Gong Fu Chicken!

Someone recently asked what is my favorite sauce. Well, this is it! I call it Gong Fu Chicken. In English that means Achievement of Man, which describes this sauce perfectly. You’ll never find anything this yummy in Chinatown. The closest thing is sweet & sour chicken. This amazing sauce is served over chicken and zoodles, however it tastes equally delicious on Buffalo Chicken Wings or Sweet Potato Tots. “Zoodles” are easy to make with an inexpensive Kuhn Rikon julienne peeler or mandoline slicer, and my favorite way to make them is with the Paderno World Cuisine A4982799 Tri-Blade Plastic Spiral Vegetable Slicer!

Strangely, the recipe was inspired by my dietary testing. I discovered a widespread deficiency in my clients in vitamin K, especially vitamin K2. The world’s richest food source of vitamin K2 is Natto, Japanese fermented soybeans, a traditional delicacy to some, but with a flavor so unusual, few of us will ever become fans. Don’t buy Natto in Asian grocery stores, as it’s usually GMO soy laced with sugar and chemical additives. The best source for pure Natto made from non-gmo, organic fermented soybeans is Meguminatto in San Francisco. They sell to some Whole Foods Markets. Not expensive, so I ordered a case of it online, and was determined to create recipes that would mask the flavor, in order to enjoy its health benefits. When I added Natto beans to the blended Sweet & Sour Sauce below, it bestowed such a depth and feeling of vibrant health, that I knew instantly the recipe was a keeper. Ergo Gong Fu Sauce, Achievement of Man!  I took the dish to a potluck and it vanished in minutes. Oh, and it tastes quite delicious without Natto – way better than everyday Sweet & Sour Sauce, so I consider the Natto optional. I served it over my favorite Zoodles instead of high-carb rice. Try it! Serves 4.

Sweet-sour-chicken-vertical

Gong Fu Chicken

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Ingredients

    Gong Fu Sauce:
  • 6 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sweetener, or more to taste, some brown if possible. I used Just Like Sugar Table Top natural chicory root sweetener
  • 1/4 cup liquid coconut aminos
  • 3 large cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 3-inches fresh ginger root, diced
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 medium onion, in coarse chunks
  • 1 bunch green onions, the white half, coarsely chopped
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne powder (If you're avoiding nightshades, substitute 1 teaspoon ground mustard)
  • 1 cup tomato puree or strained tomatoes (If you're avoiding nightshades, substitute 1/4 cup lemon juice, 1/4 cup grated apple or carrot, and 1/2 cup water.)
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon unprocessed salt
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons organic Natto, fermented soybeans (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot flour
  • Garnish with green onions, green part, diced
  • Veggies:
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 large onion, in 1-inch chunks
  • 8 ounces fresh shiitake mushrooms, coarsely sliced
  • Chicken & Batter:
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 cup arrowroot flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon unprocessed salt
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 pound organic or non-GMO chicken tenders, or chicken in thin slices
  • Zoodles:
  • 2 medium zucchini

Instructions

    Gong Fu Sauce:
  1. In any blender, add all sauce ingredients. Blend well until smooth. Hah! That was easy! Put it in a saucepan ready to heat, and set aside.
  2. Veggies:
  3. In a medium skillet, melt 1 tablespoon coconut oil over medium heat. Add onion and sauté briefly. Add mushrooms and sauté briefly. Add a bit of salt. Turn the heat off and set aside.
  4. Chicken & Batter:
  5. In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs.
  6. In another small bowl, whisk together the almond meal, arrowroot flour, and salt.
  7. In a large non-stick skillet, melt 2 tablespoons coconut oil over medium heat. When a drop of water sizzles in the oil, it’s ready. Dip chicken tenders in eggs, then coat them in the flour mixture. Fry the chicken for a minute or two until barely golden on each side.
  8. Zoodles:
  9. Make the zoodles using a spiralizer or mandoline slicer. Place them in a steamer with 1/2-inch of filtered water underneath, making sure the zoodles don’t touch the water.
  10. Bring the water to a boil in the covered steamer with zoodles. When the water is at a rolling boil, turn the heat down to medium. Allow the zoodles to steam 3-5 minutes until “al dente”. Don’t overcook or they’ll be limp. It’s a good idea to uncover the steamer and gently stir from time to time to move the zoodles around so the steam cooks them evenly. When the zoodles are barely “al dente”, drain the water.
  11. Serve:
  12. To serve, have everything hot: Zoodles, veggies, chicken, and Gong Fu sauce. When you’re ready to serve, place the hot zoodles into a large serving bowl, such as a risotto bowl. Add salt, olive oil, a bit of salt, and stir them a bit to coat evenly. Put veggies on the bed of zoodles. Add chicken on top. Then pour the sauce over everything. Garnish with sliced green onions. Serve!