Recipe by Kzim4
From America's Test Kitchen. This is the closest I've tried to restaurant-style Orange Chicken. Prep time includes marinating time.
Top Review by Brandess
I made this recipe exactly as written with n o deviations. This was a very good recipe. My husband is very attached to traditional meals, so orange chicken is a bit out of his comfort zone, but he liked this very much. I think next time I will omit the white vinegar and replace with with Seasoned Rice Wine Vinegar.
Marinade and Sauce
- 1 1⁄2 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and cut in 1 1/2-inch pieces
- 3⁄4 cup low sodium chicken broth
- 3⁄4 cup orange juice, plus
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons grated orange peel, and
- 8 pieces orange peel (each about 2 inches long by 1/2 inch wide)
- 6 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
- 1⁄4 cup soy sauce
- 1⁄2 cup packed dark brown sugar (3 1/2 ounces)
- 3 medium garlic cloves, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
- 1 piece fresh ginger, grated (about 1 inch)
- 1⁄4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch, plus
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons water (cold)
- 8 small whole dried red chilies (optional)
Coating and Frying Medium
- 3 large egg whites
- 1 cup cornstarch
- 1⁄4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1⁄2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3 cups peanut oil
Directions See How It's Made
- FOR THE MARINADE AND SAUCE: Place chicken in 1-gallon zipper-lock bag; set aside.
- Combine chicken broth, orange juice, grated zest, vinegar, soy sauce, sugar, garlic, ginger, and cayenne in large saucepan (with at least 3-quart capacity); whisk until sugar is fully dissolved.
- Measure out 3/4 cup mixture and pour into bag with chicken; press out as much air as possible and seal bag, making sure that all pieces are coated with marinade.
- Refrigerate 30 to 60 minutes, but no longer.
- Bring remaining mixture in saucepan to boil over high heat.
- In small bowl, stir together cornstarch and cold water; whisk cornstarch mixture into sauce.
- Simmer sauce, stirring occasionally, until thick and translucent, about 1 minute.
- Off heat, stir in orange peel and chiles (sauce should measure 1 1/2 cups); set sauce aside.
- FOR THE COATING: Place egg whites in pie plate; using fork, beat until frothy. In second pie plate, whisk cornstarch, cayenne, and baking soda until combined.
- Drain chicken in colander or large mesh strainer; thoroughly pat chicken dry with paper towels.
- Place half of chicken pieces in egg whites and turn to coat; transfer pieces to cornstarch mixture and coat thoroughly.
- Place dredged chicken pieces on wire rack set over baking sheet; repeat with remaining chicken.
- TO FRY THE CHICKEN: Heat oil in 11- to 12-inch Dutch oven or straight-sided sauté pan with at least 3-quart capacity over high heat until oil registers 350 degrees on instant-read or deep-fry thermometer.
- Carefully place half of chicken in oil one piece at a time; fry until golden brown, about 5 minutes, turning each piece with tongs halfway through cooking.
- Transfer chicken to large plate lined with paper towels.
- Return oil to 350 degrees and repeat with remaining chicken.
- TO SERVE: Reheat sauce over medium heat until simmering, about 2 minutes.
- Add chicken and gently toss until evenly coated and heated through.
- Serve immediately.