22 Feb 2016

Soy Garlic Korean Fried Chicken

Hi everyone !
I've been baking a lot these days, which I really love. 
But I actually forgot how I extremely enjoy cooking. It's mind boggling. 
I haven't cooked for SUCH A LONG TIME because mom does all the cooking at home. I know, I know I'm supposed to help her in the kitchen but my kitchen is SO TINY. It's just a small square area with stove infront, an ant-sized prep table on your left and the sink on your right. You basically pivoting around to navigate. So, no. 

Today I got to do everything I love in the kitchen, which includes cutting chicken wings. 
I'm a sucker for KFC - and by this I'm not talking about the one from Kentucky, but the one from Korea ! I first tried this back in Melbourne and it's literally the BEST version of fried chicken I could ever asked for, I like to pair mine with Soju (but a lot of people actually prefer beer). 

This fried chicken has a thick, sticky, sweet & savoury - with a little bit of heat - coating all over their remarkably crunchy exterior that comes from double frying method. woot woot.

I adapted the recipe from the fabulous Maangchi. Her website and Youtube channel are basically the holy bible of Korean cooking. I have tried several dishes from her website and they're all awesome! 
Mangchi has several Korean fried chicken recipes on her website. There's the one with the red gochujang sauce and even 2 versions of her soy garlic one. Since there's two recipes for the soy garlic chicken, I mixed & tweaked a little bit of both recipes and it worked well! Here you go!

Soy Garlic Korean Fried Chicken
Adapted from Maangchi Korean Kitchen
Makes : 4-5 portions (30 pcs in total)

  • 1 kg (15 pcs) chicken wings (washed, drained)
  • 1 1/2 cup corn starch
  • 1/2 cup rice flour
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground white pepper
  • 4 cloves of garlic , minced
  • 3-4 birds  eye chillies, sliced thinly
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • Lots of cooking oil - Mangchi uses 4 cups (for frying & a little bit for the sauce)

Chicken coated in flour
1. Prep the chicken. Cut the tip of the washed chicken wings and then cut the wings into two (seperate in the middle joint between the drumstick shaped meat & the wing shaped area), set aside. 
2. In a large shallow bowl, mix together corn starch, rice flour, salt and pepper. set aside. 
3. Heat A LOT of oil in a largest deep pan you have over high heat
4. Coat all the chicken with the flour mix, tap them well to remove excess flour. 
Chicken after first frying
5. Check the temperature of the oil by throwing a little bit of the four into the oil, if it starts to bubble vigorously, it's ready. 
6. Carefully, slide the chicken wings into the hot oil & do not crowd the pan too much. If your pan is small, fry them in batches. 
Cook for around 10-12 minutes, turning the chicken a few times to cook them well. 
Drain the cooked chicken, set aside for a few minutes. (DO NOT BE ALARMED if your chicken still looks pale and not golden brown. Remember we will be frying them one. more. time)
7. With the same hot oil, fry the chicken wings again for 8 minutes until they turn golden brown and super crunchy (it should have a hard crunchy exterior). Drain the chicken and set aside. 

1. In a skillet, heat some oil on medium high heat. 
2. Add minced garlic & sliced chillies. Cook until fragrant
3. Add in soy sauce, corn syrup, white vinegar and brown sugar. Mix well. Cook until it turns bubbly all around. 
4. While the heat is still on, bung in all the warm crispy chicken wings into the hot sauce. Stir until all the chicken is coated with the sticky sauce. 
5. Serve warm with some rice or just by itself !

Try this one! It's really good!
Becareful though, it's super addictive.
My mom can't stop munching on them !

12 Mar 2015

떡볶이 주세요 ! "Please give me tteokbokki!"

There was a time back in high school when I was obsessed with K-Pop. If you don't know what K-pop is, I assume that you've been living under a rock. Basically K-pop itself derives from Korean pop and it was my jam back in the days. 
It's embarrassing to think about it today, but I regret nothing!

If it's not because of K-pop, I will not be eating any Korean food by now. Korean food used to be so foreign to me. But not anymore! Thanks to that phase in my life, now Korean food has become one of my favourite food of all time! 
I'm not sure whether it's the bold and strong flavours of the dishes, the uniqueness of the ingredients, or the spiciness, it just suits my palate really well. I love Korean BBQ, their soups, side dishes (banchan) and of course their street food. 

One of my favourite Korean street food is tteokbokki. It's a sticky and spicy rice cake dish that comes with fishcakes and sometimes-even ramyun. This dish has a great chewiness from the rice cakes and also a daring firey red look from the special Korean pepper paste called gochujang. So delicious to be eaten hot on a rainy day!

