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Celebrate Chinese New Year by pulling out the stir fryer

Celebrate Chinese New Year by pulling out the stir fryer

January 11th, 2017 by Associated Press in Life & Entertainment

This Jan. 2, 2017 photo provided by The Culinary Institute of America shows Chinese take-out chicken & Broccoli Rbe in Hyde Park, N.Y. This dish is from a recipe by the CIA. (Phil Mansfield/The Culinary Institute of America via AP)

At the same time many of us are packing away our noisemakers and Champagne glasses, people all over the world are just beginning to prepare for the new year.

Chinese New Year is a celebration of the lunar new year — the first day on a calendar based on the phases of the moon. The lunar new year is celebrated all over the world (this year on Jan. 28), with each country and culture having its own different traditions and celebrations. The Chinese New Year festival is widely celebrated in China, but also in other countries like Singapore, Taiwan and Malaysia, where there are many people of Chinese origin.

Chinese New Year is a huge celebration for Chinese-Americans as well, and there are tons of traditions that help ring in the festival. Alongside gifts, parties, and decorations, special "lucky" foods are presented to bring prosperity in the upcoming year, like coin-shaped dumplings, long noodles to represent longevity, and oranges, which are a Chinese symbol of luck and good fortune.

Since food is so central to the celebration, a Chinese-inspired dinner is a great way for you and your family to share in the tradition of our friends and neighbors. China is a very large country with many regions and a long history, which means there are many variations in what is considered traditional.

In a large saute pan or wok, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook until golden brown, stirring the chicken occasionally to cook it evenly on all sides, about 5 minutes. Transfer the cooked chicken to a plate and set aside. Add the garlic, ginger, and green onions to the pan and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the vinegar, sugar, soy sauce, chicken stock or water, and the cornstarch. Mix with a whisk until there are no clumps and set aside.

Add the broccoli to the pan. Add the cornstarch mixture and stir to coat the broccoli. Stir in the chicken, cover the pan with a lid or aluminum foil, and cook on medium-high heat until the broccoli is bright green and cooked through, for 3 to 5 minutes.

CHINESE TAKE-OUT CHICKEN AND BROCCOLI

Makes: 4-6 servings

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 pound boneless, skinless

chicken breast, cut into 1-inch

cubes

2 tablespoons chopped garlic

2 tablespoons chopped ginger

1 bunch green onions, sliced

2 tablespoons cider or rice

vinegar

2 tablespoons sugar

3 tablespoons soy sauce

1 cup chicken stock or water

2 tablespoons cornstarch

4 cups (1 bunch) broccoli florets, broccoli rabe, or broccolini

In a large saute pan or wok, heat the oil over medium heat.

Add the chicken and cook until golden brown, stirring the chicken occasionally to cook it evenly on all sides, about 5 minutes. Transfer the cooked chicken to a plate and set aside.

Add the garlic, ginger, and green onions to the pan and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the vinegar, sugar, soy sauce, chicken stock or water, and the cornstarch.

Mix with a whisk until there are no clumps and set aside.

Add the broccoli to the pan.

Add the cornstarch mixture and stir to coat the broccoli.

Stir in the chicken, cover the pan with a lid or aluminum foil, and cook on medium-high heat until the broccoli is bright green and cooked through, for 3 to 5 minutes.