This easy recipe is made with a spicy, flavorful gochujang sauce cooked with chicken. Use this sauce over pork chops or shrimp as well. Braising refers to the method of cooking in a tightly covered Dutch oven with a little liquid in the oven or it can be done on the stovetop at a low temperature over a long period of time. This method of cooking is great for tougher cuts of meat as it transforms the meat, allowing the muscles to break down, leaving it incredibly tender.
Gochujang is a Korean fermented chili paste that adds some sweet and savory heat to any dish. Mixed with soy sauce, rice vinegar and a bit of chicken stock, it becomes the braising liquid for the chicken, which is then spooned over the meat as a flavorful sauce.
These days it can be found in the Asian section of most grocery stores. I like to keep my fridge stocked with gochujang. Since it’s fermented it lasts for a fairly long time.
I use a combination of bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs as well as skin-on chicken drumsticks in this recipe. Other cuts of meat can be substituted in for this recipe. Try using chicken breasts, just thighs or boneless, skinless chicken thighs. A braise is a good way to break down tougher cuts of meat (which also tend to be cheaper). As a result it transforms them into a tender and succulent entrée.
Chicken stock is typically made from chicken bones as well as aromatics and vegetables while chicken broth is made with the meat. How does that affect their flavor? Chicken stock has a much richer, more robust flavor which comes from the collagen released from the simmering bones. On the other hand, chicken broth is much more mellow in flavor. I typically use chicken stock when cooking. In a pinch the chicken stock can be substituted with water though it takes away some of the flavor.
This Korean fermented chili paste adds umami flavor and some spice to this chicken. I prefer to look for brands that don’t include corn syrup.
I use reduced sodium soy sauce so that I can control the amount of salt in the recipe.
Rice vinegar is made through the process of fermenting rice. It has a much more mellow, less acidic flavor than other vinegars.
The honey adds a natural sweetness to offset the salty, savory flavors of the rice vinegar, soy sauce and gochujang to create a balanced sauce.
I garnish the braised chicken with thinly sliced green onions to add a bit of color and fresh mellow onion flavor.
I always use fresh cloves of garlic, the pre-minced jars of garlic don’t taste the same. It loses a lot of the powerful garlic flavor when it’s jarred. This is because it has been soaked in water for a long period of time. Peeling garlic only takes a bit.
I like the flavor of toasted sesame seeds over un-toasted. They are more of a garnish than used to flavor the recipe. If you don’t have toasted sesame seeds simply add them to a nonstick sauté pan and cook, stirring constantly, until the seeds turn a uniform golden brown color. Immediately remove them to a bowl to cool.
This herb has a complex citrusy flavor that adds both color and flavor as a garnish to the gochujang chicken.
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I’m excited to make this tonight, just wondering if there are any instructions for the garlic besides removing the top of the head?
No, you just add the garlic to the pot – it’s meant to infuse the broth with flavor and then you can just discard when you’re done cooking the chicken (it will soften but the cloves will still be encased in the paper) or leave it in the broth and spoon the broth from around it. If you prefer you can chop all the cloves of garlic, this is just easier because you get the flavor without having to do as much work! Hope you enjoy the recipe!
Love everything that includes lots of garlic. But this one is gorgeous! I’m also trying to switch to a healthier lifestyle and started to mine for healthy recipes like yours. Also, I’m training with SportMe <a href="https://apps.apple.com/bm/app/sportme-cross-trainer-coach/id1482627406">home workout</a> app, and I managed to get rid of some pounds. Your blog posts are super inspiring for me in this phase, thanks!
Looks amazing, and anything with cilantro can’t go wrong 😀
Thank you!! I agree!!