Stir-Fried Chicken in Hoisin Sauce with Almonds

This was one of my student’s favorite dishes and one that their families requested often.  Since almonds were also one of the seven species of fruits found in Israel and the almond tree was the first to bloom in spring in Israel, the almond was used in recipes to celebrate Arbor Day in Israel, TuB’Shevat.  Enjoy!



1 pound boneless chicken breast

1 Tablespoon cornstarch

1 Tablespoon Cream Sherry

1 Tablespoon soy sauce

4 Tablespoons oil

1 red or green bell pepper cut into 1/2 inch cubes

8 waterchestnuts cut into quarters

1/4 pound fresh mushrooms cut into 1/2 inch cubes

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 Tablespoon hoisin sauce

1/4 cup roasted whole blanched almonds

  1. Cut chicken into 1/2 inch cubes.
  1. Place chicken in a large bowl and sprinkle with cornstarch. Toss lightly to coat evenly. Pour in the sherry and soy sauce and toss again to coat well.
  1. Place the above ingredients as well as the remaining ingredients within easy reach.
  1. Set a 12 inch wok or 10 inch skillet over high heat for 30 seconds. Pour in a Tablespoon of the oil, swirl it about in the pan and heat for another 30 seconds, turning the heat down to moderate if the oil begins to smoke.
  1. Immediately add the diced peppers, water chestnuts, mushrooms and salt, and stir fry briskly for 2 – 3 minutes.
  1. Scoop out the vegetables with a slotted spoon and set them on a plate.
  1. Pour the remaining 3 Tablespoons of oil into the pan, heat almost to the smoking point, and drop in the marinated chicken. Stir fry over high heat for 2 to 3 minutes until the chicken turns white and firm.
  1. Add the hoisin sauce, stir well with the chicken and then add the reserved vegetables. Cook one minute.
  1. Add the almonds. Stir to heat them through and then transfer contents of wok to a heated platter and serve at once.
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