‘The Chinese do not draw any distinction between food and medicine.’ The Importance of Living, Lin Yutang
Ginger has many medicinal uses and is used in its many forms – fresh, dried, preserved, powdered, ground and candied – in hundreds of Chinese recipes. Way back when, in my parents’ Chinese Restaurant, there were jars and jars of sweet ginger on the storeroom shelves ready to prepare this sweetly fragrant and aromatic dish.
- Preparation times: 10 minutes
- Cooking times: 10 minutes
- Serves: 2
- 1 tbsp groundnut oil
- 300 g (10½oz) chicken breast fillet, cut into thin slices
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 1 onion, roughly chopped
- 1 carrot, cut into thin thumb-sized slices (slice the carrot diagonally)
- 8 slices of Chinese sweet pickled ginger
- 100 g (3½oz) drained tinned pineapple chunks
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tbsp granulated sugar
- 120 ml (½ cup) chicken stock
- 1 tbsp tomato ketchup
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 1 tbsp cornflour (cornstarch) mixed with 2 tbsp water
Heat the groundnut oil in a wok over a medium heat. Add the chicken and stir-fry for 2–3 minutes, then add the garlic and stir-fry for a further 15 seconds, followed by the onion and carrot. Stir-fry for a further minute before adding the sweet ginger and pineapple, stirring to combine well.
Add the vinegar, salt, sugar, stock and ketchup, bring to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 1 minute. Slowly add the cornflour mixture, stirring the sauce continuously. Remove from the heat, stir in the sesame oil and serve straightaway with a bowl of steaming Egg Fried Rice.
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