Kind of Korean Chicken Risotto with Sambal

In Main Dish by TinaLeave a Comment

I have tried so many variations of this dish. I got the idea from Alexandra’s Kitchen, who got the recipe from Canal House Cooking Volume No. 6. According to Alexandra, the original recipe uses a good amount of butter and only salt and black pepper for seasoning. I gotta be honest, I’m sure the original way is delicious but I have this mental problem where I like to make things complicated. I rarely leave things alone–if it looks simple, instinctively, my brain is like: oh hey, wait, let me add this and change that around and stop right now and go do that other thing and then come back and then.. what was I doing again? Why did I take out the doenjang? This is when I have to physically remove myself from the situation and take a breather.

Well, this was definitely one of those times. I’ve used different rice, added wine, swiss chard, mushrooms, peas and carrots. I tried to make it completely Korean (as opposed to kind-of-Korean, which is this recipe) by adding the typical Korean ingredients of soy sauce, red pepper powder, sesame oil, and a good amount of minced garlic. I’ve swapped out the celery completely with napa cabbage only. On a whim, since I had the ingredients laying out, I made a sort of sambal with the ginger, jalapeno, garlic, and fish sauce.

I have to say most the renditions I’ve made came out really good. Only 1 was a complete loser (I added the Korean seasoning to the original recipe which contains a lot of butter. In theory: butter + red pepper powder + soy sauce + garlic = yummy! But no, it’s not yummy, It’s very off-putting and way too greasy. It’s probably the chicken.)

Once I found a potential winner, I tweaked it and this recipe is the final result. Okay, no, it’s probably not final because when I make this again, I’m sure I’ll change something. But maybe that’s the beauty of this recipe. You can change it around and it’ll turn out alright 99% of the time. Those are some pretty good odds.

The main thing to take away from the recipe is the technique rather than the ingredients. The way I do it here has a few more steps because I’m using Arborio rice and making a kind-of-risotto. Check out the original recipe at Alexandra’s Kitchen for the easy-to-follow steps. Continue reading on if you are a fellow complicater-of-things.

The first batch of sambal I used one green and one red jalapeno because that’s what I had. For a prettier color, go with all red peppers. Taste-wise, it’s the same.

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