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Chicken Almond (from The Nut Tree Restaurant) Recipe

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1 vote | 9847 views

My favorite entrée at the Nut Tree Restaurant (before it closed in ‘96) near Vacaville CA was Chicken Almond. (The gift shop at The Nut Tree sold the restaurant’s most popular recipes, which is how I came by them.) This makes a good summertime recipe because it’s a one-skillet meal that cooks in a flash and won’t heat up the kitchen. I have stayed fairly close to the original recipe, but did take some liberties that I thought would enhance it, i.e., the original recipe called for French-fried blanched almonds, but I decided browning or toasting them would be better than deep frying. A few other recipe tweaks were made too, but all in all, this is that great Chicken Almond I remember so well! (Oh yeah, cashews would make a wonderful sub for the almonds!)

Prep time:
Cook time:
Servings: 6
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Ingredients

Cost per serving $2.43 view details
  • 3 ounces whole almonds, blanched or natural
  • 2 ½ tablespoons peanut oil, divided (I used Asian Stir Fry oil)
  • 1 ½ pounds boneless/skinless chicken breasts, cut into 3/4 inch cubes
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups coarsely chopped celery
  • 2 cups coarsely chopped onions
  • 1 8-ounce can bamboo shoots, drained & diced (reserve juice, see note*)
  • 1 8-ounce can sliced water chestnuts, drained (reserve juice, see note*)
  • 1/3 cup water*
  • 8 ounces sugar peas (about 2 cups)
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce (I used reduced-sodium)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 3 to 4 cups hot cooked rice (I used brown rice)
  • NOTE: If preferred, measure reserved bamboo shoots and/or water chestnut juice to replace the 1/3 cup water

Directions

  1. Heat 1 ½ teaspoons of the oil in large skillet over medium low heat. Add almonds and cook, stirring occasionally until lightly browned (or toast them instead without oil.) Remove almonds from pan and set aside.
  2. Increase heat to medium or medium-high and add remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to pan. Brown chicken cubes in hot oil and sprinkle with the kosher salt (add additional oil if needed to prevent sticking.) Add celery, onions, bamboo shoots, water chestnuts and water (or reserved juice.) Cover, reduce heat and cook about 7 minutes.
  3. Scatter sugar peas on top; cover and cook 5 minutes longer.
  4. Stir together soy sauce, sugar and cornstarch; add to skillet stirring until slightly thickened and glazed, about 1 minute.
  5. Spoon into serving dish and sprinkle with toasted almonds. Serve with cooked rice and additional soy sauce as desired.
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Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving %DV
Serving Size 352g
Recipe makes 6 servings
Calories 404  
Calories from Fat 88 22%
Total Fat 10.15g 13%
Saturated Fat 1.58g 6%
Trans Fat 0.02g  
Cholesterol 43mg 14%
Sodium 820mg 34%
Potassium 678mg 19%
Total Carbs 52.92g 14%
Dietary Fiber 3.5g 12%
Sugars 5.33g 4%
Protein 24.46g 39%

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Comments

  • judee
    July 29, 2013
    What an interesting recipe. It's great to get recipes from restaurants
    • ShaleeDP
      July 25, 2013
      Very nice. I like my chicken with veggies too.
      • Salad Foodie
        July 23, 2013
        Thanks for your comment, Bob. I lived in Sacramento in the 70's and it was a favorite rest stop on the way to San Fran. Fondly I remember the huge wooden giraffe rocking chairs, railroad rides, the aviary in the restaurant, the nut breads, and...Chicken Almond! I will get a few more Nut Tree recipes up as occasions to prepare them come along. (No, I've never had an opportunity to visit the new shopping mall, Nut Tree Family Park and Village. But it wouldn't be the same as my memories, and as the saying goes, "you can never go back, it's not the same.")
        • Bob Vincent
          July 23, 2013
          Hi Salad Foodie:
          Living in the Bay Area for most of my adult years I remember passing by and eating at the Nut Tree Restaurant many times. You probably are aware its old location is now a large shopping mall. Since I usually Wok stir fry once a week this will make a nice addition to recipes using boneless chicken breasts. Thanks for sharing. I have added it to my Try Soon folder.
          Best Regards,
          Bob

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