Friday, January 1, 2016

Hoisin Explosion Chicken

Starting this month, January 2016, I will be co-hosting together with Emily of Emily's Cooking Foray, for our new monthly baking/cooking event, "Cookbook Countdown". Both of us have way too many cookbooks that we've collected over the years and some of the books have not been used at all, not even once. So, both Emily and I thought that it would be good to start using those books. That's where "Cookbook Countdown" comes in. Everyone is welcome to join us! We will each select a cookbook to cook or bake from each month. Just select any cookbook from your cookbook collection and join us. You may cook any recipes and as many recipes as you want from your selected book of the month. This is a fabulous way of using your cookbooks at least once! For more information, please click here. Do join us! 

To kick-start my first "Cookbook Coutdown", my selected book for this month is 
"Stir-Frying To The Sky's Edge" by Grace Young.


Winner of 2011 James Beard Foundation Award for International Cooking.
Grace Young shares more than 100 classic stir-fry recipes of Sichuan, Hunan, Shanghai, Beijing, Fujian, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia as well as other countries around the world.

I've made Hoisin Explosion Chicken, one of the dozens that I have bookmarked to try!

A simple stir-fry chicken dish, which does not take long to prepare. The method of preparing the chicken is rather new to me. Sliced chicken breasts pieces are first marinated in egg white, cornstarch, rice wine and salt for 30 minutes, then they are boiled for a brief 1 minute in boiling water. Drain the chicken to remove excess water and the pieces are then stir-fry with the rest of the ingredients following the recipe instructions below. By pre-cooking the marinated chicken briefly in the boiling water, makes the chicken breast pieces tender and moist. This is a nice dish to prepare as part of a meal at dinner time, to eat with rice, along with perhaps a vegetable dish and soup. 

Hoisin Explosion Chicken
(adapted from "Stir-Frying To The Sky's Edge", Grace Young)
12 ounces boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1/4-inch-thick bite-sized slices
1 tablespoon egg white, lightly beaten
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1-1/2 teaspoons plus 1 tablespoon Shao Hsing rice wine or dry sherry
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
1 teaspoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons peanut or vegetable oil
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 medium green bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch-wide strips (about 1-1/2 cups)
One 8-ounce can sliced bamboo shoots, rinsed and drained (omitted)

  1. In a medium bowl, combine the chicken, egg white, cornstarch, 1-1/2 teaspoons of the rice wine, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt, and 1-1/2 teaspoons of cold water. Stir until the cornstarch is totally dissolved and no clumps are visible. Put the chicken uncovered in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. In a small bowl combine the hoisin sauce, soy sauce, and the remaining 1 tablespoon rice wine.
  2. In a 2-quart saucepan bring 1 quart water to a boil over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil to the boiling water. Reduce the heat to low. When the water is barely simmering, carefully add the chicken, gently stirring it so that the pieces do not clump together. Cook 1 minute or until the chicken just turns opaque but is not cooked through. Carefully drain the chicken in a colander, shaking the colander to remove excess water.
  3. Heat a 14-inch flat-bottomed wok or 12-inch skillet over high heat until a bead of water vaporizes within 1 to 2 seconds of contact. Swirl in the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, add the ginger, garlic, and red pepper flakes, then, using a metal spatula, stir-fry 10 seconds or until the aromatics are fragrant. Add the bell peppers, sprinkle on the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, and stir-fry 30 seconds or until the peppers are bright green. Add the chicken and the bamboo shoots. Swirl the hoisin sauce mixture into the wok, and stir-fry 1 to 2 minutes or until the chicken is just cooked through.

"I'm linking this post with Cookbook Countdown hosted by 


Happy New Year everyone!! 
Wish you a healthy and blessed 2016!!


  1. Yeahh, both of us choose chicken dishes!

  2. I love delicious and quick stirfry like this..thanks for sharing, Joyce.
    Happy New Year!

  3. This looks delicious and is a must try, Joyce! We're going to a Chinese restaurant for dinner this evening and I hope something similar is offered there. Here's wishing you the best in the coming year, Happy New Year!

  4. I'm still trying to figure out how I'm going to join you and your "pals: for this event, Joyce. You know it's right up my alley. So many cookbooks I haven't shared OR cooked from, lol...

    The chicken explodes with goodness! I like the method. Sort of a brining solution.

    Thanks for sharing, Joyce. Happy New Year to you too!!! It's going to be a blast!!!

  5. Hi Joyce! The name itself sounds exciting "explosion" hah..hah... Boiling the chicken briefly sounds like a healthier alternative to the usual blanching in hot oil. I've got to try this method one day.

  6. Hi Joyce , Wishing you & your family a Happy & Prosperuous New Year ! Love this yummy & easy dish for weekdays . Thanks for the recipe , truly appreciate it ! Nowadays I only go for easy recipes especially for busy week days when I have no time to really 'masak' ! LOL

  7. happy new year!!! yummm bookmarked the recipe, have a bottle of hoisin sitting in the fridge waiting for an inspiration thanks for the recipe:)

  8. Happy New Year Joyce! What an exciting new project you've started with Emily. I have this book and this recipe is one of many that I've flagged but not yet made. It looks fantastic. I may be joining you this month....

  9. I had never tried this method before, but you're right! The chicken was so moist and delicious. It dissolved in your mouth. Thank you so much. I never would have thought of pre-cooking the chicken in boiling water!

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  10. Joyce, this looks like something my mum would make minus boiling the chicken in water before frying. I will tell her about this. It would definitely shorten the cooking time and also, makes the dish taste alot better. Yums!!