Chinese Cuisine: Chicken with Cloud Ears Recipe
- 12 cloud ears, wood ears or other dried Chinese mushrooms, soaked in boiling water for 5 minutes
- 1lb chicken breasts, boned and thinly sliced
- 1 egg white
- 2 tsps cornstarch
- 2 tsps white wine
- 2 tsps sesame oil
- 1-inch piece fresh ginger, left whole
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 1/4 cups oil
- 1 1/4 cups chicken stock
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 3 tbsps light soy sauce
- Pinch salt and pepper
- #Cloud ears is the delightful name for an edible tree fungus which is mushroom-like in taste and texture.# Soak the mushrooms until they soften and swell. Remove all the skin and bone from the chicken and cut it into thin slices. Mix the chicken with the egg white, cornstarch, wine and sesame oil.
- Heat the wok for a few minutes and pour in the oil. Add the whole piece of ginger and whole garlic clove to the oil and cook for about 1 minute. Take them out and reduce the heat.
- Add about a quarter of the chicken at a time and stir-fry for about 1 minute. Remove and continue cooking until all the chicken is fried. Remove all but about 2 tbsps of the oil from the wok.
- Drain the mushrooms and squeeze them to extract all the liquid, if using mushrooms with stems, remove the stems before slicing thinly. Cut cloud ears or wood ears into smaller pieces. Add to the wok and cook for about 1 minute. Add the stock and allow it to come almost to the oil. Mix together the cornstarch and soy sauce and add a spoonful of the hot stock.
- Add the mixture to the wok, stirring constantly, and bring to the boil. Allow to boil 1-2 minutes or until thickened. The sauce will clear when the cornstarch has cooked sufficiently.
- Return the chicken to the wok and add salt and pepper. Stir thoroughly for about 1 minute and serve immediately. #PREPARATION# If desired, the chicken may be cut into 1-inch cubes. If slicing, cut across the grain as this helps the chicken to cook more evenly. #BUYING GUIDE# Cloud ears or wood ears are a type of edible Chinese tree fungus. They are both, like all Chinese mushrooms, are more readily available from Chinese supermarkets and some delicatessens.