Most people who have come across “egg foo yong” know it as a Chinese omelet with or without meat or seafood, but most often with vegetables. But egg foo yong isn’t a folded omelet, Western style. It is deep-dried omelet. In this version executed by my daughter, Alex, seasoned boneless chicken cubes were added to make chicken foo yong.
Deep-fried omelet? Seriously? Oh, yes. You won’t get the ideal crispiness unless you deep fry this chicken foo yong. Won’t that make the chicken foo yong terribly greasy? Not if the temperature of the oil is correct and cooking time is minimal.
Based on a recipe from The Woks of Life.
Alex's Chicken Foo Yong
For the gravy:
Cut the chicken fillets into half-inch cubes. Place in a bowl. Add the soy sauce, one teaspoon cornstarch and pepper. Mix well and set aside.
Make the gravy. In a sauce pan, heat a tablespoon of cooking oil. Add the paprika, turmeric, onion and garlic powders. Cook over medium heat until aromatic.
Mix together the cornstarch, soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame seed oil and chicken bone broth. Pour into the pan, mixing as you pour. Cook for five minutes until thickened and clear, and no starch-y sensation sticks to the tongue. Set the gravy aside.
Heat a tablespoon of cooking oil in a wok or frying pan. Fry the marinated chicken cubes until lightly browned. Set aside.
Pour the rest of the cooking oil into the wok or frying pan and start heating it. Depending on the size and shape of your pan, you may need more than four cups of oil. Ideally, the oil should be at least three inches deep.
In a bowl, stir together the chopped onion, mung bean sprouts, eggs, sesame seed oil, scallions and chicken.
When fine wisps of smoke start to float on the surface of the oil (350F if you're using a thermometer), it is time to fry. Note that correct temperature is essential. Using an oversized spoon or a curved spatula, scoop the chicken-egg mixture and slide into the hot oil. Fry until browned and crisp. Scoop out and drain on paper towels. Repeat until all the chicken-egg mixture has been cooked.
To serve: Place the chicken foo yong on a plate (with rice on the side, if you like), smother with gravy and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.