This tamarind chicken stir fry is simultaneously sweet yet sour. Most importantly, it’s delicious! An easy weeknight meal.
If you haven’t tried cooking with tamarind puree before, I’d highly recommend giving it a go. It’s widely available at supermarkets in New Zealand, or try your local Asian grocery store.
In this recipe, the sour tamarind puree is balanced out with some brown sugar and a few other ingredients, including star anise, to give a very flavoursome stir fry.
Caramelised eggplant, crunchy peanuts and fresh coriander make perfect finishing touches. Serve on fluffy white rice.
Refrigerate any leftover tamarind puree – it’s also one of the ingredients found in Pad Thai, recipe coming soon!
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This sweet yet sour tamarind chicken pairs perfectly with caramelised eggplant, crunchy peanuts and fresh coriander. Serve on fluffy white rice.
Preheat oven to 220ºC (430ºF) fan bake and line a large oven tray with baking paper.
PREPARE CHICKEN INGREDIENTS
Crush garlic. In a medium bowl or jug, whisk together garlic, sugar, water, soy sauce, tamarind puree, vinegar, tomato paste, star anise and ginger. Dice chicken into 2-3cm / 1in pieces and season with salt and pepper. Cut snow peas into 3 pieces (trim ends).
Dice eggplant into large 2-3cm / 1in cubes. Place on prepared tray, drizzle with oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat, then arrange in a single layer. Roast for 20 minutes, until golden and caramelised.
Meanwhile, place rice and water in a large non-stick saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a gentle simmer then cover with a lid and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook for 13-15 minutes, until all water is absorbed (tilt saucepan to check). Remove from heat and leave to rest (with lid on) for 10 minutes.
While eggplant and rice cook, heat oil in a large wok on high. Add chicken and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden and a little crisp (about 5 minutes) - you may need to do this in two batches. Add snow peas and stir fry for a minute. Pour in sauce, reduce heat to medium-high and simmer for 3-4 minutes, until slightly thickened. Add eggplant and spinach and toss to combine. Remove star anise and discard.
Fluff rice with a fork. Divide between warmed serving plates or bowls. Top with tamarind chicken. Sprinkle with peanuts and garnish with coriander, if using.
WINE MATCH: Try a Sauvignon Blanc.
GLUTEN-FREE OPTION: Use gluten-free soy sauce.
INGREDIENT SWAPS / NOTES: Tamarind puree should be available from your local supermarket or Asian grocery store. If you can’t find snow peas, sugar snap peas or green beans are great alternatives.
STORING AND REHEATING: Refrigerate individual portions of rice and tamarind chicken together and reheat in the microwave. Add peanuts and coriander just before serving.