Gary's Strange Flavored Chicken

gary bannon


We have a neighborhood Chinese restaurant that we love and have been going to for years. One of our favorite takeout meals was a Szechuan style dish called Strange Flavored Chicken. We still think they offer the best Chinese food around, but they have taken that dish off the menu.
I had never attempted Chinese food at home but started craving that particular dish. After trial and error this is what I have come up with, and I think it's pretty good. ( If you don't like very spicy Szechuan you might want to cut down on the ginger and Chilies.)

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20 Min
10 Min


1 Tbsp
vegetable oil
1 Tbsp
sesame oil
2 Tbsp
chinese five spice powder
2 lb
boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
4 oz
fresh snow peas (trimmed
2 oz
shiitake mushrooms
2 small
red chilies
carrots thinly julienned
red bell pepper julienned
1 medium
onion julienned
8 oz can sliced water chestnuts, drained
1 c
chicken broth
1/4 c
hoisin sauce
1 Tbsp
chinese hot mustard
1 Tbsp
soy sauce
2 Tbsp
corn starch
2 tsp
finely grated fresh ginger

How to Make Gary's Strange Flavored Chicken


  • 1Gather all your ingredients and prep. everything ahead of time. Once you start cooking it will go quick and easy that way.
  • 2In a large skillet or wok, heat the oils over medium-high heat
  • 3Liberally season chicken with the Chinese five spice.
  • 4In a small bowl, combine broth, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, Chinese hot mustard, ginger, and cornstarch. Set aside.

    * Note. I often use dried shiitake mushrooms for this dish. when I do I save the water I use to reconstitute them and then add a chicken bouillon cube to it and this is what I use for the broth.
  • 5Add the chicken to the hot skillet and cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until lightly browned.
  • 6Add the snow peas, mushrooms, chilies, carrots ,bell pepper, and onion and cook an additional 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in the water chestnuts.
  • 7Add the sauce mixture to the skillet and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium to medium-low, and simmer for 4 to 5 minutes, or until sauce thickens.
  • 8* Note: This dish goes great over hot cooked rice or rice noodles.

Printable Recipe Card

About Gary's Strange Flavored Chicken

Course/Dish: Chicken
Main Ingredient: Chicken
Regional Style: Chinese