Stir-Fried Chicken With Celery and Leeks
What distinguishes this stir-fry from the same-old same-old is the crisp-silky combination of celery and leeks. Usually we might be inclined to pick just one or the other, but the mix of the two is really nice.
2 tablespoons chopped fresh ginger
1 large leek, trimmed, chopped, and well rinsed
1 pound celery (leaves included), sliced diagonally into 1 ⁄ 2-inch pieces
3 tablespoons good-quality vegetable oil
1 1 ⁄ 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon fish sauce (or soy sauce), or to taste
1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
1. Have the ginger, leek, and celery ready by the stove. Put a large skillet over high heat. When it’s hot, add 2 tablespoons oil and swirl the pan.
2. Add half the chicken pieces, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and cook undisturbed until they release easily, about 3 minutes. Stir once with a spatula. Let the chicken sizzle for another minute or 2, again undisturbed, then cook, stirring occasionally, until it’s no longer pink and is crisp in places, another 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate, add the remaining tablespoon oil to the pan, and repeat with the remaining chicken.
3. Return the pan to medium-high heat. Add the ginger and leek and cook, stirring constantly, for 30 seconds. Add the celery, sprinkle with salt, and cook, still stirring until it’s crisp-tender, 1 to 2 minutes. Return the chicken and any juices to
the pan, along with 1 ⁄ 4 cup water and the fish sauce. Continue to cook until everything is coated and heated through, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat, drizzle with the sesame oil, and stir. Taste and adjust the seasoning, adding more fish or soy sauce, and serve.