Chinese Chicken Balls With Sweet and Sour Sauce
- SWEET AND SOUR SAUCE
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1/3 cup white vinegar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
- 1 cup white sugar (can reduce a 2-3 tablespoons for a less sweeter taste)
- 3/4 cup cold water (or can use unsweetened pineapple juice or half each, I prefer the pineapple juice)
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch (for a thinner sauce reduce to 2 tablespoons, if you want an very thick sauce use 4 tablespoons)
- CHICKEN BALL BATTER
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (garlic lovers add 1 teaspoon)
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 1/3 cups cold water (if you are reducing to half a recipe use 1/2 cup plus 2-1/2 tablespoons water)
- 1 -2 teaspoon sesame oil (optional but good to add)
- oil (for frying)
- 8 chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
- seasoning salt (optional)
To make the sweet and sour sauce sauce; in a saucepan combine the first 5 ingredients until combined. In a cup or bowl whisk the cold water or pineapple juice with cornstarch until smooth and well blended, then whisk vigorously into the ketchup mixture; bring to a boil stirring or whisking constantly over medium-high heat until bubbly.
Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue simmering and mixing until thickened (be patient the sauce takes a few minutes to thicken up) remove from heat and allow to sit at room temperature while making the chicken balls or you may cool to room temperature then refrigerate until ready to use (I prefer the sauce at room temperature).
To make the chicken balls: in a large bowl combine flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, garlic powder; add in water and sesame oil; whisk vigorously until smooth.
Add in chicken pieces; using clean handsand mix until well coated. Heat oil in a deep-fryer or Dutch oven to 375 degrees. Carefully dip the battered chicken pieces in hot oil and fry until golden brown (about 3-4 minutes).
Remove to a paper towel. Sprinkle with seasoning salt immediately after frying if desired. Serve immediately with sweet and sour sauce.