Making Dak-Kang-Jung (닭강정) / Korean Crispy Chicken with Sweet & Spicy Sauce
This is probably one of the easiest and fuss-free food (aside from the kimchi, but that doesn’t really count because there isn’t really any cooking involved) in the list of Hansiks. Dak Kang Jung, or spicy candied fried chicken, is almost like the Korean version of buffalo wings, sans the hot sauce and bleu cheese accompaniment. I traded the wings for pieces of chicken breast because those were the ones I had on hand. I also halved the recipe and then further halved (therefore quartered) the amount of honey used because I was apprehensive that it might turn out a bit too sweet for my liking. So here it is, with just a tiny bit of trepidation, Super Junior member Kim Jong-Woon (Yesung)’s Hansik - fried pieces of chicken coated in sweet and spicy glaze/sauce.
[1/4 cup flour + 1/4 cup cornstarch or potato starch + 1 large egg + 1 teaspoon salt + 1 teaspoon ground black pepper + 1 teaspoon ground red chili pepper + 4 chicken breasts, cut into strips or pieces + canola oil for frying]
In a large bowl, mix the spices into the chicken until evenly coated. Add in the flour and cornflour and coat all pieces.
Add in the egg and mix into the chicken pieces until they’re all coated in the batter.
Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the chicken pieces in batches.
**The original recipe called for frying the pieces twice - 15 minutes for the first fry and about 10 minutes for the second.
Drain the pieces well and set aside.
Sweet & Spicy Glaze:
[1/2 cup water + a 7 cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced + 1 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce + 1/2 cup packed brown sugar + 3 tablespoons rice vinegar + 1/4 cup light corn syrup or honey]
In a large pot or wok, bring to a boil the water, ginger, soy sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, and corn or rice syrup.
Let cook until the mixture becomes syrupy and thick, and starts to foam. It should be about as thick as honey.
[fried chicken pieces + sweet & spicy glaze + 2 tablespoon roasted sesame seeds + 1/3 cup roasted peanuts] OPTIONAL: 1/2 tablespoon red chili flakes.
Keep the sauce on medium-low until it’s time to toss in the chicken pieces.
Stir in the cooked chicken, peanuts, sesame seeds, and chili flakes (if using), and toss until completely coated.
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