Are you a fan of bold and flavorful Chinese cuisine? Then the Sha Cha Chicken recipe is definitely for you! Read on to learn how this classic dish can be easily prepared in your own kitchen.
Sha Cha chicken is a renowned dish in Chinese cuisine, crafted with tenderly diced chicken and a savoury sauce composed of blended spices and seasonings dubbed “sha cha” sauce. The dish is often stir-fried with vegetables and served with rice or noodles. Some versions of the dish might also have ingredients like peanuts, cilantro, and sesame seeds.
What is Sha Cha sauce?
We know that Sha cha sauce is a key ingredient in Sha cha chicken. It gives the dish a rich, delicious flavor. Have you ever wondered what makes this sauce so special?
Well, we’ve got the inside scoop for you! Sha cha sauce is made with a carefully crafted mix of spices and seasonings like garlic, onions, peanuts, dried shrimp, and soy sauce. The result is a light brown, paste-like texture that you’ll love.
So the next time you savor a bite of Sha cha chicken, you’ll know just how much effort went into creating that delicious sauce. And who knows, maybe you’ll even try making your own Sha cha sauce at home!
How to choose Sha Cha sauce
Here’s what you should look for before making a purchase:
- Check the label: A good product should have clear and easy-to-read labeling with information about the product name, ingredients, net content, production date, shelf life, storage conditions, manufacturer, and contact info, product standard number, production license number, and nutritional content. Always double-check the label before buying and go for the freshest product.
- Check the ingredients: The ingredients should be listed in order of highest to lowest quantity. Try to avoid products with harmful food additives.
- Check the appearance: The best sha cha sauce is reddish-brown in color and has a light shine. If there are peanuts in it, the texture should be grainy and the consistency should be moderate. If the sauce is too dark, too thin, too thick, or has too much liquid, it’s probably not top quality.
- Check the smell: A premium sha cha sauce should have a complex aroma with natural and fresh fragrances. If it has a one-dimensional smell or lacks a unique umami flavor, it’s probably not top quality.
- Taste the sauce: The best sha cha sauce should have a well-balanced flavor with hints of dried shrimp, garlic, green onion, ginger, and pepper. It should be slightly sweet and spicy. If the flavor is too light or lacks complexity, it may not be the best quality.
Remember, these tips will help you choose the best sha cha sauce. Don’t settle for anything less than the best!
How to choose Chicken for Sha Cha Chicken:
If you’re health-conscious or working out, go for chicken breasts. They’re lower in fat and calories than other parts of the poultry. But don’t feel limited to just chicken breasts. You have options! Other parts like legs or wings might suit your taste buds better. It all comes down to your flavor preference and dietary needs.
- Don’t overcook it! Aim for a cooking time of about 8 minutes.
- Use fresh, tender chicken, like free-range or chicken thighs. Avoid using old chicken as it will be tough.
- Before frying, give your pan a light coat of oil to prevent sticking.
- Cook slowly, paying close attention to the heat to avoid burning.
And remember, there’s no need to add extra salt. The chicken is already marinated with salt, plus oyster and sha cha sauces that are both high in sodium.
Cooking chicken that’s both golden brown on the outside and juicy on the inside is all about finding the right balance. Give it a try and let us know how it turns out!
Sha Cha Chicken
- Sha Cha sauce
- Cooking oil
- Debone the chicken and cut it into equal sizes. This will allow it to cook evenly.
- Combine 2 tablespoons of sha cha sauce, 1 tablespoon of starch, and 1 tablespoon of cooking oil in a bowl. Then coat the chicken pieces with the sauce mixture.
- Marinate the chicken for 20-30 minutes.
- Heat some oil in a pan and add sliced ginger.
- Once the oil heats up, lay your marinated chicken in the pan with its skin facing downwards.. To ensure that the chicken cooks evenly, make sure to spread it in a single layer and not stack it. Cook over medium-low heat for best results.
- After a few minutes, sprinkle in the scallions and flip your chicken to cook its other side for 1-2 minutes more.
- Crank up the heat and add a spoonful of water. Cover the pan, then reduce to low flame and let simmer for another 5 minutes.
- Garnish with cilantro before serving.
- To make sure the chicken tastes fresh and tender, it is important to not cook it for too long. The total cooking time should be around 8 minutes. The surface of the chicken should be golden brown, while the inside should be juicy.
- For this dish, use free-range, tender chicken. Chicken thighs are also a good option. Don’t use old chicken because the meat will be tough.
- Before frying the chicken, make sure to lightly coat your pan with oil. This will help ensure that it doesn’t stick while cooking. Be careful not to overcook the chicken as this can make it taste quite bitter.
- Pay close attention to the heat and cook slowly so the chicken does not burn.
- With the chicken already marinated with salt, plus oyster and sha cha sauces both packed with sodium, there’s no need to add extra salt during cooking.