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Sichuan (Szechuan) Wok-fried Chicken Recipe http://rasamalaysia.com/chinese-recipe-szechuan-wok-fried/
December 11th, 2006 46 Comments

Sichuan (Szechuan) Wok-fried Chicken Recipe

Szechuan Wok-fried Chicken

(Chinese recipes, prepare authentic Chinese food now!)

My love affair with Szechuan food began about 2 years ago when I first visited China. Before my trip to China, the notion of trying out Szechuan food was never high on my “what-to-eat” list. Then, when I wanted to have Chinese food, I would go for Dim Sum, Malaysian Chinese food, or typical Cantonese-style BBQ or seafood meals.

It all changed when I went to China and had my first real Szechuan meal in a popular restaurant called Xiao Lu Lu (小鹭鹭) in Shanghai. I fell under the spell of this exquisitely flavorful cuisine immediately; it was indeed love at first bite. I was marveled by the depth and the spice structure of the cooking and wished only that I’d discovered Szechuan cuisine earlier. In a way, my trip to China opened up a whole new chapter in my culinary world and gave me access to ingredients and flavors that I’ve never thought possible. In my opinion (without sounding too cliché), Szechuan food is the new Thai, but more complex and more explosive in flavor…

Szechuan Pepper

The secret ingredient of Szechuan food is Szechuan pepper (花椒)–the medium that gives Szechuan food the staple tingly numbing effect (麻). Szechuan pepper exudes rich aroma and exotic scent to dishes and together with dried chili pepper, they give the Ma La (麻辣) flavor that is signature to Sichuan food. And believe me when I say this, once you’ve tried Ma La (麻辣), there is no turning back.

One of the Szechuan dishes that I absolutely love is Szechuan wok-fried chicken and I made it this past weekend. This chili-laden dish was alluringly tongue-numbing, explosively fiery, and pleasantly addictive. However, it’s just not the easiest dish to make at home (my smoke alarm went off while I was trying to wok hei (鑊氣) this dish!), but the result and experience were certainly satisfying.

So, do you like Ma La (麻辣) Szechuan food?

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46 comments... read them below or add one

  1. Shiny Blue Black says:

    Try the same thing with eggplants. it is UNBELIEVABLY good

  2. Rasa Malaysia says:

    Shiny Blue Black – I have never tried eggplants with this…thanks for your reco. :)

  3. simcooks says:

    Hot hot hot! This is too spicy for me!

  4. Tummythoz says:

    Frens & I call those peppercorns ‘lil bombs’. Personally I dislike d tongue/mouth numbing feeling but was told that one can get real ‘high’ on them!

  5. Chubbypanda says:

    Sichuan food rocks! You know we pandas like it spicy.

    - Chubbypanda

  6. Passionate Eater says:

    This dish is on the fiery side! I love the idea though of the commenters to add eggplant. I almost thought the chicken was fried tofu at first. I might make this for my vegetarian friends using tofu instead. Would you agree? (I need to ask the cooking pro first.) It might be too hot, because the tofu would absorb all of the heat from the chilies.

  7. syen says:

    hi rasa malaysia, nice blog u have here…and i love ur neat, clean template! do u mind sharing where u got it?? thanks much!

  8. Ho Jiak says:

    so many herbs and spicies, should be hard to prepare!

  9. Rasa Malaysia says:

    Simcooks – I don’t blame you…some people don’t like the Ma La flavor.

    Tummythoz – I am addicted to them. I loooove the numbing tingly sensation.

    Chubbypanda – Yep. I love spicy food. Period.

    PE – The chicken does look like tofu on the picture! I think it’s a great idea to try with tofu…as for the tofu absorbing the heat, I think you should be fine if you coat the tofu with batter and then deep fry them.

    Syren – Thanks for visiting Rasa Malaysia and thanks for your kind comment. I got the template here, but changed the code a little bit. Here is the URL for the template: http://thrbrtemplates.blogspot.com/

    Ho Jiak – It wasn’t super hard, but not that easy either. You should try it out since it’s impossible to get any Szechuan food in Penang.

  10. HL says:

    I love Szechuan hot and sour soup, and 干煸四季豆!

  11. tigerfish says:

    I love Szechuan hot and sour soup, and 干煸四季豆!

  12. Stephanie says:

    How I wish I’d had your guide when I visited Penang… this is the food I dream of!

  13. eatdrinknbmerry says:

    I love sichuan peppers (hua jiao). My friends and I recently had Sichuan-style hot pot. It was punishing. Are you able to find hua jiao at 99 Ranch? I’ve been wanting to take my chinese beef noodle soup (nu ro mian() to another level.

  14. Rasa Malaysia says:

    Tigerfish – 干煸四季豆 is very delightful, I like it too, but I am not a big fan of hot and sour soup…probably because I have too many bad ones in the US. ;)

    Stephanie – thanks. Next time, pring out my guide before you go to Penang. :P

    Eatdrinknbmerry – yes, you can get the hua jiao in 99 Ranch. They are available. :)

  15. Sam says:

    Hi Bee
    I am so excited about finding your blog. I love Malaysain food and used to eat it a lot in London, but in San Francisco there is none. SO I need to learn to cook it, you can be sure I am going to be cheking out your site when I have some spare time after Menu for Hope.

    thanks for your support

    sam,

  16. eatdrinknbmerry says:

    I love 干煸四季豆!

  17. Rasa Malaysia says:

    Hey Sam,

    Thanks for your kind words and a very warm welcome!

