Monday, 8 October 2012

Sweet and Sour Chicken

It's one of those times where I wish I didn't need to sleep so much; I have so much to do and the days just aren't feeling long enough. As it gets colder I feel even more like burying myself in oversized jumpers and getting comfy in front of the tv with a big mug of tea - however my degree is kinda of getting in the way of those plans. It's final year though and amazingly I have been really enjoying uni so far, so I have no choice but to just get on with it. 

Of course this means making sure I'm full of delicious hot food full of healthy veg (especially because of all the bugs going around recently!). Which brings me onto the recipe below. 

I always want to try and learn how to make my favourite dishes. This has meant delving into numerous cookbooks in search of a sweet and sour recipe that I can shut my eyes and just for a moment maybe think I got this from a takeaway or restaurant. 

I think I'm there with this.

Obviously it had to be easy (and student budget friendly!) to put together. This uses mainly storecupboard ingredients with just a couple of fresh vegetables and chicken thrown in, so whenever I fancy this it's not long before I'm sat down in front of a fluffy pile of rice topped with steaming hot sauce.

Cheap, easy and healthy! And most importantly, warm and filling enough to get me through the ever-accumulating book chapters and journal articles that keep piling up!

Feel free to swap the chicken for pork, or extra vegetables can be easily added for a veggie version. This also goes well mixed in with some cooked noodles and served with chinese nibbles on the side.

Sweet & Sour Chicken

Sweet and Sour Chicken
This sweet, mildly spicy sauce is quick and easy to make and full of delicious flavours, and goes perfectly with either chicken or pork. 

Serves 2


  • Oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • Small piece of ginger, chopped finely
  • 1 tsp chilli sauce
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1-2 chicken breasts, cut into equal sized pieces
  • 1 red or yellow pepper, chopped
  • 1 432g tin of pineapple rings in juice, rings chopped into eighths and juice reserved
  • 2-3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 heaped tsp tomato puree
  • 1/2 tsp Chinese 5 spice powder
  • 1 level tsp cornflour (optional)
  • Boiled rice or egg fried rice, to serve


  1. Heat oil in a wok. Add garlic, ginger, chilli sauce and onion and cook for 2-3 minutes until softened. 
  2. Add the chicken and a couple of tablespoons of the reserved pineapple juice to the wok, and cook through. 
  3. Add the pepper and pineapple pieces and continue cooking for a further 2 minutes or so.
  4. While the pepper and pineapple is cooking, make the sauce. Add the soy sauce, tomato puree, 5 spice and the rest of the pineapple juice to a bowl. Stir until evenly mixed. 
  5. Add the sauce to the wok and let it bubble for a few minutes until thickened. If necessary, add a teaspoon of cornflour and heat through until the sauce is thickened to your liking. 
  6. Serve over plain or egg fried rice.

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