I always go to Maangchi's website whenever I feel like making a Korean dish. I have done several of her dishes in the past, and they were really tasty. This lady is a great cook! She has a killer knife skill, she knows her food well, and such a joy to watch :) Subscribe to her Youtube channel for more Korean food goodness!

Back to my tteokbokki, 
I did a some changes to the original recipe that Maangchi posted on her website. Usually, tteokbokki uses the cylinder shaped rice cakes (tteok) but I have the coin shaped ones in my freezer so I used that one instead. 
In Maangchi's recipe, it calls for an anchovy and kelp broth, but I couldn't find kelp nor anchovy (more like, we have tons of anchovy varieties in Indonesia, I didn't know which one is the right one) so I opted for the good old chicken stock powder. Please make sure that you don't put TOO much / if you're using the liquid stock, use the less sodium one. If not, you'll end up trying so hard to fix the saltiness ! - I actually put 2 tbsp of the chicken stock powder to my water and I ended up throwing the water away and start all over again with only 1 tbsp of the powder added. 

Bubbling, hot, spicy and loaded with goodness!
Adapted from Maangchi
Makes 8-10 portions

  • 450 gr coin shaped rice cake (tteok)
  • 4 cups of water
  • 1 tbsp chicken /vegetable stock powder 
  • 1/3 cup gochujang (Korean hot pepper paste)
  • 1 tbsp hot pepper flakes 
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 tbsp sugar
  • 3 long green onions, cut into 3-inch long pieces
  • 250 gr assorted fishcakes 
1. In a large pan /pot (I prefer non stick), add water and the stock powder. Stir and let it boil for 6-7 minutes
2. In a small bowl, combine gochujang, hot pepper flakes, sugar and minced garlic. Set aside
3. When the water is boiling, add in the rice cakes, gochujang mixture, green onions, and fishcakes. 
4. Stir continuously, let it boil until the sauce is reduced and thickened and the rice cakes are soft (approximately 10-15 minutes)
5. Serve immediately

This recipe yields a huge portion. It's perfect for a get together. But remember, this dish is best served immediately when it's still hot! Do not reheat this dish with a microwave, it'll dry out badly and your rice cakes will get tough :(
The best thing you can do is to reheat it in a small pan and add some water to prevent it from drying out. 

YES. I finally got my tteokbokki fix. 
How I miss pigging out to Korean food with my friend, Pinka back in Melbourne. 

What else should I make next week?

11 Mar 2015

An awkward start into the world of blogging, again.

It's been 3 months since 2015, and I finally decided to start blogging again.
It's kind of awkward staring at this blank page after the long hault. I keep pressing the "delete" button on my laptop, trying to find the right things to say or any particular stories that I can share (which is pretty difficult when you have a drama free life like I do). 

So here's the deal,
I am now working in the F&B industry, which is the industry I chose and fell in love with ever since I learnt how to cook in my greasy and messy kitchen back in Melbourne. No, I am not working as a cook, I'm currently working as an admin in a kick ass bakery owned by a great pastry chef, and I work closely with the most talented, inspiring people in the business. Despite feeling clueless in some aspects of the business (*cough finance *cough),  I am very thankful to God for giving me the chance to be where I am today.
Hopefully I'm not being much of a burden to the team :)

Apart from working there, I am also still running my cake business with my friend, Emira. Emira is currently pursuing her education in Japan, soon she'll be a legit baker / pastry chef ! I cannot be more proud because she finally doing what she loves to do.
Meanwhile, I am in charge of the business for now. It gets pretty exhausting that I have to balance out my work and my business at the same time, but I know when the time comes, it'll all work out :)
I made a promise with Emira that I will go to Japan and explore the pastry / bakery scene there with her, as soon as I have enough $$$ ! Wait for me Emira-chan !!!

Love life?
Let's just say that him and I decided to go our separate ways.
He knows by heart that long distance relationship is not his thing and along the way I realized that it is not for me either. As much as I didn't want it to happen, it happened.
I'm not going to lie but it has been extremelly difficult. There were times when I just sunk deeply in my own dark thoughts, but I always (somehow) pull myself back up.
We had our ups and downs throughout the 1.5 years we've been together, and it had been the best experience in my life. I have learnt so much about myself, him, and this whole relationship.
All I can say is, it just didn't work out the way we wanted it to be, and that's cool.
I wish him nothing but the best and I will do what it takes to get what is best for me too.

*deep sigh*

OK. On to the next topic!
I was very happy when Aurelia used the recipe on my blog and posted a picture of the end result on her Path ! It might not be much of a big deal for others, but it somehow pushes me to get back on track ! Thank you Aurelia <3 I terribly miss you, girl!

I haven't been cooking for a while and I think I should get back in the kitchen as soon as possible!

This blog has been so dead for so long, it's time to revamp everything!

I have a few recipes that I am very eager to try.
So stay tuned!