After watching The Search for General Tso’s on Monday, I was inspired to make my own, semi-healthier, version.
I began by researching recipes. Most of them had a recipe for a very thick, sugar-heavy sauce. This was the complete opposite of what I wanted. My goal was to find a lighter sauce and also figure out how to sweeten the sauce without using flat out sugar.
Ultimately, I found what I was looking for: apricot jam. It had just enough sugar to give the sauce a sweet taste, but was not too overwhelming.
This is the recipe I used:
1/4 cup of all-purpose flour
3 large egg whites
1/2 cup of Panko bread crumbs (but you can use any bread crumbs you have)
1 1/2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 2/3 cups of water
1/4 cup of soy sauce
1/4 cup of apricot jam
2 tablespoons of cornstarch
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
small pinch of red pepper flakes
I began by preheating the oven to 475 degrees. I took a pan and lined it with aluminum foil and sprayed it with vegetable oil (I need to look for a better alternative in the future). Then I cut the chicken into 1 inch pieces. I poured out the flour, egg whites, and Panko breading into three separate bowls. Then I dipped the chicken in the flour, then egg whites, then Panko. Then I put the pieces of chicken on the tray and sprayed it with my cooking spray. I let the chicken cook for roughly 14 minutes, and flipped them over halfway through.
As the chicken was cooking, I combined the water, soy sauce, apricot jam, and cornstarch together in a large bowl. Then I poured the mixture into a saucepan. I brought it to a simmer and then let it sit until it began to thicken. Once it was thick enough, I turned the heat off and covered it with a lid.
Once the chicken was done, I took the pan out of the oven and placed the chicken into the sauce. I coated the chicken and then it was time to eat! I had already made some rice and was ready to see how this dish came out. The smell of the sauce was already amazing, so I had a feeling this one was going to be good!
Well it turns out it was good, really good. Definitely something I would make again and it uses far less ingredients than an average General Tso’s.
Taste: A. Amazing. While it is a little different from “conventional” General Tso’s, it really is pretty great.
Health: A-. What can I say, soy sauce is extremely salty, but otherwise everything is pretty healthy.
Price: A. I had all of these ingredients already (besides the chicken), but this can serve multiple people and is probably even cheaper than buying it from a restaurant if you shop at the right places.
Overall: A. I really enjoyed both making this dish and eating it.