Last summer our family received some interesting news--my husband has developed a gluten intolerance. Apparently there is a gene that some people have and it can be triggered anytime-- for him it was this past summer. It got so bad that not only did his stomach become distented (think those starving African children who have bloated stomachs, which is so sad) and his feet/ankles swelled, he became iron and folic acid anemic. The doctors orders--off gluten NOW. And thus my quest to find good gluten free alternatives has begun. I stalk my new favorite cooking blogs, magazines, and websites almost daily looking for easy family friendly recipes. My husband often gets a bit depressed about it, because just grabbing a quick bite out to eat isn't an option for him anymore. What's worse, he has had to give up some of his favorite foods--especially bread, his beloved licorice, and Chinese.
Sticking to lean meat/protein, and a variety of veggies makes cooking dinner simple--kinda. Reading labels is now even more essential for me. Who knew so many things had gluten in them. For example--rice krispies are a no-no because they have malt coating for flavor and malt is wheat... or did you know tomato soup uses flour as thickener? I do now. Thanksgiving was a experiment in finding gluten free options--traditional stuffing-OUT, rolls/bread with dinner-OUT, pie crust-OUT. Mad Props to my Mother-In-Law as she went all out to make my hubby feel comfortable and really worked hard to make his favorites gluten free.
Fast forward for the reason for my post, it's taken a few months of experimentation, but I've come up with a GREAT recipe for Orange Chicken. So if you are like our family and are living the gluten free lifestyle, I hope you enjoy.
Orange Ginger Chicken
1/3 cup all purpose gluten free flour (we like King Arthur the best)
6 boneless skinless chicken thighs or 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 lbs) cubed into medium chunks.
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
2-3 TBSP. canola oil (I use EVOO)
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup orange marmalade
2 TBSP. gluten free soy sauce (we use San-J Tamari Gluten Free/Reduced Sodium Soy Sauce in the white bottle)
2 TBSP. Honey
1/2 to 1 tsp. Ground Ginger (according to your taste)
Optional Garnish: sesame seeds or thinly sliced green onion
1. Place flour, salt, and pepper in a large resealable plastic bag. Add to bag, a few pieces at a time and shake to coat. In a large skillet, cook chicken in oil in batches on medium heat until chicken is no longer pink. Remove and keep warm. (NOTE: You will end up with a bit of excess flour in the pan, what I've done is add a bit more EVOO and keep cooking as it helps the chicken get a crunchier coating and it helps thicken the sauce!)
2. In the same skillet, combine the juice, marmalade, soy sauce, honey and ginger. Bring to a boil, stirring to loosen browned bits from the pan; cook and stir until thickened. Return chicken to pan; heat through. Sprinkle with green onion and/or sesame seeds if desired.
3. Serve over rice.