Korean food isn’t just another big presence in fast food nowadays. Other than American and Chinese restaurants, Korean joints are the next biggest presence in food courts. No wonder, the cuisine combines the accessibility of American food and the flavor spectrum of Chinese cuisine.
Their most famous export is the best proponent of this combined culinary philosophy. Whether you’re in New York or Singapore, Korean fried chicken will bring your palate to places comfortable and colorful. You get the regular Korean-style fried chicken and probably 15 flavors (at least!) to choose from. While not really a new idea, the explosion of Korean food definitely put dry and wet-rub chicken on the map. Then, there are the sides. These are not appetizers but rather what are known as side dishes or banchan in Korean cuisine. The banchan is designed to lend your chicken a complementary or contrasting flavor allowing you to get the best of tastes in your dish. Once you see a table of Korean chicken and its sides, you’ll also see that it brings some color to the dish too.
Though several side dishes exist, the following are the best for combining with fried chicken.
This is among the most popular side dishes in Korean cuisine. It is a traditional spicy and tangy dish comprising fermented and salted vegetables often radish and cabbage. The spicy nature of kimchi is attributed to the garlic, ginger, chili powder, sugar, fish sauce, and red pepper used in the dish’s recipe. Those intent on a light alternative to kimchi can opt for simple coleslaw salad made of western cabbage and a dressing containing vinegar, sesame oil, and soy sauce instead of mayonnaise.
This side dish contains seasoned soybean sprouts. It is a non-spicy option that will make the best accompaniment for spicy chicken. Seasoned soybean sprouts will also introduce texture and crunch to each chicken bite. The sprouts, in this case, will be parboiled then drained and mixed with soy sauce, sesame oil and seeds, garlic, and scallions.
This is made of braised baby potatoes. These are braised in rice syrup and soy sauce and cooked until their skin is crispy while their insides remain fluffy and soft. Algamja Jorim is a sweet dish that makes the perfect and healthier alternative to French fries. Its sweetness also perfectly complements the spicy taste of fried chicken.
The main ingredients of this dish are stir-fried glass noodles and vegetables. The dish is made of sweet potato starch noodles and a blend of vegetables. These include bell peppers, spinach, onions, cucumbers, mushrooms, and carrots. The vibrant and crunchy vegetables in this dish will give your dish a texture that contrasts the springy and chewy noodles and the rough chicken.
This side dish comprises fish cake sheets that are thinly sliced. The thin slices guarantee the flavors added to them will soak through. Eomuk Bokkeum is often offered as a side dish, but it can also be eaten on its own or with noodles and soup.
The above alternatives are not just a preserve of food lovers and those not afraid of trying new things. They taste great and are not too much a deviation from your everyday foods, making them ideal for everyone. Picking them for your side dish with fried chicken will be your best choice in a Korean restaurant.