount of red pepper flakes or add a teaspoon of Sriracha sauce to the orange sauce. You can also add a pinch of cayenne pepper or chopped chili peppers for an extra kick.
Q: What are some good side dishes to serve with orange chicken?
A: Orange chicken pairs well with steamed rice, noodles, or a simple green salad. You can also serve it with roasted vegetables, such as broccoli, carrots, or bell peppers.