An unfortunate incident with a recent batch of Meyer Lemon Marmalade was the inspiration for this recipe.
When you are living in a house that is on the market, the last thing you should do is start making marmalade. I’ll guarantee you that the phone will ring and someone will want to tour the house. When this happens, turn off the stove, pour the marmalade in a big jar, get in the car and drive off. Park around the corner until you see them leave, then get back to the house asap. Pour the marmalade back into the pot and start cooking it over again. If you don’t cook it over again, it will be runny and not set completely. This I know for a fact.
But, when faced with a jar of liquidy marmalade and a new wok, opportunity knocks. I decided to use the liquid part of the marmalade to make lemon chicken stir fry. This delicious dish is why I see the marmalade incident as a happy accident. This was so easy to make and so tasty.
If you have a good wok, definitely use it to make this dish. If not, a good cast iron pan or skillet will work.
If you don’t have homemade Meyer lemon marmalade, buy a jar at the store and use that. If you can’t find lemon marmalade, use orange and call this sticky orange chicken stir fry. I happen to love Meyer lemons because they bridge the gap between sour lemon and sweet orange. The marmalade gives you that sweet, tart, sticky sauce.
- ¼ cup lemon or orange marmalade
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, (about 12-14 ounces), cut into 1 inch cubes
- 2 tablespoons peanut oil, divided
- 2 large cloves garlic, finely minced
- 1 teaspoon finely minced fresh ginger (more if you like ginger)
- ½ medium sweet white onion, cut into 1" dice
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon sweet Thai chili sauce (if you like a little heat)
- 1 scallion, sliced, as garnish
- 3 cups hot cooked steamed white rice
- Heat the marmalade on the stove over low heat until melted. Add a little water if it doesn't thin out when heated. Pour the marmalade through a fine mesh strainer reserving the liquid. You can use the rind portion as garnish or just discard it. Set the marmalade "liquid" aside.
- Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces. Toss them in a bowl with 1 tablespoon of the peanut oil and set aside.
- Heat your wok or skillet to medium high heat. Pour the remaining 2 tablespoons of peanut oil into the hot wok. Add the garlic and minced ginger and stir just until they become fragrant. Be careful not to burn them. Add the onion and cook with the garlic and ginger for an additional minute or two until the onion softens. Add the chicken and stir until it is cooked through and slightly browned. Make sure it is cooked through but not too long or it will dry out. Pour the soy sauce around the edge of the pan followed by the marmalade and sweet chili sauce. Stir about a minute, until the sauce is combined and slightly thickened. Be careful not to allow it to burn. Stir in the sugar. Taste the sauce and sprinkle the salt in if you like it saltier.
- Serve hot over steamed white rice and garnish with scallions.
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