I know you are going to love this because….hello….this recipe only takes a few minutes to throw together. What’s better than that on a weeknight or even a quick last minute meal for guests? Basically nothing.
I’ve been sticking to the theme of “better than takeout” lately. Why? Well, it THIS IS better than takeout and the key to this is that you know exactly what ingredients you’re putting into the dish. Another bonus with this recipe is that it’s a fairly healthy meal. I used fresh ingredients and just ONE skillet which in my opinion is always a WIN WIN. Why? You just need to wash one pan. Who needs more than one pan anyways?
Oh, and I realize I told you that this dish takes a few minutes to make but you if you’re not stuck for time, take the opportunity to marinate these prawns in the sauce for at least an hour or even overnight. Not 100% necessary, but a good idea to let the flavours of the sauce seep into the prawns for extra flavour. No prawns at the market? Feel free to sub in a good size shrimp. I’ve made this recipe with jumbo black tigers and it’s just as delish.
What might be my favorite of all is this little part: wonderful caramelized bits of sauce stick to the pan and to the edges of the shrimp. Yum factor is a +10 here, you’ll see for yourself when you take your first bite.
Now, here’s a question (you know I always like asking you things, so just go with it). Is it GENERAL TSO or GENERAL TAO?
Believe it or not, it doesn’t really matter because anyway you say it this dish is sticky, sweet and good to eat.
The good ol’ General is literally one of the most popular menu items in a Chinese restaurant. Making your own version at home is as simple as this – whip up the sauce, stir fry the shrimp, cook it up and BOOM, BANG, DONE, you’ve got a 10 minute dinner!
How to make this meal even healthier? Here’s some suggestions:
- Serve General Tso Shrimp over a bed of quinoa or brown rice
- Steam up a bunch of veggies such as broccoli, zucchini, carrots or bell peppers then lightly stir fry them with a bit of soy sauce as a side dish for the General
- A big healthy bowl of salad greens
- Spiralized vegetables such as zucchini or squash noodles – a perfect, healthy substitute for the standard greasy lo mein noodle.
Busy nights don’t have to end up with a BLAH dinner. No matter how you pronounce it, the General is waiting.
- ½ cup soup stock or water (I used chicken stock)
- ¼ teaspoon chili pepper flakes
- ¼ cup dark brown sugar, (not packed)
- 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
- 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 3 tablespoons ketchup
- 2 tablespoon light soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon freshly minced ginger
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 8 - 12 fresh prawns or extra large black tiger shrimp, rinsed, shelled and deveined
- OPTIONAL GARNISHES
- chopped chives, parsley, crushed peanuts, pickled red onion
- In a small bowl whisk together stock, chili flakes, brown sugar, hoisin sauce, oyster sauce, rice vinegar, ketchup, soy sauce and cornstarch. At this point, you can add the shrimp and marinate it for an hour or overnight or proceed without marinating. It's great either way.
- In a large skillet or wok over medium high heat, add sesame oil and heat for 30 seconds. Add garlic and ginger, stir fry for 1 minute stirring constantly until just fragrant. Be careful not to burn the garlic. Add shrimp and cook for 2 minutes. Whisk remaining sauce again and pour into skillet or wok. Turn heat to high and stir fry the shrimp and sauce until the mixture comes to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Cook 2 - 3 minutes until sauce is nice and thick and shrimp is cooked through. Garnish as desired. Serve with rice or veggies.