Kimchi (Korean pickles) typically come packed in a spicy brine that’s so good, you could just bottle it up and use it like your very own secret sauce. Well, guess what: we’ve done just that, using it to add some fiercely feisty personality to chicken thighs. Keeping with the Eastern theme, there’s also an Asian pear and sesame slaw on the side that counters the heat with bit of tang and sweetness, plus rice to soak up all that flavor.
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White Wine Vinegar
Shredded Red Cabbage
Kimchi Hot Sauce
Bring ¾ cup water and a pinch of salt to a boil in a small pot. Add rice and cover. Lower heat, reduce to a gentle simmer, and cook until tender, about 15 minutes.
Heat a drizzle of oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Season chicken all over with salt and pepper. Add to pan and cook until browned and no longer pink in center, 5-6 minutes per side. Remove pan from heat and let chicken cool slightly.
Wash and dry all produce. Halve and core pear, then cut into ¼-inch-thick slices. Stack slices on top of each other and cut into thin matchsticks. Roughly chop cilantro. Halve, peel, and thinly slice shallot until you have about 2 TBSP.
Place vinegar and 2 tsp sugar in a small bowl. Add sliced shallot (to taste— you may not use all). Stir to dissolve sugar. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside to pickle shallot.
Place cabbage, pear, cilantro, sliced shallot, shallot pickling liquid, sesame oil, and 1 TBSP oil in a medium bowl. Toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
Add half the kimchi sauce to pan with chicken. Toss to coat chicken. Divide rice, slaw, and chicken between plates. Drizzle with remaining kimchi sauce (to taste).