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Homemade Panda Express orange chicken

Homemade Panda Express orange chicken
Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times

In a small apartment in East Hollywood, the sound of rush-hour traffic filters through the warm evening air. A group of tired, hungry friends voices a serious craving — not for some seasonal restaurant cuisine or even tacos, but for ... Read more

Total time: 55 minutes | Makes 4 to 8 servings

Orange chicken sauce

  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch
  • 1/2 cup orange juice, freshly squeezed if possible
  • 1/2 teaspoon orange zest
  • 2 tablespoons orange marmalade
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger, grated
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons of sambal chile sauce
  • 2 tablespoons mirin
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Step 1In a small bowl, stir together the water and corn starch to make a slurry. Set aside.

Step 2In a small saucepan, combine the orange juice, zest and marmalade along with the soy sauce, garlic, ginger, chile sauce, mirin, rice wine vinegar, white wine vinegar, honey, pepper and salt. Heat over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally until the mixture comes to a simmer, 2 to 3 minutes.

Step 3Whisk in the corn starch slurry and continue to cook until the sauce comes back to a simmer, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside. This makes about 1 cup sauce.

Fried chicken

  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast, diced
  • 1 1/2 cups corn starch
  • Vegetable oil, for frying

Step 1Pour the corn starch into a shallow baking dish or bowl. Toss the chicken pieces in with the corn starch to coat, then set aside for a few minutes. Toss the chicken with the corn starch a second time to coat again. Set aside.

Step 2Add enough oil to a large heavy pot so the oil comes about halfway up the sides. Heat the oil until a thermometer inserted reaches 350 degrees.

Step 3Fry the chicken pieces, a handful at a time, until the chicken is firm and the fried coating is a pale golden color. Drain on a cooling rack lined with paper towels.

Orange chicken

  • Fried chicken
  • Orange chicken sauce

Step 1Heat a wok over high heat until hot. Add the orange chicken sauce and cook until the sauce starts to bubble, about 1 minute.

Step 2Add the chicken to the pan and stir until each piece is well coated with the sauce, about 1 to 2 minutes. Serve immediately.


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