Martha Stewart and I are in a relationship, and it’s complicated. I first met Martha in 1993, when I received this cookbook shown below as one of my bridal shower gifts. Just look at young Martha with her Dorthy Hamill haircut and Mom Jeans! Still several years away from her world domination, but very confident nonetheless. Martha always seemed to possess a bossy, smug righteousness which I couldn’t help but admire. Back in the day, I wanted to be the Best at Everything, and Martha was just the gal to show me how to get there.
But I felt like sometimes she…how can I put this?…made things deliberately complicated for no good reason. She didn’t respect my time. She didn’t respect my budget. Sometimes Martha made me cry. And so I might have turned on her once or twice throughout the years. I may have said some unkind things out of anger or frustration. I’m sorry, Martha. I still do admire you!
When my friend Deana shared this recipe, I admit I was hesitant before I even read it. A Martha version of Chinese food? So do I have to brew my own soy sauce first? But, no, Deana insisted it was really quite easy and delicious. Being
lazy pressed for time like me, I trusted her and gave it a try.
The real test, of course, was my kids. They are big fans of transfatty, MSG-laden, sodium soaked Chinese restaurant sesame chicken, and this seemed almost healthy in comparison. I chose to use peanut oil for this, but aside from that, I stuck to the recipe exactly as written. And the kids loved it!
Lighter Sesame Chicken by Martha Stewart
Original Recipe Here
3/4 cup brown rice
3 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 garlic clove, finely chopped or crushed with a garlic press
2 large egg whites
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 2-inch chunks
Coarse salt and ground pepper
2 tablespoons vegetable oil, such as safflower
4 scallions, thinly sliced
1 1/2 pounds broccoli, cut into large florets, stems peeled and thinly sliced
Place a steamer basket in a large saucepan, and fill with 1 inch water; set aside for broccoli. Cook rice according to package instructions.
Meanwhile, make sauce: In a small bowl, combine honey, sesame seeds, soy sauce, and garlic; set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together egg whites and cornstarch. Add chicken; season with salt and pepper, and toss to coat.
In a large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high. Add half the chicken; cook, turning occasionally, until golden and opaque throughout, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a plate; repeat with remaining tablespoon oil and chicken. Return all the chicken to skillet; add reserved sauce and scallions, and toss to coat.
Meanwhile, place saucepan with steamer basket over high heat; bring water to a boil. Add broccoli, and cook until crisp-tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Serve sesame chicken with broccoli and rice.