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Gong Bao Chicken (Gong Bao Ji Ding)

A must-try, popular tze char dish of gōng bǎo jī dīng (宫保鸡丁- chicken fried with dried chillies) using this tried and tested recipe for an authentic gōng bǎo sauce and gōng bǎo chicken dish.
Celia Lim
Course: Main Course, Main Dish, Meat
Cuisine: Asian, Chinese
Servings :4 persons
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 55 mins


  • 3 chicken thighs, deboned
  • 5 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
  • 1 tbsp minced ginger
  • 1 stalk spring onion, chopped into sections
  • 15 - 20 dried red chillies, cut into sections
  • 1/2 tbsp Sichuan peppercorns
  • 1/2 cup toasted cashew nuts (or peanuts)
  • 1/2 cup cooking oil

For the Marinade:

  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1 1/2 tsp light soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp chicken seasoning powder
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 2 tsp corn flour

For the Sauce:

  • 3 tbsp black vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 3 tbsp water
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 - 1 1/2 tsp corn starch, mixed with 1 tbsp water

For Garnishing (optional):

  • Some finely chopped spring onion


  • Cut boneless chicken into 2-cm (1-inch) pieces. In a mixing bowl, combine marinade with chicken pieces and let marinate for 30 minutes.
  • Cut dried chillies diagonally into big sections (using a pair of kitchen scissors), and remove the seeds. Dip into cold water and immediately drain. Set aside.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine sauce ingredients and stir until sugar dissolves.
  • Heat up 1/2 cup of oil in a wok over medium heat until moderately hot (about 160 - 170 deg C or 320 - 340 deg F). Fry chicken chunks in two batches, until chicken pieces are cooked and lightly browned. Scoop out with a perforated ladle and let drain on paper towels. Set aside. Drain the wok of oil, wash and dry the wok.
  • Heat up 4 tbsp of oil in the wok over low heat. Fry the Sichuan peppercorns until fragrant, scoop out and discard (or set aside half for later). Fry dried chillies in the same oil until chillies expand and turn reddish brown in colour. Scoop out and set aside.
  • In the same oil, fry garlic slices, minced ginger and chopped spring onion briefly until fragrant. Add sauce mixture (and half of the fried peppercorns if desired), and let simmer for a while, or until sauce is reduced to the consistency of a thin glaze. Add fried chicken pieces, fried chillies, toasted cashew nuts (or peanuts), and toss vigorously to evenly coat the chicken with sauce. Scoop out onto a serving dish, garnish with chopped spring onions, and serve immediately. Enjoy hot, with plain steamed rice.
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