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General Tso's Chicken

Introduction & method

General Tso's Chicken is a very popular dish in American Chinese restaurants, but less well-known in the UK. It's a bit like the sweet and sour pork we get in UK Chinese takeaways, except the batter is crispy and the sauce doesn't glow in the dark.

General Tso's Chicken Recipe

Marinade the Chicken

Mix all the marinade ingredients in a bowl. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and stir them in, making sure they are all coated. Leave in the fridge until needed (a 10 minute marinade is enough!).

Make the Dry Coating

Mix all the dry coating ingredients together.

Make the Sauce

Mix all the sauce ingredients together except for the sesame oil, ginger, garlic and chilli. Sauté these in the sesame oil on medium heat for about 3 minutes, then add the rest of the sauce and simmer until needed.

Prepare the Chicken

Spoon about a tablespoon of the marinading liquid into the dry coating mixture. Dip the chicken pieces in, one at a time, and squeeze as much coating as possible onto each piece.

Cook the Chicken

Heat 75mm (3 inches) of vegetable oil in a wok until quite hot. Carefully lower in as many chicken pieces as will fit comfortably (depending on the size of your wok, you may need to cook them in 2 or 3 batches). Cook for 4 minutes, then drain and add them to the simmering sauce. Add the rest of the chicken as it is cooked.

Serve the sauced chicken with rice or noodles.

The video above is from the Keef Cooks YouTube channel. Click here to see the video recipe of General Tso's Chicken on YouTube.


Ingredients & Info

 1 egg white
 2 tbsp rice wine or dry sherry
 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
 quarter tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
 3 tbsp cornflour (corn starch)
 450 grams chicken thigh meat
 125 grams plain white (all-purpose) flour
 125 grams cornflour (corn starch)
 half a tsp baking powder
 half a tsp salt
 3 tbsp dark soy sauce
 2 tbsp rice wine or dry sherry
 2 tbsp rice vinegar
 3 tbsp chicken stock
 2 tbsp sugar
 1 tsp sesame oil
 1 tbsp cornflour (corn starch)
 2 tbsp hoisin sauce
 2 cms fresh ginger
 1 tsp garlic, crushed
 half a tsp red chilli flakes


Vegetable oil for frying.

US Customary/Imperial

Serves 4 
Prep time: 15 minutes.
Cooking time: 10 minutes.
Total time: 25 minutes.