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Cinta Dapur » Dinner, Main course » Kung Pow Chicken

Kung Pow Chicken

I was watching an old Chinese Kung Fu film on TV  the other day and it had the English voice over that reminded me of the film Kung Pow. This movie is absolutely hilarious, if you haven’t watched it before, I strongly recommend that you do.

So Chinese Kung Fu film led to Kung Pow the movie. Kung Pow the movie led to Kung Pow Chicken. See how my mind works? I was first introduced to the dish Kung Pow chicken during kmy undergraduate years in Australia, when my then girlfriend mentioned that it was one of her speciality. Needless to say, I was not going to let her get away with that claim without trying it.

Overtime, the recipe evolved through little experiences I have gathered along the way and with most recent secret ingredient, the Szechuan peppercorn. Put enough of this in your dish, it will definitely numb your tongue for a good few minutes.
Kung Pow chicken

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  • 250g boneless chicken thigh (you can use chicken breast if you prefer) chopped into small chunks
  • 2 tps of Szechuan peppercords
  • 2 tps of corn flour
  • Raw peanut soaked in water overnight. (You can use unsalted roasted peanuts if you like, but i’m not really a fan)
  • 6 dried chilli, crushed (use less if you don’t handle spiciness well – 6 dried chilli can be quite a kick)
  • half cup water
  • 2 tbs of soya sauce
  • 1 tbs oyster sauce
  • 2 tps of sesame oil
  • 2 tbs of Chinese Rice Wine (sherry can be used as substitute)
  • 2 tps of fish oil (not crucial but nice to have if you have some lying around)
  • 2 cloves garlic – chopped roughly


  • Marinade chicken with corn flour, sesame oil, soya sauce, oyster sauce, Chinese rice wine, fish oil in a mixer and let it rest for a good 15-30 minutess. The chicken should appear just slightly slippery, this will help give the chicken a smooth texture when cooked..
  • Get your wok and oil piping hot
  • Put in garlic and stir it a little to unlock the pungent aroma of the garlic
  • Add in the marinated chicken and brown it (if your wok is not hot, the chicken with corn flour will just stick to the base of the wok)
  • Add in peanut and dried chilli and stir
  • Add half cup water and immediately cover with lid for a good 2-3 mins. If your wok is hot, adding water will create steam and covering with lid builds the pressure and heat up in the wok and will cook the meat all round whilst retaining the moisture of the meat.
  • Plate the dish and garnish with coriander.

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Cinta Dapur is authored by Ivan Cho, who currently works as a Project Manager in the Digital Advertising arena in London. He is also a freelance photographer and a hobbyist food photographer

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