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Author Notes: When I was in college, my roommate and I loved going to a Vietnamese restaurant in town, where I always ordered the Clay Pot Caramel Chicken. Although I now live in a different town and I don't have a chance to return to that restaurant often, I still dream of that dish. I would always mix in the entire rice bowl that comes with it and let it soak up the sauce, so I figured, why not try it as a risotto. —CamsKitchen
- 6 cups reduced sodium chicken broth;
- 2 1.5 inch pieces fresh ginger, peeled;
- 1/4 cup sugar;
- 2 tablespoons water;
- 2 tablespoons olive oil;
- 6 scallions, whites and greens finely chopped;
- 1/2 pound chicken breast, pounded or cut thin and cut into slim strips;
- 1 cup arborio rice;
- 1/2 cup white wine or sake;
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil.
- Put chicken broth and one of the pieces of ginger, split in two, into a pot and begin heating over medium-high heat.
- When broth starts steaming, place sugar and water in small pan over medium heat. Keep a close eye on the caramel so that it does not burn. When the sugar/water mixtures starts turning a pale golden color, begin whisking without stopping. When it is turns amber and smells like caramel, take it off the heat.
- While continuing to whisk caramel vigorously, add a ladle of broth into the caramel. Make sure the broth is boiling by the time you add it to the caramel or the caramel will harden at the bottom of the pan because of the contact with the "cooler" broth. Continue whisking until the caramel is diluted. Add another ladle of broth and whisk until caramel is completely diluted. Return caramel-broth mixture to pot with broth and ginger and return to a boil. Reduce heat to low and let simmer.
- In a skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Mince the remaining piece of ginger. When the oil is hot, add 2/3rds of the chopped scallions and all of the minced ginger, allowing to sweat for 2-3 minutes. Season with salt.
- Add chicken strips and saute for 2-3 minutes more, until chicken is white on all sides. Season with salt.
- Add rice and let toast for about 2 minutes. Add wine or sake (or chicken stock) to deglaze.
- When the wine/sake is fully absorbed, add 1-2 ladles of warm broth. Keep adding broth 1-2 ladlefuls at a time, waiting for broth to be completely absorbed before adding more.
- When all broth has been absorbed, take risotto off heat. Stir in sesame oil and reserved chopped scallions. Serve immediately.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Risotto (Savory)
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