Crispy Orange-Ginger Chicken with Pickled Diakon & Carrots and Cucumber Kimchi

I’ve finally recovered from the holidays.  I had a wonderful holiday season, but I’ve been baked-out (in the culinary sense) and sick, and now I’m back in the game!

I made this meal last night.  The idea started with craving some pickled carrots.  That might sound like an odd craving, but they are quite tasty if you haven’t had them.  Chicken was on sale at the grocery store, and I love an orange-ginger glaze on chicken when I’m going Asian.  Cucumber Kimchi (oi sobagi) was sounding rather yummy, too.

I was cooking for Christina (my gf) and my mom.  The latter of whom can have a picky palate, particularly when it comes to vegetables and spice, so I’m often restricted in my options for dinner with her.  Naturally, I like to push her to try new things, though, which with this included the pickled veg.

Much to my surprise, my mom actually loved the dish, particularly the pickled bits!  That’s a rare result, and I do think this dish turned out quite well, so I think it’s a good one to share with you all after the holiday break.

With Cucumber Kimchi and pickled daikon & carrots

While at the grocery store, they actually had daikon radish, which I absolutely love pickled, so I picked that up, too. 

Ingredients:

Pickled Diakon & Carrots

  • Carrots
  • Daikon Radish
  • White or Rice vinegar
  • Sugar
  • Water
  • Salt
  • Cilantro for topping

Cucumber Kimchi

  • Cucumber
  • Korean red pepper powder (from Korean market)
  • Minced Garlic
  • Minced Ginger
  • Salt
  • Scallions

Crispy Orange-Ginger Chicken

  • Chicken breast
  • Panko
  • Minced Ginger
  • An orange glaze (homemade or Panda Express, etc.)
  • Egg
  • Flour
  • Vegetable Oil

Start off with the veggies.

  • Peel the carrots and daikon and cut into 3-to-4-inch-long sections and julienne them.  I was given a mandoline for Christmas, which made this much easier.  However, carrots aren’t that easy to julienne on a mandoline just because they’re not tall when slicing lengthwise. Place both into a bowl, sprinkle with salt throughout, and massage to coat evenly.  Let sit for around 10 minutes until they release liquid and are bendable but still crisp.
  • Slice the cucumber into 1/2″ thick slices, lengthwise. Sprinkle with salt like above and let sit for 20-30 minutes to soften and release some liquid while continuing with the following.
  • Put one-part sugar, two-parts water, and four-parts vinegar into a saucepan.  Bring to a boil until sugar dissolves.  You want enough liquid to cover the daikon and carrots.
  • Drain, rinse, and squeeze the daikon and carrots and place into a bowl that can fit inside another bowl of ice water.  Once you place the bowl in the ice water, pour the pickling solution from the saucepan over the daikon and carrots.  Let sit.
  • If there isn’t enough vinegar bite to them after sitting, pour out some of the liquid and add more vinegar.

Time for the chicken.

  • Heat up a skillet of 1/4″ or 1/2″ worth of vegetable oil over medium heat.  Cut large-sized cubes from the breasts.  Certainly save the “scraps” to utilize in another meal.  Marinating this chicken is ideal, but I did not have the prep time to do so.
  • Prepare three small bowls of flour, beaten egg, and Panko.
  • One cube at a time, coat the chicken in flour, then egg, then Panko, and place into the oil.  Flip when golden brown.  The chicken should be cooked halfway up the cube.  If not, lower the heat slightly to allow for the inside to cook without burning the crispy Panko.
  • While the chicken cooks, prepare the glaze and the kimchi coating.  Combine a teaspoon of ginger with a half cup of orange glaze.
  • Combine a tablespoon of garlic, teaspoon of ginger, two tablespoons on chopped scallion, and a tablespoon or two of the red pepper powder.  I added some rice vinegar to wet the mixture enough to more easily spread.
  • When chicken is finished cooking, place the cubes on a paper towel that’s on a plate to allow the excess oil to drain.  Brush the top with glaze or completely coat if the glaze you’re using isn’t very bold.

Plating:

To plate, place the cucumber slice along the center length of the plate.  Coat in the kimchi mixture.  Place three cubes of chicken evenly along the cucumber.  Grab a bundle of the pickled daikon and carrots, squeeze out excess liquid, and place on top of each piece of chicken.  Top with some cilantro, and you’re done.

I hope you all enjoy this dish!  Let me know what you think.

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