I am really glad I made this. With just having finished a big Memorial Day BBQ and having so much leftover to eat, I was thinking that I did not need to make dinner. But then I thought about what I would learn from making this dish, Chinese Burmese Chili Chicken, and I decided to proceed. The recipe can be found on Cathy of My Culinary Mission’s blog for this Wok Wednesday challenge, or in the original book by Grace Young, Stir-Frying to the Sky’s Edge.
One thing about this dish that made me uncomfortable was the required Anaheim pepper. I don’t know anything about any pepper other than the Bell pepper. For all I knew, they are all hot like jalapenos. Boy was I wrong. At the market (which is a regional way of saying “supermarket”), sweet bell peppers were at the bottom of the chart of peppers and their hotness levels. Right above that were the Anaheim peppers. So that meant they would not be too hot. Yeah! But my market did not have Anaheim peppers. The closest pepper, according to the Produce Manager, was the Poblano. The Poblano was one step higher (hotter) on the chart than the Anaheim. But the manager assured me it was not going to be hot. OK, so that is the pepper I got. And at the market I went looking for chicken breasts, but since the breast tenderloins were on sale, I decided to use them.
So, back at my house, I cut and prepped all the ingredients in advance.
Then I started cooking some jasmine rice. Next I heated up the wok and put in some peanut oil. The onions went in first, followed by the chicken. I have to comment that the wok cooking gave each of these items a beautiful char finish. I felt like a real chef looking at the beautiful-ness of these two ingredients in my wok. (But I was so impressed that I forgot to get a picture : (
The rest of the ingredients went in as required. For spices, there was 1 tsp of cumin powder, 2 tsp of sweet paprika, salt, and pepper. Oh, and the fish sauce. I actually had this in my pantry for when I would eventually get around to making a dish with it. It was a little bit stinky. For the Poblano chili, I sliced it in half lengthwise, seeded it, and then added only half to the dish. And at the end of the recipe, you are supposed to put in 1/2 tsp of chili powder. Still being a little cautious, I only used 1/4 a tsp.
You know, I could have added the other 1/4 tsp and the dish would still have been delicious. I was really impressed with how much flavor it had. I do wonder what the Anaheim pepper would have brought to the dish. This was very good, and I felt good about having made it. I would definitely make this again.
In two weeks we will be making Chinese Trinidadian Stir-Fry Shrimp with Rum. Sounds delicious. Can’t wait! Check back soon!