Fried chicken is one of those foods that can be super easy to make -- if you know what you're doing. For others who aren't as well initiated in the specific techniques, getting it just right can be quite a challenge. But even if you see regular southern-style fried chicken as something you could make in your sleep, all of that confidence could easily go out the window with the Korean version. That's because different ingredients naturally come with their own quirks and strategies. Thus, with Korean fried chicken, the batter can present a whole different set of difficulties for cooks who are used to the traditional U.S. version.
"Batter with cornstarch is trickier to work with, and it will clump up and burn faster than all-wheat flour batter," Chef Ji Hye Kim, founder of the Korean restaurant Miss Kim in Ann Arbor, Michigan, told the Daily Meal. As an expert in the matter, she's got the details on how to work with it.
Take Batch Cooking Seriously With Korean Fried Chicken
You probably already know how important it is to fry chicken in batches. After all, if you try to put too many pieces in the oil all at once, you'll end up with a huge mess -- regardless of the type of fried chicken you're making. Furthermore, crowding the pan will cause the oil's temperature to drop and negatively affect how the chicken cooks. Not only will you not get the even browning and crisping that you're after, but you may even end up with spots that remain undercooked. With Korean fried chicken, the corn starch complicates matters further so that you could end up with pieces that are simultaneously burnt if you try to fry too many at once. Chef Ji Hye Kim, of course, has the solution.
"Fry in smaller batches, just a few pieces at a time," Chef Kim urges. "Working in small batches ensures that the oil temperature won't drop too much, and the chicken pieces will have enough room to cook evenly and crisp up nicely."
Cooking just a few pieces of chicken at a time does require more patience. But it will totally be worth it in the end. Taking small-batch cooking seriously will make or break your Korean fried chicken, so be sure to follow Chef Kim's advice!
This Chicken Stays Crispy, Even In Sauce
There's a lot that sets Korean fried chicken apart -- from the batter to the specific way that it crisps up. Then there's the sauce! After it's fried, and then fried again to reach crispy perfection, the golden brown chicken is often slathered in plenty of sauce, which somehow manages not to make the chicken soggy thanks to double frying.
Two types of sauce prevail when it comes to Korean fried chicken: red spicy and soy garlic. Made at home, you can adjust the red spicy to your heat preference -- relying on more ketchup and less hot sauce if you don't like it too hot. Both sauces create a beautiful glaze on top of the chicken's crunchy exterior, making the dish an aesthetic pleasure all on its own. Whichever one you use, it's super important to follow Chef Ji Hye Kim's advice so that you get incredibly crispy chicken capable of standing up under a full coating of sauce.
Read the original article on Daily Meal.