"Fall" in Love with Caramel Chicken
Food Network's Katie Lee just demonstrated the most perfect dish for fall and I'm all about it. Continue reading if, like me, you're into cozy, sticky, deliciousness.
All season long, I feel as though I have been striking out in the kitchen hence my recent silence. I'm not saying the dinners I've cooked or the recipes I have tried were bad. On the contrary, I made an amazing chicken and herb dumpling soup, adorable mini skillet meatloaves and just this past week I whipped up a big batch of chilli to die for. But nothing has satisfied my hunger for a new, truly unique yet comforting dish quite like Katie Lee's Caramel Chicken.
I know what you all are probably thinking. "How in the hell does caramel and chicken go together?" Imagine the way sugars in barbecue sauce caramelize on the grill to form the most scrumptious crust. Same diff here only caramel chicken has its own Asian flair. The dish expertly combines sweet, salty, sour and savoury. Talk about a flavour bomb. I picture all of you nodding your heads and saying, "ohhh okay I'm with you," just like I did when I watched Katie on TV. Now let's get into more detail about what makes this recipe so delicious and some of my improvisations.
The fish sauce is everything. It adds funk. It adds tang. But if you don't have it in your pantry or can't find it in the store, simply substitute worcestershire sauce. Problem solved.
I made caramel chicken for a Sunday dinner and for me it hit all the soul-fulfilling notes that a good Sunday meal should hit. I've said before that Sundays have a very special place in my heart because of my Aunt Pam who always brought our family together when I lived in Arizona and made the best dinner spreads. Miss you Aunt Pam! Sorry I digress. So when I say soulful notes I mean crispy, crunchy chicken skin, juicy thigh meat and a garlicky sauce that you want to lick off the plate. Plus the actual cooking is quick and painless. Did I mention it all happens in one pan/microwave?
Be sure to take these three changes into consideration when you're testing this recipe for yourself:
B&B = Brown Rice & Broccoli
For whatever reason, I feel healthier eating brown rice instead of white rice. I like the nutty flavour and toothsome texture a bit more as well. I also felt the dish needed a vegetable so I steamed 2 heads of broccoli which trapped all that glorious sauce in its florets yummm.
Fish Sauce Nowhere to Be Found
The fish sauce is everything. It adds funk. It adds tang. But if you don't have it in your pantry or can't find it in the store, simply substitute worcestershire sauce. Problem solved. Worcestershire contains anchovies and other spices that provide the much-needed acid to round out the sauce.
Sriracha is Always a Good Idea
The bottle of sriracha is always close at hand when Asian is on the menu. Its heat and brightness are incomparable to other hot sauces.
To wrap up, I just want to give a quick shout out to The Kitchen! As a Food Network fanatic my weekends would not be complete without this show. The cast, the conversations, the recipes and the themes all hit home with me and inspire me immensely. Give it a watch if you haven't done so already.