Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Sesame Orange Chicken

I love the flavors of orange and chicken together, with a subtle heat that slowly builds, but won't burn your mouth off. I'm not a big fan of real hot things. I'd like to taste the other flavors, please. lol

A quick and easy dish you can serve over rice, quinoa, angelhair pasta, or by itself, you can play with the combination of veggies and amount of heat, to make it your own.  Stick leftovers in a container, and you have an awesome lunch at work the next day!

Arbol chilies are little red dehydrated chilies found in your Mexican spice section of the store. I'm lucky to live in within a large Hispanic community, so my local groceries have a huge section of  a Mexican brand spices, in cellophane bags and more often than not, good quality and MUCH cheaper than their American name brands in the regular spice isle of the store. The brand I find around me is Mi Constentina.  I bought 8 oz of sesame seeds for 2.49.  Better than 5 bucks for a little, dinky, useless amount, I find in the other isle. And I can't tell the difference in taste!
Reconstitute the chili in hot water until soft, about 30 minutes. Don't use the inner seeds and veins unless you like using the use of your taste buds for awhile. Oh, and as always, use gloves or wash your hands VERY well when messing with chilis.
If you prefer, you can sub the chili with a different kind of chili or a minced jalapeno. I just like the subtle, smoky heat these little Arbol chilies give. ahh.. I'm hungry, let's cook!
  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken, cubed
  • 1 small Arbol chili, reconstituted, seeded, deveined, and minced very fine
  • dash of Sesame oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, seeded, sliced lengthwise and then in half. More or less to suit your tastes.
  • 1/3 cup sliced green onions (scallions)
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
The Sauce:
  • 1 cup chicken stock or broth
  • 1/3 cup juice and zest from one orange
  • 1/3 cup apple cider
  • 3 1/2 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • few grates of fresh ginger (I keep mine in a freezer bag in the freezer, it keeps practically forever and saves $$)
  • the rest of the reconstituted and minced red chili, about 1/2 teaspoon
  • about one teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
  • few drops sesame oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch melted in about 2 Tablespoons cool tap water
sliced green onions and toasted sesame seeds for topping. As many as you like.

In large frying pan, heat about 2 Tablespoons veggie oil over fairly high heat.
Put chicken in one layer into the hot pan. Season with salt and pepper.
Flip pieces over when golden, reduce heat to medium-high and season that side with salt and pepper.
Add red bell pepper, grate a garlic clove down over the chicken, add couple drops sesame oil and green onions, pinch of the chilies, and stir for about one more minute and remove chicken from pan, unless chicken is still very raw. Depends on your chicken chunk sizes.

In same pan used to cook chicken, add the rest of the sauce ingredients, saving out a pinch of the orange zest for garnish, and stir until it begins to thicken.
Add chicken back to pan and stir until chicken is cooked through and sauce is thick. Maybe 5 minutes, not too long so the red bells don't get soggy. Taste for salt. I had to add just a pinch more before serving. Be careful judging heat level. It builds after a couple bites. ;)

Toast about a Tablespoon or two, of sesame seeds over medium heat, in a small frying pan,  moving pan about, until seeds begin to let off a little aroma. This is quite fast after the pan is hot, so be careful not to burn them.
Garnish with more green onions, orange zest, and toasted sesame seeds!


  1. This is so making my mouth water. Great combo of flavors!

  2. Thank you Carolina! I need to make this again soon. I only got a small serving and it was gone! LOL