Bon Appetit publishes a marinade for pork. I use it as a stepping stone. Instead of mirin and sake as the recipe indicates, I use fish sauce. And a ton of garlic and ginger. I also let it marinate overnight. If I'm going to eat chicken, it had better sit in it's marinade for a looong time. But you don't really have to employ the overnight option. A few hours and it's ready to be grilled. I let the chicken sit out of the fridge for an hour before I grill it. As I slide open the lid I have a senior moment. Did I make Korean fried chicken or is it a tandoori marinade?? It's looks identical!!! A whiff of chili reminds me of the contents.
I debate the prospect of grilling outside vs inside. The Weber will result in a solid char and less clean up. The grill pan gives me great grill marks and no mosquito bites. A third option materializes as I spy a saucepan of bacon grease, left over from the BLTs we have for lunch. What wouldn't taste good fried in that stuff!!! I pour off most of the grease, leaving enough to fry the chicken in. A dusting of rice flour gives the chicken a crispy crust. The crust would definitely be different if I use the grill options. A cold soba noodle salad and sauteed bok choy rounds out my fried chicken dinner.
KOREAN FRIED CHICKEN
1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless Chicken Thighs
1/2 cup Gochujang paste
2 tablespoons Garlic paste
1 tablespoon grated Ginger
3 tablespoons Fish sauce
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 cup Rice Flour ( frying option)
4 tablespoons Canola oil if frying
Scant tablespoon Oil if using grill or grill pan
Wash and trim all the fat that's visible. Cut thighs into 2 or 3 pieces.
Mix gochujang, garlic, ginger, fish sauce and salt in a non-reactive bowl.
Add chicken to bowl, stir and coat chicken with marinade.
Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight.
Bring chicken to room temperature when you are ready to grill or fry.
The next step is the frying method.
Spread rice flour on a plate or wooden cutting board.
Heat oil in a nonstick saucepan.
Lightly coat chicken with rice flour and place in hot oil carefully. You can fry up to 5-6 pieces depending on the size of the saucepan.
Let the chicken crust up for 4-5 minutes before you flip to the other side.
Remove chicken and let it drain on a paper towel.
Finish all the chicken pieces this way.
Serve the chicken hot and crusty.
You could easily fry the chicken earlier and reheat it in a 350F oven for 10 minutes before serving.
Outdoor grilling---Start up the gas or charcoal grill. The latter will of course take longer. If you use a gas grill, once the grill is hot, lower heat to medium, switch off the middle burner and grill chicken for 8-9 minutes on on side and 5 minutes on the other. Use the same times for a gas grill.
Indoor grilling--- Place the grill pan over high heat. Start the exhaust fan. Spray with cooking oil spray and arrange chicken on pan. Let chicken cook for 8-9 minutes on one side before turning over the cook the other side for a further 5 minutes.
The chicken is crispy, crunchy and fork tender. The pile diminishes rapidly. Once again I am a reticent poultry convert. Glenn and Rehan enjoy the fried nuggets way more than me. Then again it isn't always about what pleases me. I am just thrilled that the funny sounding chile paste makes my husband and son relish their dinner immensely.