I love birthdays. They don’t have to be mine (and these days, I prefer it if they aren’t), as long as there is a birthday happening I get all giddy! I’m not sure if it is because my Mom wants us to have the most special day imaginable, or if she loves birthdays as much as I do, but she always goes out of her way to make the day “our” day. And to this day I love to make a big deal about birthdays because of her influence.
One of the reasons I like birthdays so much is that they are a great excuse for embracing your inner child. Be it with cake, or fairy bread, or brightly coloured wrapping paper; we all find ourselves channeling our inner kid on those days.
I love to make a big deal of Frank on his birthday. But I realised (and to quote Hallmark and possibly my mom) that we should always let people know how much we appreciate them, and not just on birthdays. So, this week I have been making Frank’s favorite food. First on the list: chicken stir-fry. I’ve been making this dish since we met, and Frank loves the kinda-home-made sauce that goes with it. He also loves the heap of chicken that makes up the dish!
I’ve found that stir-frying chicken makes it rubbery and tough. My secret to soft, delicious chicken in a stir-fry is to pre-bake the chicken and shred it into the stir-fry at the end. Baking preserves the juices, and adds additional flavour to the dish.
I made this for Frank last night and he loved it!
Frank’s chicken stir-fry – a lollcakes original
Serves two big eaters with some left-overs
olive oil/peanut oil
1 onion, finely sliced
1 clove garlic, crushed
3 chicken breasts
1 carrot, julienned
1 red capsicum, finely sliced
6 mushrooms, sliced
handful sugar-snap peas
bunch chinese broccoli, chopped
1 courgette, julienned
handful salted peanuts
bunch coriander, chopped
For the sauce:
1/2 cup sweet chilli sauce
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp lime juice
To serve: rice or noodles
Preheat the oven to 180C. Cover chicken with small amount of oil and bake for 40 mins, turning over after 20 minutes. Take out and shred into bite-sized pieces. While chicken is baking, mix all ingredients for the sauce in a bowl.
Heat remaining oil in a wok, and fry onion and garlic until soft. Add in rest of vegetables and stir-fry until cooked. Tip in sauce and chicken, and fry until hot. Finish off with peanuts and coriander, and serve on top of nice or noodles.