Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Bourbon Chicken

Now I am a TOTAL sucker for the bourbon chicken that they have at the mall.  I honestly don't know what all they put in there to make it taste so awesome, but believe me this comes pretty close to that awesomeness.  Next time I'll make a double recipe so that I can have leftovers!

This recipe is a two day process... day one prep, day two eating!  Its well worth the wait, but I do suggest that you make sure that when the chicken goes into the fridge overnight that you have it sealed tightly... I mean VERY tightly.  I put my chicken in a gallon zip lock freezer bag and then put that into a large tupperware container.  When I opened up the tupperware container I got a BIG woosh of the marinade smell.. .yes even though it was in a sealed ziplock freezer bag the smell still came through... but not through the tupperware and into the other foods in my fridge.  Why then did I not just put it all in a tupperware to begin with and skip the bag? Because when you put it into a bag you squeeze out any extra air in the bag and so the marinade has direct contact with every bit of surface that the meat has, in just a tupperware some bits of chicken wont get the same amount of marinade... which is not good.

Bourbon Chicken

Day one:
1 1/2 lbs dark meat (I use pre cut- frozen thigh meat)

1/2 cup Soy Sauce
1/4 cup Bourbon
1/2 cup + 1Tbsp Brown sugar (packed)
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp garlic powder
pinch red pepper flakes (pinch is about 1/2 of 1/8tsp)

Day two:
1 recipe Chicken and marinade
1 tsp cornstarch
2-3 tsp water
2-3 tsp peanut oil


  1. Cut up chicken into bite size pieces, remove fat, place into a gallon size ziplock bag.
  2. In a small bowl mix together all ingredients of the marinade making sure that all sugar has dissolved. Pour mixture into bag over chicken, mix well; remove all remaining air in the bag and seal.  
  3. Place zip lock bag into a tight sealing container, if the container does not seal tightly the bourbon will leave an odor in your fridge and change the taste of your food in the fridge (including your milk.. yuck..). Marinate over night.
  4. The next day, drain as much chicken from marinate as you can (save marinate for later use).  I took my chicken & marinate bag and poured it into a sieve over my Tupperware bowl that it had been in overnight.
  5. Heat up your wok (or skillet) on medium-high. While pan is heating up, in a small cup mix together the cornstarch and water, mix together.  If more water is needed to make a thin liquid add one tsp of water.
  6. Once pan is hot add the peanut oil to the pan, once that is hot then add the chicken. Cook the chicken until it is brown, this should take 7-10 minutes.  Remember to brown the meat all of the retained marinate cooks out of the chicken.  For best browning I use a wok, and leave an open ring in the bottom so that the liquid can come out of the chicken and drain into the bottom and then cook off, but I stir often as to make sure that the chicken cooks evenly and doesnt dry out as well.
  7. Once chicken is browned, pour in the reserved marinate and cook until it begins to boil.  Once the mixture comes to a boil then slowly add in the cornstarch/water mixture.  If cornstarch mixture has settled, give it a quick stir to release the cornstarch from the bottom of the cup and then pour it into the chicken mixture.
  8. Stir until the marinate starts to thicken. Serve with fried or steamed rice and vegetables if preferred. I served mine with steamed Jasmine rice and stir fried vegetables... it was great!

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