chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
ginger, freshly minced
1ADVANCE PREPARATION: Dip each chicken breast in water and then gently flatten with a meat pounder or rolling pin until the breast increases in size by about one-third; set aside.
2Toast the almonds in a 325 oven until light golden, then set aside.
3Mince the chives and set aside.
4Combine the garlic and ginger and set aside.
5In a small bowl combine the sauce ingredients and mix well.
6LAST-MINUTE COOKING: Combine the cornstarch with an equal amount of cold water.
7Preheat the oven to warm.
8Place a small noncorrosive skillet or saucepan over medium heat; add 1 tablespoon cooking oil and then garlic and ginger - Saute briefly then add the sauce.
9Bring to a low boil and reduce the heat to simmer.
10Sprinkle the chicken on both sides with a little salt and pepper; dust with flour, shaking off any excess.
11Place a 12-inch skillet over high heat; when hot, add the butter and remaining 3 tablespoons of oil.
12When the butter bubbles, pan-fry 3 or 4 chicken pieces at a time; cook for about 1 minute on each side.
13The chicken is done when the meat turns color and feels firm to the touch (do not overcook).
14Transfer the chicken to a heated platter or dinner plates and keep warm in the oven while you cook the remaining chicken.
15Bring the sauce back to a low boil and stir in a little of the cornstarch mixture to lightly thicken it; spoon the sauce over the chicken.
16Sprinkle the almonds and chives on top, then serve at once.