This chilli chicken gravy is spicy, sweet and oh so delicious. With tender pieces of chicken and a punchy spicy sauce, its the perfect fake-away for a night in.
One of the things I love about living in Australia is the wonderful diversity of food and cuisines we have. Take away has always been a wonderful treat and I love that fact in cities you can practically eat a different cuisine every day for a month.
This chili chicken is not necessarily traditional or authentic, in much the same way many take away dishes in Australia have evolved and adapted over time. But is a delicious fake-away meal my family loves it. I hope yours will to.
Turn up the heat: like it hot? Replace the milder green and red chilis with you favorite chilies of choice such a jalapeno, birds eye or habaneros. Replace the black pepper with cayenne pepper or chilli powder. Add a little cayenne or chilli powder when seasoning the chicken coating.
Turn down the heat: not a fan of heat? You can omit the fresh chilli and chilli sauce and replace it with about two tablespoons of sweet chilli sauce. This will turn down the heat but still taste delicious.
Sauce it up: like it saucy? The recipe has enough sauce to coat the chicken and veg, but not a lot extra to soak into the rice. If you like is saucy you can double all the ingredients in the gravy section of the recipe.
Crisp it up: prefer your chicken extra crispy? Instead of pan frying try shallow frying the chicken in oil or in the air fryer for maximum crunch.
Add more veg: you can add more vegies to make this dish healthier. Some good possibilities include broccoli, mushrooms (technically fungi), carrots, snow peas (mange tout) or Asian greens. Healthy and delicious!
Chicken: boneless chicken is best for this recipe. I used breast but you could also use thie.
Corn flour: also known as corn starch and can be labeled as wheaten corn flour or corn (maize). The corn flour helps crisp up the chicken initially and thicken the gravy. You could use regular flour if you prefer, but your chicken won't be as crispy.
Egg: a little egg wash helps with the flour coating and helps keep this chicken moist and delicious. You could try substituting with butter milk instead if you are egg free.
Fresh chili: I use the larger, longer, and milder red and green chilies available from the supermarkets in Australia. You can absolutely mix things up with other chilies such as jalapeños, birds eye or habaneros.
Garlic: I use about three of four medium sized cloves fresh garlic in this recipe because I find it gives the best flavor. You could use minced garlic from a jar but check how much you need to put it to make up three or four cloves.
Ginger: I used fresh ginger in this recipe as again I find it gives the best flavor. You could use minced garlic from a jar but check how much you need to put it to make up three or four cloves.
Light Soy sauce: a little light soy sauce adds salt and flavor to this recipe without over powering it. If you can only get regular soy sauce I recommend halving the amount of soy sauce used, tasting and adding more if it needs it.
Vinegar: a bit of vinegar helps balance the sweetness of the sauce. I used apple cider vinegar but you can use other vinegar such as white or red or white wine vinegar.
Tomato sauce: also knows as tomato ketchup. This adds both tomato flavor and sweetness to this sauce. You could replace it with tomato paste or at a pinch even tinned tomatoes but you will need to add some brown sugar to balance the sauce and may need to add some water to make it saucy.
Chilli sauce: I use store brought chilli jam I had but you can use a fabulous homemade chilli jam whatever chilli sauce you like. Some popular options include siracha or even tabasco if that's what you have.
Capsicum: also known as peppers or bell peppers. I use a mix of red and green for taste and variety. Yellow capsicum would work well to. You could also replace or add extra veg if you want.
Brown onion: regular brown onion is fine for this recipe. You could also use white or red onion but it will be sweeter.
Spring onion: also called green onions or sometimes scallions. They add a pop of colour to the final dish but you can leave them out if you prefer.
How to make chilli chicken gravy
If serving with rice put the rice onto cook, especially if making it in a rice cooker which I prefer as its set and forget!
Slice and dice the vegetables and put them aside. Peel the garlic, finely grate the ginger and finely slice the chilli (if you are sensitive to chill use gloves and Always wash you hands properly afterwards). Put the flour, salt and pepper into a shallow bowl and mix well. In a separate bowl slightly beat the egg.
Hot tip: I always slice and dice my vegies first, give it a quick wipe and Then my meat. This saves you having to use two chopping boards and once you have cut up raw meat on a board you Must wash it properly before using it again.
Cut the chicken into cubes. Dip the chicken pieces into the egg wash and then into the flour mix, shaking off any excess flour. Put the pieces onto a plate and continue dipping and flouring the chicken until its all done.
Heat up the oil in a frypan until hot. Fry the chicken in batches until it nice and golden brown. If you try to cook all the chicken at once the heat will drop to much and you will end up with soggy stewed chicken.
Remove the chicken from the pan. Add a dash more oil and the onion and capsicum (bell peppers). Stir fry for a few minutes until it colors and is mostly cooked through. Remove from the pan and set aside.
Add a dash more oil and the ginger, garlic and chilli. Stir fry for a few seconds until fragrant. Add the soy sauce, tomato sauce, vinegar and chilli sauce. Mix well until the sauce thickens. Add the chicken and vegetables back into the pan and stir until coated and heated through.
Add the chicken and vegetables into the sauce and heat for a min or two until heated through before serving.
How to serve
Serve with rice and garnish with spring onions and dive into the spicy sticky goodness!
How to store
This spicy chicken is best eaten freshly cooked, but will store in a covered container in the fridge for up to three days.
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Chilli Chicken Gravy
- 1.1 lbs (500gms) boneless chicken
- ⅓ cup (50gms) corn flour
- 2 pinch's salt
- 2 pinch's pepper
- 1 large egg
- oil for pan frying
- 1 medium red capsicum
- 1 medium green capsicum
- 1 medium brown onion
- 2 - 3 spring onions
- sesame oil for pan frying
- 4 cloves garlic
- ½ inch fresh ginger
- ¼ fresh green chilli
- ¼ fresh red chilli
- 2 tablespoons (30mls) light soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon (15mls) vinegar
- ⅓ cup (85mls) tomato sauce
- 1 teaspoon chilli sauce
- If serving with rice put the rice onto cook, especially is using a rice cooker (my preferred method).
- Cut up the brown onion and capsicum. Slice the spring onions. Peel and crush the garlic. Grate the ginger (no need to peel). Deseed and finely chop the chillis.
- Measure the tomato sauce, soy sauce, vinegar and chilli sauce into a bowl and mix well.
- Put the flour onto a plate or shallow bowl. Add the salt and pepper and mix well. Put the egg onto a plate or shallow bowl and lightly beat.
- Cut the chicken to cubes and dip into the egg wash, then toss on the flour and shake off any excess flour. Continue until all the chicken is coated.
- Heat up a frying pan with the oil until hot. Add the chicken in batched, cooking until golden brown. Reheat before adding more chicken.
- Remove the chicken, add a dash more oil and stir fry the vegetables. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Reheat the pan and add a dash more oil. Add the garlic, chilli and ginger and stir for a few seconds until fragrant. Add the tomato sauces mix and stir well. If the sauce is a little thick you can add a dash of water.
- Add the chicken and vegetables back into the pan and stir until coated in sauce and heated through.
- Serve with rice and garnish with spring onions. Delicious!
- I use red and green chill but you can use your preferred chill
- You can use your preferred chill sauce
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