Inspired by my subscription to Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food Magazine, I made a list of recipes to try that I found on her website. First up — Lighter Sesame Chicken.
|Original Recipe||Eganita Adjustment|
|3/4 cup brown rice||One packet of Uncle Ben’s “Boil In Bag” Brown Rice. This stuff is more expensive, but it’s so quick and easy to make!|
|3 tablespoons honey||3 tablespoons honey|
|2 tablespoons sesame seeds||None|
|2 tablespoons soy sauce||2 tablespoons soy sauce|
|1 garlic clove, finely chopped or crushed with a garlic press||1 garlic clove, pressed with my garlic press!|
|2 large egg whites||2 large egg whites|
|1/4 cup cornstarch||1/4 cup cornstarch|
|1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 2-inch chunks||About that much chicken. Next time I’d cut into smaller chunks for easier cooking though.|
|Coarse salt and ground pepper||Coarse salt and ground pepper (just a sprinkle of both)|
|2 tablespoons vegetable oil, such as safflower||Used fat free olive oil spray instead|
|4 scallions, thinly sliced||4 green onions (I prefer to call them that!!), thinly sliced|
|1 1/2 pounds broccoli, cut into large florets, stems peeled and thinly sliced||One package of frozen “steam in bag” broccoli. Again, this is more expensive than standard microwave broccoli, but the steam in bag variety has a nice crunch to it!|
|Pineapples – I decided to add maybe ¼ of a large can to the dish|
|Original Recipe||Eganita Adjustment|
|1) Place a steamer basket in a large saucepan, and fill with 1 inch water; set aside for broccoli. Cook rice according to package instructions.||1) I used microwave broccoli instead and just prepared it when I was ready to serve.|
|2) Meanwhile, make sauce: In a small bowl, combine honey, sesame seeds, soy sauce, and garlic; set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together egg whites and cornstarch. Add chicken; season with salt and pepper, and toss to coat.||2) Make sauce: In a small bowl, combine honey, sesame seeds, soy sauce, and garlic; set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together egg whites and cornstarch. Add chicken; season with salt and pepper, and toss to coat. NOTE: I would make double the sauce next time.|
|3) In a large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high. Add half the chicken; cook, turning occasionally, until golden and opaque throughout, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a plate; repeat with remaining tablespoon oil and chicken. Return all the chicken to skillet; add reserved sauce and scallions, and toss to coat.||3) Coat a large nonstick skillet pan with fat free olive oil spray (make sure to coat generously or the chicken will stick. I learned this from experience!). Add half the chicken; cook, turning occasionally, until golden and opaque throughout, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a plate; repeat with remaining tablespoon oil and chicken. Return all the chicken to skillet; add reserved sauce and scallions, and toss to coat. At this point, I added in the pineapple. I didn’t want it to cook for too long.|
|4) Meanwhile, place saucepan with steamer basket over high heat; bring water to a boil. Add broccoli, and cook until crisp-tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Serve sesame chicken with broccoli and rice.||4) Serve sesame chicken with broccoli and rice.|
Source: Lighter Sesame Chicken
I actually agree with a bunch of the reviewers; the dish was quite bland. I liked the texture of the chicken (the “healthy breading” idea was pretty cool), but the flavor was underwhelming for me. I was VERY glad that I decided to add pineapples; I added them into the pan at the last second, and they picked up some nice flavor.
I think this was a great base recipe, but I would consider including additional elements next time. Some initial ideas:
- Pineapples (I added some this time and would do that again next time)
- Extra sauce
- Mandrin oranges (or at least some orange zest)
- Additional veggies (red peppers?)
. The original recipe called for sesame seeds. Perhaps that would help in the flavor department as well, but I didn’t feel like purchasing an additional (fairly expensive) ingredient that I felt would not really add to the dish.
In the end, I am giving the Eganita Kitchen Approved stamp. Lighter Sesame Chicken, you have the pineapples to thank for that one!
Final product (from my desk at work. The picture was rushed because the guy that sits across from me can see whatever weird things I do in my cube!):