Thursday, September 22, 2011

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken



I love orange chicken.  But not just any orange chicken, a delicious sweet and crispy orange chicken that I remember eating when my family lived in Washington.  The restaurant was an old pizza place that had been remodeled into a Chinese restaurant. My mom used to take us there and my memory of the orange chicken leaves me drooling.  Now, as a grown up nothing has quite matched up.  Oh, yes, I have found many an orange chicken dish to try but none left me wanting more.  They were too sweet, not orangey enough, too sour, too gooey/sticky/thickish or simply just not good.

So, when I stumbled onto this recipe I was excited for a few reasons.  First, I had all the ingredients (WOOT!).  Second, it cooked in the slow cooker (WOOT! WOOT!) and third, it is much healthier than fried versions (Triple WOOT!).  While it may not be what others deem as the best ever,  I was pleasantly surprised how the flavors came together.  The orange flavor is front and center, but other flavors join in and create a sweet and savory sauce that doesn't remind one of breakfast.  We served it over home made rice pilaf and fresh green beans on the side.  My kiddos devoured it, and I am anxiously awaiting lunch tomorrow when I can eat some of the leftovers.  ENJOY!

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken
Recipe Source: Modified slightly from Fake Ginger

1 pound boneless chicken, cut in 2-inch chunks
1/2 tablespoon kosher salt
6 ounces (1/2 can) frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
3 tablespoons brown sugar or honey
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons ketchup
1/2 tablespoon grated ginger
1/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
Red pepper flakes to taste if desired.

**Cook's Note-I used a tiny pinch of the red pepper flakes in the recipe and sprinkled more on top afterwards for more heat.**

Put the chicken pieces into your slow cooker. In a small mixing bowl, combine the orange juice concentrate, brown sugar, balsamic vinegar, salt,  ketchup, ginger and garlic. Pour sauce mixture evenly over the chicken, and toss to coat.

Cover and cook on low for 6 hours, or on high for 3 to 4. If desired thicken with some cornstarch and water during the last 10 minutes of cooking.  Serve over rice.

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2 comments:

  1. I ever searched for a good Orange chicken recipe.. but I didn't find one.. Now I finally tried your's.... and it was amazing!! Keep on going like this!
    Maybe you'll also visit our Gastro-Blog, where you can find a lot of interesting things and reviews.. We started 2 days ago, and it will be much better.. http://gastrocheckers.blogspot.com

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