And then I came across this recipe in Saveur. This is a fairly standard, simple Chinese dish that is easily altered - you can double it or halve it, you can add more or less soy sauce/oyster sauce/etc and you can make it spicy or mild.
Chinese chicken with celery and leeks (jirou chao qincai) - serves 2-4 as a main dish
- 2 tsp cornstarch
- 1 egg white
- 2 chicken breasts (boneless, skinless) - chicken thigh meat can also be used - freeze the chicken for about 20 minutes and cut into 1/8"-thick strips
- 2-3 tbsp canola oil
- 1 1/2" piece of ginger, peeled and finely julienned
- 2-3 leeks, halved crosswise and julienned - separate the bottom (white) and top (green) parts
- 5 ribs celery, cut diagonally into 1/8-1/4"-thick slices
- 2-3 tbsp soy sauce
- A dash of oyster sauce (probably about 2-3 tbsp)
- Lightly whisk the cornstarch into the egg white. Coat the chicken strips in the mixture and allow them to sit for 10-20 minutes.
- Heat oil in the wok on high heat until the wok is just smoking. Add the chicken and "blanche" - cook it until the outside is white, but the inside is not fully cooked. Put the chicken on a plate and set it aside.
- Put the wok back on the heat and add a little extra oil. Add the ginger and white part of the leeks and cook for about 30 second to 1 minute. The ginger will become fragrant.
- Add the celery and the green part of the leeks. Cook for about one or two minutes.
- Add the chicken and cook for a few minutes until the chicken is fully cooked. While the wok is still on the burner, add the soy sauce and oyster sauce to taste.
- Serve with white rice.