Gochujang is a Korean condiment and ingredient made by fermenting chilis, rice, and soybeans. The end product is a rich, sticky, sweet, and spicy paste that adds heat and tremendous depth of flavor to soups, stews, BBQ, and any number of preparations. I love it, and I’m happy that it’s become a popular enough ingredient in the last few years that you can now find it in many grocery stores.
This recipe uses gochujang as a base for both a marinade for brining the chicken, and in a glaze that creases a sweet, spicy, slightly charred crust that nicely contrasts the tender meat.
We’ll brine the meat for a couple days in a mixture of the pepper paste, additional salt, sugar, a touch of vinegar, and ginger. Then roast it in a hot oven – or even grill it – basting with a sweet and spicy glaze. You can control the spiciness of the dish by choosing mild, medium, or hot Gochujang, or by adding additional gochugaru – Korean chili powder or even simply adding a little cayenne pepper to the final glaze. This recipe calls for bone-in, skin on thighs. It Is possible to use boneless thighs, but you’ll want to adjust the final cooking – use lower temps and shorter cook time – to account for the loss of fat and the protection the skin affords. Without shorter gentler cooking, skinless thighs will dry out.
Gochujang Glazed Chicken ThighsCourse: MainDifficulty: Easy
Sticky, spicy gochujang glazed roasted chicken thighs.
4 bone-in, skin on chicken thighs
1 tbsp gochujang
1 tbsp white sugar
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp minced or microplaned ginger
1 tsp minced or microplaned garlic
- Gochujang Glaze
1 cup hot water
2 tbsp gochujang
2 tbsp white sugar
1 tbsp honey
½ tsp toasted sesame oil
Thinly sliced green onion
Black sesame seeds
- Marinade the Chicken
- Combine gochujang, sugar, salt, vinegar, garlic, and ginger in a non-reactive bowl and whisk to combine well.
- Transfer the marinade to a zip-top plastic bag and add the chicken. Press as much air out of the bag before sealing and move the bag about to completely coat the chicken with marinade.
- Place the chicken in the refrigerator and allow to bine for at least 24 hours and up to 72.
- Prepare the glaze
- Combine all ingredients in a pan over medium heat and mix well. Allow to reduce by 1/3-1/2 until a smooth glaze forms that coats the back of a spoon. Allow to cool slightly before using.
- Cook the chicken
- Preheat your oven (or grill) to 400° F.
- Remove the chicken from the brine, and brush generously with the glaze.
- Bake or grill for 20-30 minutes, frequently basting with glaze, until the chicken is cooked through to the bone or the internal temperature reached 165° F.
- Garnish with thinly sliced green onion and black sesame seeds.
- Serve with steamed short grained rice and Korean style pickles such as napa kimchi or quick cured cucumbers.
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