Stirfried Chicken with Cucumbers

We don’t usually eat cooked cucumbers – I sort of consider them a summer vegetable best suited to salads and cold dishes, and my daughter would rather have them pickled. But this recipe is a wonderful way to use the last of the summer’s cucumbers, which are slowly disappearing from the farmers’ market.

I encourage you to seek out pastured/organic/free range chicken – you’ll be doing your taste buds, your body, and the environment a big favor! You can find a vendor near you by visiting Local Harvest.

ingredients:

  • 6 oz boneless, skinless chicken breast meat
  • 6 oz small cucumbers – Persian or Japanese varieties work best, but others will do in a pinch
  • 1 T oil
  • 2 scallions, cut into 1″ lengths
  • 1-2 small fresh red chilies, cut into 1″ lengths (you can cut in 1/2 and remove seeds first, if you prefer it less spicy)
  • 5 slices fresh ginger root, cut into thin strips
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

marinade:

  • 2 tsp tapioca flour or cornstarch
  • 1 large egg white

sauce:

  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar, brown or raw cane is best
  • 1/2 tsp rice wine or cider vinegar
  • 1 T Shaoxing cooking wine
  • 1/4 tsp ground white pepper, or to taste
  • 1 tsp sesame oil 

method:

  1. Rinse and pat the chicken dry, then cut into 1/8″ slices across the grain.
  2. Combine the chicken slices with the marinade ingredients and allow to rest for 15-30 m. Drain off any excess marinade before cooking.
  3. Rinse and pat the cucumbers dry, then cut off the ends, cut into 2″ lengths, and cut lengthwise into quarters.
  4. Combine the sauce ingredients in a bowl and set aside.
  5. Heat the oil in the wok over high heat until it shimmers, then explode the scallions, chilies, ginger and garlic just until fragrant.
  6. Add the drained chicken slices and cook just until the outside loses its pink color.
  7. Add the cucumber and stirfry 30 seconds.
  8. Add the sauce and stirfry until the chicken is cooked through, approximately 30-60 seconds longer.
  9. Adjust the seasoning and serve.

nutritional data:

A good source of lean protein, and fairly decent on the fat, sodium, and cholesterol scale. the recipe serves 4 as part of a larger meal, figures are given per serving.

  • Total calories 98, calories from fat 16
  • Total fat 2 g, saturated fat 0 g
  • Cholesterol 24 mg
  • Sodium 360 mg
  • Total carbs 8 g, dietary fiber 1 g, sugars 3 g
  • Protein 12 g
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