top of page

Black Bean Chicken and Vegetable Stir Fry

Cape Cod has many qualities, access to great food is not necessarily one of them, especially where Chinese restaurants are concerned. I really wanted Dou Chi Ji Ding for dinner, but a trek to Boston seemed a bit self-indulgent and expensive and cold, so I made a stir fry for dinner that was more of an ode to the Szechuanese dish than anything resembling the real thing.

Once I decided to go my own way, I added more vegetables than the original dish usually contains and ended up with a stir fry that satiated my need for Chinese food, but which I must add was not an authentic dish in any way delicious though it certainly was.

5-8 ozs chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces

1/2 cup red pepper, cut into pieces roughly the same size as the chicken

1 1/2 cups Napa cabbage, leaves thinly sliced

1/4 cup white onion, cut into half moons

1Tbsp Shaoxing wine, Sake or Vermouth

1/3 cup chicken stock

1 1/2 tsps cornstarch

1 Tbsp soy sauce

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

1 tsp ginger, peeled and sliced into thin batons

1 Tbsp fermented black beans, rinsed and drained or 1 Tbsp bottled black beans from the international grocery section of your local supermarket which do not need to be rinsed.

1 tsp red pepper flakes

2 tsps sliced green onion

1/2 tsp sesame oil

2 tsps vegetable oil

Salt to taste

Put the chicken in a bowl and add the Sake, soy sauce and cornstarch, Mix well to combine and set aside to marinate.

Heat the vegetable oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. As soon as the oil shimmers, add the garlic, ginger and onion and cook, stirring constantly, until the aromatics are very fragrant and the onion is becoming translucent. This will take a minute or two.

Remove the chicken from the bowl with a slotted spoon and add to the pan, reserving the marinade. Salt lightly and cook, stirring from time to time until the chicken pieces have started to color on all sides. This took me about three minutes.

Add the red pepper pieces, the red pepper flakes and the black beans and stir to combine with the chicken.

Top with the cabbage and drizzle with the stock. Cover and turn the heat to low. Cook for five minutes without uncovering to allow the chicken to finish cooking.

After five minutes, remove the lid from the pan and stir to combine the now wilted cabbage with the rest of the ingredients.

Turn the heat back up to medium and add the remaining marinade to the pan. Cook stirring constantly until the cornstarch in the marinade has thickened the pan juices and every element of the dish has a glossy sheen of sauce coating it.

Stir in the scallions and the sesame oil. Taste and add salt if needed.

Serve with steamed white rice or stuffed into bao buns.

Inspiration recipe, here.


bottom of page