When I think of Chili chicken... deep fried comes to mind. Often they are battered and fried to a pretty tasty golden perfection. While it may be rather delicious, it's not necessarily something you want to be throwing in to the weekly rotation. Plus, the hassle of battering and frying at home is of no real interest to me!
This version is lighter and much easier and comes together in about half an hour. The addition of cashews is, like most things, optional. However, I love them in stir fries as they add a really nice texture, not to mention flavour. I've chosen to lightly roast them here because, well, it tastes even better and I think they hold their crunch a little longer once they've been "sauced". This recipe would also work with tofu if you're feeling a vegetarian version.
I've sprinkled the finished dish with some Korean Chili flakes - which are so amazingly good. They have less heat then your standard ones, but more flavour. You can add them to any dish.... including salads! They add such a nice punch - and just because they are Korean, don't limit them to Asian dishes. They're great in so many recipes! You can find them online here. Or likely in many asian supermarkets or spice shops.
2 chicken breasts, cubed
1 bunch green onions, sliced
1 small head of broccoli, cut into florets
3-4 sticks of celery, sliced
2 small heads bok choy
2 cloves garlic
1/3 cup cashews, gently roasted in a dry pan
oil of choice for frying
dash of soy sauce
1/3 cup thai sweet chili sauce
1 tbs soy sauce
1-2 tbs rice wine vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
1-2 tsp cornstarch (optional)
Mix all ingredients for the sauce and set aside. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired. Heat oil in a wok and fry chicken until almost cooked through. Place the chicken in a bowl. Add more oil to the pan if necessary and add garlic, broccoli and celery, stir fry for a few minutes with a bit of the sauce. Add chicken and the rest of the sauce and stir to combine. Add cornstarch if using by pre-mixing it with a few drops of water, then adding it to the wok. This will thicken the sauce, which I like. But of course, you can omit this. Stir in the cashews. Serve over rice. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and chili flakes of choice (try Korean!).