Dak Dori Tang aka Spicy Braised Chicken

Saucy, spicy, braised decadence. Dak Dori Tang (Korean Spicy Braised Chicken) will leave you scraping the bowl and fighting for that last potato!

black bowl filled with rice and dak dori tang with black chopsticks and bigger pot in the background

Over the years, I’ve eaten my fair share of braised dishes. Honestly, I love them all.

The Korean version of braised chicken is especially tasty. Swimming in spicy gravy and begging for a bed of rice to soak up the sauce, you’ll be craving this dish even before the cold weather hits.

Redolent spices, heady aromas, and all that sauce — this is the kind of dish I dream about. Enjoy!

What is Dak Dori Tang?

Dak Dori Tang is a spicy Korean dish starring tender, braised chicken and hearty potatoes and carrots — all swimming in a luscious, hearty sauce. A one pot meal that’s easy to make at home. Exciting flavors. Rich and stewy. Dak Dori Tang is Korean comfort food to the core!

Once the cold weather hits, I cannot wait to make this dish. The flavors are so tantalizingly rich and savory — I cannot get enough!

Typically, this dish is enjoyed at home during the cold winter months.

black pot of dak dori tang aka korean spicy braised chicken

Why is Dak Dori Tang sometimes called Dak Bokkeumtang?

Dak Dori Tang and Dak Bokkeum Tang are actually the same dish.

I grew up calling this dish Dak Dori Tang. My Korean grandmother, who lived during the Japanese occupation, referred to it that way and so I did, too. Dak Dori Tang is a Japanese hybrid name and that’s how this dish was referred to for a long time.

Nowadays, South Koreans exclusively call this dish Dak Bokkeum Tang. By doing so, they acknowledge its Korean origins. Using its Korean name, rather than the Japanese one, also shows a symbolic rejection of Japan’s colonization efforts.

But older people still refer to it as Dak Dori Tang, as do many others.

Ingredients:

  • Chicken. Bone-in, skin-on chicken works best for this dish. I prefer a mixture of drumsticks and thighs. The skin and bones add extra flavor and depth. The long braising time transforms all that extra bone, skin, and collagen into the most luscious sauce!
  • Onion + Garlic. The aromatics that are the flavor base of this dish.
  • Jalapeno. Adds another layer of flavor and spice.
  • Gochukaru. Korean dried chili flakes add heat, intensity, and depth. A key ingredient for a luscious, thick sauce that’s earthy with good texture.
  • Gochujang. Korean fermented chili paste adds rich, deep, umami flavor that’s also spicy-sweet. Also helps to thicken the sauce.
  • Mirin. Sweet Korean cooking wine. Adds flavor and depth.
  • Soy Sauce. Do not use the low sodium kind! Adds richness and umami to the sauce.
  • Potatoes + Carrots. They soak up all the rich sauce and braised chicken flavor. So good!

PIN FOR LATER:

Can I substitute Gochukaru with something else?

Unfortunately, no — there’s no substitute for Gochukaru.

Gochukaru is dried Korean chili flakes. The taste is smoky, floral, spicy, slightly sweet. The texture is coarse and powdery.

I’ve seen recipes that substitute Gochukaru with Italian dried chili flakes, paprika, cayenne, chili powder, etc. They are NOT the same.

Gochukaru is truly its own unique ingredient. If you don’t have any, leave it out. But understand, the recipe will not taste the same.

Can I make Dak Dori Tang less spicy?

Dak Dori Tang is a spicy dish. It should be spicy, on some level.

But if you’d like to make it less spicy, I suggest checking the spicy level of your Gochujang first. Gochujang has a spicy level ranging from 1-5. You may have accidentally chosen a Gochujang with a spicy level 5. FYI, my recipes use Gochujang with medium spicy level 3.

For a milder but still spicy version, I suggest:

  • De-seed the jalapeno (or don’t include it at all)
  • Add 2 Tbsp Gochukaru (instead of 1/4 cup)
  • Add 1-2 tsp more sugar (sweetness cancels out spice)

Also, serve with lots of white rice to combat the spicyness level and soak up all that sauce!

How to Make Dak Dori Tang aka Spicy Braised Chicken:

Add onion, jalapeno, garlic, gochujang, gochukaru, soy sauce, and mirin to a food processor. Pulse until a rough paste forms. (You can also chop the onion and jalapeno and mince the garlic and ginger.)

Add chicken to a large pot. Scrape spicy paste over the chicken. Add water. Bring to a boil then lower heat and simmer until chicken is cooked through and tender, about 25-30 min.

Add potatoes. Cook until soft, another 10 min.

Garnish and serve!

close up of black pot filled with Dak Dori Tang

Spicy Braised Chicken aka Dak Dori Tang

The Subversive Table | Lis Lam
Saucy, spicy, braised decadence. Dak Dori Tang (Korean Spicy Braised Chicken) will leave you scraping the bowl and fighting for that last potato.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Korean
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

  • 3 lbs chicken drumsticks or thighs (with skin + bone) about 10-12 drumsticks OR 8-10 thighs
  • 1 large onion, cut into chunks (or 2 small ones)
  • 1 jalapeno, cut into chunks deseeded
  • 12 cloves garlic (or 1 entire head)
  • 1/4 cup gochujang (Korean fermented chili paste)
  • 1/4 cup gochukaru (Korean chili flakes/powder)
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp Mirin (Korean cooking wine or rice wine)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 lb yellow potatoes, cut into 2 inch chunks (or Golden Yukon)

Instructions
 

  • Add onion, jalapeno, garlic, gochujang, gochukaru, soy sauce, and mirin to a food processor. Pulse until a rough paste forms.
    white food processor filled with spicy paste
  • Add chicken to a large pot. Scrape spicy paste over the chicken. Add water.
    black pot filled with chicken drumsticks, spicy paste, and water
  • Heat pot to medium high heat and bring to boil. Lower heat, cover with a lid, and simmer on low until chicken is cooked through and tender, about 25-30 minutes. Keep an eye on the chicken as the bottom can burn.
  • Remove lid and add potatoes. Using a spoon, mix the potatoes into the braising liquid so that the potatoes are mostly submerged. Cover and simmer until potatoes are soft, about 10 minutes.
    pot filled with spicy braised chicken and potatoes with spicy sauce
  • Remove lid and check the braising liquid. If it looks watery, simmer with the lid off for a few more minutes until thickened. If it looks too thick, add a little water (2-4 Tbsp). The consistency should be similar to a thick gravy.
  • Garnish with sesame seeds and green onion. Serve hot with rice and kimchi.
    big pot of dak dori tang with garnish

Notes

*Most people do not have Gochukaru, Korean chili flakes. You’ll be tempted to double up on the Gochujang and this is definitely a doable option. But be forewarned, the sauce will thicken substantially! (Gochujang thickens dishes much more than plain Gochukaru alone.)
Keyword Braised, chicken, Dak Dori Tang, Spicy
All Recipes, Braised, Chicken, Dinner with Friends, Gochujang, Korean, Main, Potluck

One Comment

  1. Fantastic recipe. I didn’t have the Korean Chilly flakes but used indian chilly powder. Also, added sweet potatoes, carrots and raddish to the mix. It was superb! Thanks.

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