I love a good stir fry. It’s kind of my way of cleaning out the vegetable drawer in the fridge when there are peppers, celery, maybe some carrots or broccoli threatening to expire on me. I can quickly whip up a sauce, find a protein like chicken breasts in the freezer, and start a pot of rice, and voila, dinner is done! When thinking about a stir-fry sauce, I thought about how I could incorporate beer and then my stir fry became a Kung Pao Beer Chicken!
Using a porter for my beer added some coffee, chocolate, and malty sweetness to the sauce. Kung Pao Beer Chicken is packed with flavour, healthy vegetables, and served on a bed of rice for an easy any-night-of-the-week meal!
The porter used in this Kung Pao Beer Chicken is the Inner City Victoria Park Porter. Inner City Brewing is located downtown Calgary. They have a few core beers and then rotating seasonals. You can try these in their taproom, along with a snack that they offer from local vendors! Find out more about Inner City Brewing on their website, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
Inner City’s Victoria Park Porter pours black, clear, with a thin line of lace head. The smell is of coffee right away with notes of dried fruits, burnt caramel. Tasting is close to the nose with a lot of coffee, some creaminess, bready caramel, and toffee maltiness. The mouthfeel is slightly thin and watery, light-bodied, not heavy at all, some slight creaminess and a touch of burnt caramel/toffee lingering. Overall I enjoyed this porter more than most. It is still thinner than the heavy stouts I typically enjoy, but I liked the thinness in this porter, finding it especially suitable for the Kung Pao Beer Chicken.
Kung Pao Beer Chicken
For the Chicken:
- 1 large chicken breast
- 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
- 2 Tbsp. porter beer
- 1 Tbsp. corn starch
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- dash siracha to taste; some like it hot!
For the Sauce
- 1/3 cup porter beer
- 3 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp. hoisin sauce
- 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp. oil coconut, sesame, olive, canola, etc…
- 1 tsp. ground ginger
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- dash siracha to taste; how hot can you handle?
For the Stir Fry
- 2 large bell peppers
- 1 Tbsp. minced garlic
- 1 Tbsp. oil coconut, sesame, olive, canola, etc…
- peanuts for garnish
- green onion for garnish
- cooked rice serve on (or noodles, or no carbs if you are in to that sort of thing)
Whisk together the cornstarch, garlic powder, soy sauce, beer, and siracha in a small bowl. Add chicken to the marinade and toss to coat.
Whisk together the sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
Heat the oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Add the minced garlic, cooking until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the bell peppers, stirring frequently until softened.
Add the chicken and marinade, cooking for about 5 minutes.
Pour in the sauce, reduce heat to maintain a simmer. Cook until the sauce has thickened and the chicken is cooked through for about 10-15 minutes.
Serve over cooked rice, topped with peanuts and green onion
Feel free to add veggies of your choice – celery, onion, broccoli, bok choy, carrots, baby corn, waterchestnuts, etc…