    There are quite a few Malaysian restaurants in the bay Area. In San Francisco, I like Singapore and Malaysia Restaurant in Clement. It’s run by a family who came from Penang. Very good and homey. In San Francisco Chinatown, there is a Penang Village (I think) and in Daly City, there is Banana Island. In the valley, there are Banana Leaf, Layang Layang, and a few more. :)

    And yes, cooking at home will do too. ;)

    Eatdrinknmerry – it’s hard not to like 干煸四季豆! Simple and delicious. :)

  18. tigerfish says:

    Oh, Penang Village is @ Coleman Avenue, Santa Clara.

    I’ve eaten those real Szechuan 干煸四季豆 where the long beans are “wrinkled” and crisp. Do you know how they make it?

  19. jess says:

    Looks delicious! May I know how you made the batter for the chicken? Thanks.

  20. Rasa Malaysia says:

    Jess, I used store-bought batter mix, coat the chicken with the batter, deep fry, voila. ;)

  21. 순디자인 says:

    잘 보고 갑니다.

  22. Anonymous says:

    hi there, just like to know, what is the best substitute for chinese cooking wine?

  23. Rasa Malaysia says:

    Anonymous – you can use sherry or sake (the one for cooking).

  24. Anonymous says:

    hi, what batter do we use?

  25. Rasa Malaysia says:

    You can use all purpose flour for your batter or buy store-bought fried chicken batter.

  26. Anonymous says:

    COuld you tell me where I can Szechwan peppercorns in Malaysia? Can I find it in any grocery shop (Tesco, Giant etc?) int he spice section. I’ve looked but couldn’t find it!!

  27. Anonymous says:

    Er.. this is a really unique dish.. but can anyone plse share how to do the batter? Is plain flour or corn flour ok? Do you need to dip in egg first, then in the flour or what? Different people have different ways of doing this.

    thanks alot!

  28. Anonymous says:

    Hi, Rasa Malaysia,

    What is I can’t add rice wine (alcohol) in the recipe? Is there anything to substitute the rice wine with non-alcohol ingredient?

    serena.

  29. Tara says:

    FINALLY! I have been searching for a good Asian food blog forEVER! I stumbled upon your blog and I’m so glad I did. Not only is it filled with great Asian food, but the photography and food plating is just beautiful. I really love your blog (at first sight) and plan to visit often. Expect me to make some of your dishes here and there because I LOVE Asian food! I’ll be sure to let you know when I do.

  30. P says:

    I think this will be todays dinner :)

  31. yin mei says:

    This Szechuan Wok-fried Chicken sounds hot. Im gonna try making this using your Szechuan Wok-fried Chicken recipe when winter comes. ;)

  32. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the recipe. I had this La Ji Jie when I was on vacation in China somewhere in Hangzhou we went to a Sichuan restaurant. Wow…this is the hottest dish I have ever had in my life. Will try to make this dish with your recipe for my bf it’s his favorite dish.

    Pucca

  33. royalbuff says:

    I love chillies! This looks like a recipe to try ;)

  34. Reverto says:

    Hello,

    I have some questions about this recipe:

    1) I’m trying to find a good Chinese fried chicken batter recipe. I’m guessing that using egg and milk, common in U.S. Southern fried chicken, isn’t authentic, correct?

    Would you make any changes to this Chinese fried chicken batter recipe?

    1/2 cup all-purpose flour
    1 tsp baking powder
    2 pinches baking soda
    4 tbsp cornstarch

    Combine flour with baking powder, baking soda, cornstarch, 1/2 tsp salt and 1 cup cold water. Whip with wire whisk to mix well.

    2) Is it necessary to dip the chicken in flour before dipping it in batter? I’ve found some recipes that say one thing, and others never mention dipping in flour.

    3) For this part: “Add in the chicken cubes and seasoning and do a final quick stir.” By “seasonings” did you mean the soy sauce and cooking wine?

    Thanks in advance.

  35. Aleth says:

    Any Sichuan huoguo soup recipes? I love huoguo!

  36. Tom says:

    I found this recipe specifically for the Sichuan peppercorns – more recipes please!

  37. Emil says:

    Ni hao,

    I was in China (Beijing) during December visiting my parents-in-law, who are there on contract basis.

    My father-in-law wanted to treat us and took us to a Sichuan restaurant, were I ate sichuan pepper for the first time, it was realy hot! I enjoyed it so much, that I went hunting for sichuan pepper in South Africa and found a bottle over the weekend. Now I only need a recipe (Like the one at the restaurant)!

    The dish consisted of lots of chillies, mushrooms, prawns, bean curd, sichuan pepper, ginger and a whole lot that I can not remember – can anyone help with a similar recipe?

  38. Simon says:

    Another technique that i was taught which i use is to actually toast the sichuan pepper corns in the wok first. This releases much more of the aromas, the sichuan chicken version i used to eat in Sydney’s chinatown at authentic places were also slightly more saucy.

    My former father in law used to make a light sauce of Chicken stock, rice wine, red chilies, sichuan pepper corns.

    I will try this recipe.

  39. Gary C. says:

    Hi Bee :o) This recpe was super, much nicer than the gloopy versions I’ve had in some restaurants. My daughter gave it two big thumbs up!

  40. Hi,

    I was just wondering where the soy and shaoxing wine is used, is this a dipping sauce, or is it in the recipe?? I wanted to cook this dish tonight, it looks delicious.

  41. susan says:

    Your coriander, I think you meant cilantro as coriander is the seed from cilantro.

  42. #1 Tastee Corner says:

    I just love that first picture and that napkin! I’m looking forward to trying this: I keep hearing about this cashew cream concept and while I’m a huge fan of dairy I’d certainly like to explore the non-dairy options.

  43. Odysseym says:

    Mine looked nothing like the picture but tasted delicious….I suspect the Soy Sauce used is meant to be LIGHT Soy Sauce…is this correct?

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