Posts Tagged ‘taré’

Chicken Wings

chicken wings and rice

These chicken wings are touted as “the world’s longest recipe for chicken wings” and it’s true, they aren’t the kind of chicken wings you throw together on a Wednesday night, but they are really, really good. If you do most of the preparation a day or two before, actual cooking time is not that bad and totally worth it.

chicken wings, bacon and pork fat

The chicken wings follow the same kind of preparation as the chicken in Momofuku’s Chicken & Egg, so if you have your chicken wings waiting for you in the fridge, you’re good to go. If you don’t, basically, you confit your wings and some bacon in pork fat to infuse the chicken with a rich smokiness and then let the wings chill completely in the fat.

pan frying chicken wings in cast-iron skillet

When you’re ready to eat, heat up the fat, strain out the chicken wings and pat dry. The chicken won’t look anything close to cooked, but don’t worry, then wings are then pan fried in a cast-iron skillet until deeply browned and then tossed with a sauce made with taré (luckily I had some extra in the fridge), the confit fat, sliced garlic and pickled chilies. Toss some green onions on for garnish and it’s good eats, especially with rice.

chicken wings tossed in sauce

Sweet, spicy, juicy and crispy, these were some good chicken wings, but what really made the wings shine was the sauce. Save any left over sauce you have because its delicious as a dipping sauce or on rice or noodles.

rice topped with sesame seed and nori

delicious!

sweet, spicy, crisp and juicy, these wings are great with rice

really, really good wings

Momofuku Ramen Broth

Good broth is the key to good ramen. It should be sweet, salty and robust. I was pretty excited about making the broth, which was a good thing because it ended up taking over 8 and a half hours to finish.

konbu in big pot

Momofuku ramen broth is made with konbu, shiitake mushrooms, chicken, pork, bacon, and taré. I started by putting two pieces of konbu into my biggest pot. With the seaweed happily expanding, I tossed in some dried shiitakes. I love shiitakes, fresh or dried. They have a delicious earthy umami smell, but not everyone agrees. Some people like the taste but can’t stand the smell, like Mike. Isn’t that just like how people don’t like liver but love foie gras or paté? Hello, it’s all liver! Or in this case, all mushrooms!

dried shiitakes

Speaking of mushrooms, I hope you like them because with this recipe, you’re going to end up with a lot of “spent” ingredients that were just used for flavour. Strain out the mushrooms and add your chicken to the pot to simmer until the meat pulls away from the bones with ease.

leftover cooked chicken in top chef glad ware

The chicken was nice and tender with a clean flavour, so I saved it. It doesn’t mention what’s done with the leftover chicken in the book, but I didn’t want to throw away 4 pounds of chicken meat!

After straining out the chicken, some meaty pork bones are roasted and added to the broth. This is also when you add your bacon for some smoky pig flavour. The bacon is strained out after 45 minutes. I didn’t know what to do with the boiled bacon so I threw it away even though it made me sad inside. I know, I know, I threw away the bacon and kept the chicken. I’m crazy like that. But trust me, boiled bacon is not a good thing. Looking back, I should have tried to crisp it up and eat it for a snack.

After all that adding and straining, it’s simmer for another 7 hours with the pork bones still in the stock. For the last little bit, add the vegetables and then strain those out too. Finally, success!

Well…no. There was one little problem: The recipe yield was 2 quarts, but somehow I only ended up with a little over 1. The simple solution? Add more water. I was worried that adding water would make the broth less porky, but it turns out I just concentrated the broth. It was kind of a “duh” moment, because the cookbook actually suggests boiling it down for space-saving purposes.

taré

Anyway, I strained it yet again, added some more water, seasoned with the taré, and took a quick taste: success! It was smoky, porky, and delicious. There was a definite luxurious feel to it, possibly because of the copious amounts of meat used. Worth it? Oh yes.

Taré: yakitori barbeque sauce

finished taré

Taré is yakitori barbeque sauce. Yakitori is smokey, juicy and delicious. I think some of that deliciousness is due to the fact it’s meat-on-a-stick. Who doesn’t love meat on a stick? I know I do! Using taré to season the ramen broth lends it some of that yummy meat-on-a-stick flavour.

chicken carcassas

The super-smoky barbeque flavour is created from roasted chicken bones. Chicken carcasses are perfect for this. The carcasses had the butts attached so there was a lot of fat in the pan after roasting, so I drained bit of it out and saved the browned bones and caramelized fat for deglazing.

taré in saucepan

After deglazing and reducing with sake, mirin and soy sauce, the taré was ready to use for seasoning. Salty, with a smokey, meaty flavour, the taré will really give the ramen broth depth.