1 teaspoon each baking soda and cornflour
1 tablespoon each Shaoxing Chinese cooking wine and Lee Kum Kee Salt Reduced Soy Sauce
800 grams boneless skin-off chicken thighs, cut into 2cm pieces
1 teaspoon cornflour
¼ cup Lee Kum Kee Salt Reduced Soy Sauce
2 tablespoons each Chinkiang black vinegar and Shaoxing Chinese cooking wine
2 teaspoons each kecap manis sauce and Lee Kum Kee Hoisin Sauce
1 teaspoon caster sugar
1/3 cup water
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
2 teaspoons Sichuan peppercorns, toasted and finely ground
rice bran oil for cooking
4-8 small dried chillies, depending on the heat required (see Cook’s note)
3 spring onions, cut into 2cm pieces
½ cup roasted cashew nuts, roughly chopped
hot cooked egg noodles
steamed bok choy
extra roasted cashew nuts
CHICKEN: Combine the baking soda and cornflour together in a large bowl, stir in the Shaoxing wine and soy sauce and then add the chicken, turning to coat. Set aside for 20-30 minutes.
SAUCE: Stir the cornflour with a little of the soy sauce until smooth then add all the remaining ingredients. Set aside.
TO COOK: Combine the garlic, ginger and ground Sichuan peppercorns and set aside. Heat a large sauté pan or wok over a high heat with 2 tablespoons of oil. Add the chicken in batches and cook until golden and cooked through. Remove with a slotted spoon and place in a bowl. Repeat with the remaining chicken, adding a little more oil if needed. Add the chillies to the pan for 30 seconds then stir in the garlic mixture and stir-fry for 1 minute until fragrant. Give the sauce a stir and tip into the pan, stirring until it starts to thicken and comes to the boil. Tip the chicken back into the pan and turn to coat in the sauce. Cook for 3 minutes then stir in the spring onions and cashew nuts.
TO SERVE: Divide the noodles between bowls and top with the chicken and bok choy. Garnish with extra nuts and crispy shallots.
COOK’S NOTE: Break the dried chillies open and shake out the seeds. Add both to the pan if you want a very spicy version; otherwise, discard the seeds.