Friday, July 22, 2016

My Mother's Chinese Chicken Stir Fry


 When we came to the United States in the early 70's my mother cooked mostly Sri Lankan food.  We needed to keep our connection to our homeland and food was a great way to do that at the time.  After a few years here, my mother started to experiment with other foods from American, Italian and Chinese.  

You may scratch your head when you look at the ingredients list below and you see curry leaves, pandan leaves, cardamoms, cloves...and how they can be in a Chinese dish.  Well, you can't take the Sri Lankan cook out of my mother and that's how she made her Chinese Stir Fry.  

The only thing I know is that it was one of my favorite dishes to eat and it became a family favorite for a quick weeknight meal. Yes... this stir fry is considered quick in my mother's book because it's a one pot dish with rice.  She is so used to cooking 3-4 dishes to eat a rice and curry meal that a one pot dish is a breeze for her.  I loved making this dish with her because it brought back some sweet memories of my childhood.

3lbs skinless bone-in chicken cut into large chunks
10-12 curry leaves
1-2 pandan leaves
3-4 green cardamom pods
3-4 black cloves
1 small cinnamon stick (1inch long)
salt and black pepper to taste
1Tbs grated ginger
1Tbs grated garlic
1/4 cup soy sauce (or to taste for salt)
1 1/2 cups water
2 carrots peeled and chopped or sliced
2 stalks celery sliced
1 onion sliced
1 bell pepper sliced
1 can water chestnuts drained
1 bunch green onions sliced
2Tbs cornstarch with a little water to thicken sauce

Recommended Garnish:  store bought Chow Mein Noodles

Note:  I cooked a double recipe in the photos below so if you see more quantity than suggested, that is why.  The recipe provided should feed about 4 people. 

Cut chicken into large chunks with bone-in and marinate for 1 hour with some salt and black pepper.  Then heat 2-3 Tbs canola oil in large pan or wok and add the cardamoms, cloves, cinnamon stick, curry leaves and pandan leaves for 30-45 seconds.  Next add the marinated chicken and cook for 3-5 minutes.

 Then add ginger and garlic and cook for another 2 minutes.  Next add the carrots, celery and onion to the dish and cook for 2-3 minutes. Then add the soy sauce and water to cook the chicken.  Cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

 Once the chicken is cooked through, add the bell pepper, water chestnuts and green onion.  Cook for another 5 minutes (preferably covered).  Finally make the cornstarch and water slurry and pour into pan.  Stir well and allow the gravy to thicken.   Taste for seasoning and serve with rice.  Enjoy.

Copyright: All recipes, content, and images (unless otherwise stated) are the sole property of Kitchen Simmer formerly known as Curry and Comfort. Please do not use without prior written consent. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.


  1. I can see why this is a family favorite! We never tire of eating stir-frys.

  2. Wonderful recipe! I would definitely try this out for dinner. Please have a peek at this web-site if you love reading and writing amazing articles.

  3. I had a great time reading this kind of valuable post. Please keep sharing and enlightening your readers' minds. Visit my Lawrence Todd Maxwell pinterest page when you have some spare time.

  4. Looking for someone to write your research paper for you? Whether you need to write an essay for school, an article for your magazine, or a book, I can assist you. I am available 24/7, so contact with me and see how much fun it can be !APA Format or MLA Format?The APA and MLA styles of citation are different in many ways. There are differences in what is considered the proper format for citations, how information should be organized within references, how the endnotes are formatted and used, and how to format verbatim quotations.

  5. Why do people buy research papers online? Research papers have always been the subject of discussions. But now, with the help of modern technology, you can buy research papers online at a convenient price. I am an essay writer assigned to write papers for you. .What is a typical research paper in anthropology? What are the qualifications for a typical research paper in anthropology? There are several qualifications for a typical research paper in you offer purchase of essay on the web? We don't offer purchase of essay on web, but we do provide help with writing essays.

  6. 에볼루션접속 먹튀검증 안전노리터 go

  7. As online games becomes more socially acceptable and federally regulated, players have much more peace of mind playing online than they did in decades past. No longer do online players at this site have to worry about the legality of the games they are playing or the safety of their identity and money.


Please leave a comment, we love to hear from you....