L1020722 721x541 - Orange Zucchini in the Style of Orange Chicken
Entrees, Side Dish, Vegan

Orange Zucchini in the Style of Orange Chicken

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I honestly had no idea what to do with these zucchini.  I still had a ton of turkey soup in my fridge from the leftover Friendsgiving turkeys so soup was out.  I didn’t want to do a fritter because I’ve been eating a lot of latkes these days thanks to friends who celebrate Hanukkah.  I also wanted to make use of the oranges and that’s when it hit me…. Orange Chicken!  Except I was going to fry the zucchini instead of chicken.   Like I mentioned in the last post, I’m all about the mash ups lately.  I don’t love thick heavy batter so I wanted something a little lighter and found this recipe for the batter that sounded pretty good and then I sort of used this recipe for the sauce but made a bunch of modifications.

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This was one pound of zucchini. They come in all shapes and sizes so just make sure that you cut yours uniformly so that they cook evenly.

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This batter didn’t stay as crispy as I wanted but the zucchini maintained some of their crispness so it worked out.

The batter came out more like a thin tempura, which wasn’t bad, but I did actually want it to be a little thicker and crispier.  Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t bad at all, I am just a pig and wanted more fried stuff.  I put the ingredients for the batter in the freezer because that is what a few of the tempura batter recipes said to do.  It inhibits the gluten from… I dunno… getting all gluteny.  I guess it makes a thinner batter and that’s what I was going for.

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Always zest BEFORE juicing!! Omg, I wish I didn’t forget this as often as I do!

The orange sauce was freaking amazing.  I definitely spooned some of the extra straight into my mouth.  And guess what, it’s even better on those fried zucchini.  SO GOOD!!  I definitely gave myself a hug and a kiss for this one.

Delightful Recipe

INGREDIENTS

  • 5 small zucchini or 1 lb of zucchini, cut into one inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon dry sherry
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup of all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup of corn starch
  • 1/2 cup white rum
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons corn starch
  • 1/2 cup of orange juice (2 oranges) and zest from 1 orange (you can take zest from second orange for garnish)
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dry sherry
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • 1 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 2 teaspoons of grated ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • 5 scallions, sliced
  • Enough veggie oil to fry in (1 liter)
  • Cut the zucchini in half and then cut them on the bias into 1 inch slices.  In a small bowl combine 1 teaspoon of each: sherry, vinegar and soy.  Toss the zucchini in the mixture and set aside to marinate.
  • Sift together the 1/2 cup of cornstarch, flour and baking powder.  Mix water and rum in another bowl and set aside.  Put both bowls in the freezer.
  • Dissolve the 2 teaspoons of corn starch in the orange juice and set aside.
  • In another small bowl combine the soy sauce, orange zest, sherry and rice vinegar and set aside.
  • In a frying pan, heat vegetable oil over medium high heat and add the garlic, ginger and crushed red pepper.  Cook for 30 seconds or until fragrant and then add the soy mixture and 2 Tablespoons of sugar until the sugar is dissolved.
  • Stir the corn starch and orange juice mixture and then pour into the frying pan.  Stir until beginning to thicken.  Add more water to thin the sauce out if it gets to thick.  Set sauce aside.
  • Pour oil into a cast iron pot and fill with 2 inches of oil.  Heat the oil to 350 degrees F.
  • While oil is heating, take the flour and water mixture out of the freezer and combine.  Toss zucchini in the batter and make sure they are all coated.
  • When the oil is hot enough, drop the zucchini into the oil and fry for a minute or two or until they are brown.  Pull them out with a slotted spoon, spatula or a spider.  Be careful!  Oil is super hot!!
  • Set them to drain on a cookie sheet.
  • Warm the orange sauce back up and then toss in the zucchini to coat.
  • Serve immediately topped with extra orange zest and scallions.

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