07 January 2013

How to...slice chicken!

I know - "how to slice chicken" sounds crazy, right? How difficult can it be? Well, it's not difficult at all, but I'm going to tell you about the few little tricks that I use to make the chicken super-tender.


I discovered this when I started making the chicken stir-fry for the freezer. The chicken was melt-in-your-mouth tender and full of flavor. Gus and I were amazed that frozen chicken could be so good.

I start with a boneless, skinless chicken breast and remove any remaining fat and/or gristle. (Around this house, one must use a surgically precise technique for excising all nastiness from chicken or Gus and Lulu won't eat it.)


Then I cut it diagonally in thin slices about 1/4" thick. If they're too long, I just cut them in half so that they're all about 2-3" long.


Next I heat up the wok and add a little olive oil. I add a little chopped onion and minced garlic, cook for a few minutes, then add the chicken. I keep the heat on medium because I want the chicken to get  light brown "crust" on the outside - I don't want that limp, rubbery stuff you get when you cook chicken on low heat. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Since I'm going to freeze it or use it in something that needs to cook more, I don't worry about cooking the chicken all the way through. Don't overcook! I add a little chicken broth or teriyaki sauce, move it to a plate/bowl to cool a little, then place it in a ziploc freezer bag marked with the name and date.

TIP: When placing the chicken in the bag, flatten it out so that it's in a single layer, then lay the bag flat in the freezer. Once it's frozen, it will lay flat by itself and you can move it as you like. This single layer also makes for quick and easy thawing!

To use: Thaw in the refrigerator. You don't necessarily have to thaw it completely since you'll be reheating it. But once it's thawed, I recommend using within 24-48 hours. Use it in stir-fry or whatever dish you like!

If you keep a few of these in your freezer, you'll always have a quick meal on hand - and you'll be amazed at the tenderness of the chicken.