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TMCNet:  Diabetes Quick Fix: Chinese Chicken with Cashew Nuts and Litchi Cup

[February 11, 2013]

Diabetes Quick Fix: Chinese Chicken with Cashew Nuts and Litchi Cup

Feb 11, 2013 (McClatchy-Tribune News Service - McClatchy-Tribune News Service via COMTEX) -- Stir-fried, crisp chicken with cashew nuts is a popular Chinese dish. It's easy and quick to prepare at home.

Toasted sesame oil is available in most supermarkets. Toasting the sesame seeds gives the oil a deep, nutty, sesame flavor. Rice vinegar is a mild condiment made from fermented rice.

Brown rice takes about 45 minutes to cook. There are several brands of quick-cooking brown rice available. Their cooking time ranges from 10 minutes to 30 minutes. I find the 30 minute rice has more flavor, but any quick-cooking rice will work for this dinner.

I call for a small amount of dry sherry in the chicken recipe. You can buy small bottles or splits of sherry at most liquor stores.

Note: Chinese recipes have more ingredients than other recipes, but take only a few minutes to cook. It's worth a little extra effort for true Chinese flavor without extra carbohydrates.

HELPFUL HINTS: _The secret to crisp, not steamed, stir-frying is to let the ingredients sit for about a minute when added to the hot wok before tossing them. This allows the wok to regain its heat after the cold ingredients have been added.

_White vinegar diluted with a little water can be used instead of rice vinegar.

_For easy stir-frying, place all of 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.

_Make sure your wok is very hot before adding the ingredients.

COUNTDOWN: _Marinate chicken.

_Place water for rice on to boil.

_Prepare remaining chicken ingredients.

_Make rice.

_Stir-fry chicken.

___ CHINESE CHICKEN WITH CASHEW NUTS \ cup lite soy sauce \ cup rice vinegar \ cup dry sherry 2 tbsp chopped fresh ginger (or 2 tsp ground ginger) 3 medium cloves garlic, crushed { pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into {-inch pieces 2 tsp sesame oil 1 medium red bell pepper, sliced (1 cup) 1 tsp cornstarch Salt and fresh ground black pepper \ cup cashew nuts 2 scallions, sliced Mix soy sauce, vinegar, sherry, ginger and garlic together in a small bowl. Add chicken and marinate while you prepare the other ingredients. Heat a wok or skillet over high heat and add sesame oil. Remove chicken from marinade with a slotted spoon, reserving liquid. Add chicken to wok and stir-fry 2 minutes. Remove to a plate. Add red bell pepper. Stir-fry 2 minutes. Mix the cornstarch with reserved marinade. Add marinade and chicken to the wok and stir-fry 2 minutes with the peppers. Remove from heat. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle cashew nuts and scallions on top and serve over rice. Makes 2 servings.

Per serving: 372 calories,16 g fat, 4 g saturated fat, 68 mg cholesterol, 30 g protein, 21 g carbohydrates, 2 g dietary fiber, 11 g sugars, 1,281 mg sodium.

Exchanges/Choices: 1 { carbohydrate, 4 lean meat, 3 fat.

___ QUICK BROWN RICE 1 1/3 cup water { cup quick-cooking brown rice 2 cups broccoli florets 1 tsp sesame oil Salt and freshly ground black pepper Bring water to a boil over high heat and add rice. Bring back to a simmer, lower to medium heat, cover and cook 25 minutes or according to package instructions. Add broccoli florets, cover, and continue to cook 5 minutes. The water should be evaporated. If not, remove the cover and cook a few minutes further. If the rice becomes dry before it is cooked, add more water. Add oil and salt and pepper to taste. Makes 2 servings.

Per serving: 210 calories, 4 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, no cholesterol, 7 g protein,39 g carbohydrates, 4 g dietary fiber,1 g sugars, 22 mg sodium.

Exchanges/Choices: 2 starch, 1 vegetable, { fat ___ SHOPPING LIST: 1 medium red bell pepper, 1 small bunch scallions, 1 small piece fresh ginger (or ground ginger), 1 small package broccoli florets, { pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, 1 small bottle lite soy sauce, 1 small bottle rice vinegar, 1 small bottle dry sherry, 1 small bottle toasted sesame oil and 1 small package unsalted cashew nuts Staples: Garlic, quick-cooking brown rice, cornstarch, salt, and black peppercorns ___ (From "Mix'n'Match Meals in Minutes for People with Diabetes" by Linda Gassenheimer, published by the American Diabetes Association. Reprinted with permission from The American Diabetes Association. To order this book call 1-800-232-6733 or order online at http://store.diabetes.org) Distributed by MCT Information Services

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