The secret to this dish is a brown sugar syrup infused with fresh ginger.
A few other special additions (tamari and rice vinegar) transform this caramel glaze into the most flavorful sweet and savory coating for chicken. All you’ll want on the side are tender steamed bok choy and sticky rice to soak up the sauce. This meal is what we always hope Chinese takeout will taste like: super flavorful and elegant. Cook, relax and enjoy!
What you’ll need:
1 cup sushi rice
4 cloves garlic
1 oz fresh ginger
1 oz scallions
8 oz baby bok choy
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs
¼ cup light brown sugar
8 oz chicken broth
¼ cup rice vinegar
¼ cup tamari
neutral oil such as vegetable or safflower
freshly ground black pepper
large pot with a lid
1. Cook rice
Rinse rice in a fine-mesh sieve until the water runs clear. Combine rice, 1½ cups water and a pinch salt in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer, cover, and cook until water is absorbed and rice is tender, 15 minutes. Keep covered until ready to serve.
2. Prep ingredients
Peel garlic and thinly slice. Thinly slice ginger and scallions. Trim bok choy and halve lengthwise. Rinse under cold water to remove any grit.
3. Brown chicken
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large pot over medium-high. Season chicken with salt and pepper and add to pot. Cook until browned on both sides, 6–8 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
4. Make sauce
Add garlic and ginger to pot and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add ¼ cup water and cook, scraping up any browned bits from bottom of the pot. Add brown sugar and stir to dissolve. Add broth, vinegar, and tamari and bring to a simmer. Return chicken to pot and simmer until chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate.
5. Finish chicken
Increase heat to medium-high. Simmer rapidly until sauce is reduced and syrupy, about 5 minutes more. Return chicken to pot and turn to coat. Remove from heat.
6. Steam bok choy
Meanwhile, fill a medium saucepan with ½-inch of water and bring to a simmer. Add bok choy and cover. Steam until just tender, about 3 minutes; drain. Serve chicken and bok choy over rice with sauce spooned over top. Sprinkle with scallions. Enjoy!