FOOD-QUICKFIX-MCT

Quick-Fried Diced Chicken and Cucumbers. (Linda Gassenheimer/TNS)

Garlic, sherry and hoisin sauce flavor chicken in this quick Chinese stir-fry. The cooking time for the chicken recipe is only 5 minutes. The secret to this quick cooked dish is cutting the chicken and cucumbers into 1/2-inch pieces. The cucumber gives the dish an intriguing texture and flavor.

Hoisin sauce is a mixture of soybeans, garlic, chili peppers and spices. It can be found in the Asian section of the supermarket.

A small amount of dry sherry is called for in the chicken recipe. You can buy small bottles or splits of sherry at most liquor stores.

Helpful Hints

• Low-sodium soy sauce can be substituted for the Hoi Sin sauce.

• Chicken broth can be used instead of sherry.

• For easy stir-frying, place the prepared ingredients on a cutting board or plate in order of use. You won’t have to look at the recipe once you start to cook.

• A quick way to slice scallions is to snip them with a scissors.

Countdown

• Marinate chicken.

• While chicken marinates, prepare the other ingredients.

• Make rice.

• Stir-fry chicken.

Shopping List

To buy: 1 small bottle hoisin sauce, 1 small bottle dry sherry, 3/4 pound chicken tenders, 1 bottle ground ginger, 1 cucumber, 1 small bunch scallions, 1 container minced garlic and 1 package microwave brown rice.

Staples: sugar, cornstarch, canola oil, salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Quick-Fried Diced Chicken and Cucumber

Recipe by Linda Gassenheimer

2 teaspoons sugar

1/4 cup sherry

3 teaspoons minced garlic

2 teaspoons ground ginger

3/4 pound chicken tenders cut into 1/2-inch cubes

2 tablespoons cornstarch

2 tablespoons hoisin sauce

1 tablespoon water

1 medium cucumber (peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes, about 2 cups)

1 tablespoon canola oil

2 scallions, sliced

Mix sugar, sherry, garlic and ground ginger together. Marinate the chicken in sherry mixture for 7 to 10 minutes while you prepare other ingredients. Remove chicken from mixture to a plate reserving marinade. Sprinkle cornstarch over chicken and toss making sure all of the chicken is coated. Set aside. Mix hoisin sauce and water with marinade. Heat oil in wok or skillet, add chicken to the wok. Stir-fry 3 minutes. Add cucumber cubes and stir-fry 2 minutes. Remove to a bowl. Add marinade to the wok and cook 30 seconds. Pour sauce over chicken and cucumbers and toss well. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with scallions and spoon over rice.

Yield 2 servings

Per serving: 426 calories (25% from fat), 12.0 g fat (1.6 g saturated, 5.6 g monounsaturated), 126 mg cholesterol, 40.5 g protein, 29.7 g carbohydrates 2.1 g fiber, 345 mg sodium.

Microwaveable Brown Rice

Recipe by Linda Gassenheimer

1 package microwave brown rice (1 1/2-cups cooked)

2 teaspoons canola oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Microwave rice according to package instructions. Measure 1 1/2 cups rice and reserve remaining rice for another time. Add oil and salt and pepper to taste. Toss well.

Yield 2 servings.

Per serving: 226 calories (24% from fat), 6 g fat (0.7 g saturated, 3.4 g monounsaturated), no cholesterol, 4.2 g protein, 38.8 g carbohydrates, 2.4 g fiber, 6 mg sodium.

Linda Gassenheimer is an author of over 30 cookbooks. Her newest is “The 12-Week Diabetes Cookbook.” Find her on Facebook @FoodNewsandViews and Twitter @LGassenheimer, and listen to her podcasts at www.880thebiz.com.

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