Saturday, July 21, 2012

Korean Grilled Chicken

I am writing this as I sit in a chaise lounge in our backyard taking in one of the less hot and humid evenings. I tend to take for granted how nice it can be here, even in the summer and just taking a few minutes to sit outside and relax, read or write this blog post can make such a difference in the day or night. Now onto the food! I am not sure what makes this chicken Korean but it definitely has Asian flavors in the marinade. I couldn't find the special Korean malt syrup the recipe called for so I added a tiny bit of honey for the texture and sweetness. Since this recipe uses chicken thighs and it is marinated beforehand it keeps the meat nice and juicy, not dried out like boneless, skinless chicken breasts can get. You can definitely taste the saltiness from the soy sauce and sweetness from the sugar and honey with a hint of ginger. Serve with your favorite vegetable, we had broccoli and shared a sweet potato instead of traditional rice. Hope you have a great weekend and hopefully can grill up some of this chicken!

Korean Grilled Chicken
Serves: 6

3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
6 medium garlic cloves, smashed
3 medium scallions, ends trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 (4-inch) piece ginger, cut into ¼ inch coins
3/4 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup Korean malt syrup or honey
6 Tablespoons granulated sugar
3 Tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1 ½ teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1 Tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
Vegetable oil, for prepping the grill


1. Lay the chicken in a single layer on a cutting board. Cover with plastic wrap and, using a meat mallet or rolling pin, evenly pound to a 1/2-inch thickness.

2. Place everything except the chicken and the sesame seeds in a large, nonreactive dish or a re-sealable plastic bag and mix until evenly combined. Add the chicken and turn to coat evenly. Cover and place in the bottom of the refrigerator to marinate for 2 hours.

3. Heat a gas or charcoal grill to high (about 400°F) and rub the grill with a towel dipped in vegetable oil. Remove the chicken from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature while the grill heats up, at least 20 minutes.

4. Remove the chicken from the marinade and let any excess drip off. Place the chicken on the grill and cook uncovered, turning rarely, until it’s charred and the juices are running clear, about 10 minutes total. When ready to serve, garnish with the sesame seeds.

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