Chkmeruli Chicken with black garlic and pickled garlic cream

  • 1 1/2 lb or 25 ounces or 700 grams boneless chicken thighs
  • 2 tsp sumac
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/8 to 1/4 tsp aleppo pepper
  • 16 or 1 ounce or 28 grams fermented garlic cloves
  • 6 cloves or 1/2 ounce or 14 grams slices black garlic
  • 1/2 cup or 3.5 ounces or 100 grams olive oil
  • 1/2 cup or 4 ounces or 120 grams cream or creme fraiche
  • 1/2 cup or 2.5 ounces or 72 grams sake or water
  • 12 or 22.9 ounces or 650 grams thick white scallions
  • 2 TB shio koji
  • 4 TB or 2.1 ounces or 60 grams cultured butter

Skin on chicken thighs are best but skinless work as well. Marinate the chicken in the oil, sake and sliced black garlic. Let marinate overnight in fridge, or an hour or two on the counter.

Make the sauce to coat the chicken for the oven from the shio koji, fermented or fresh garlic, heavy cream, turmeric, sumac and aleppo pepper. A blender works well, but you could use a mortar and pestle. Set aside.

Set the sauce aside and heat the oven to 400F. In a pan heat the butter until slightly browned.

Place the oily chicken in the hot pan. The oil will help prevent the butter from burning. Brown the chicken on both sides. It takes about 10 minutes to brown the first side.

Make sure to gently move the chicken so it does not stick to the pan while deeply browning. The juices are beginning to caramelize and they could burn if you don’t watch carefully.

Turn the chicken and brown the other side for five minutes, adding any scallions or black garlic from the marinade. When just browned remove the chicken and place on sheet pan. Strain the oil and reserve for the broccoli.

Cover with the garlic cream sauce and place on the top shelf of the oven. shelf. Do not cover the chicken. Cook five to ten more minutes or until nicely browned and the internal temperature is at least 155F. Remove from the oven and let rest before serving. If the pan is extremely hot when you take it out of the oven, put the chicken on another dish to cool down.

Rice and Wheat Berry Koji Pilaf

  • 1 cup or 6.5 ounces or 186 grams converted basmati rice (or brown)
  • 1/2 cup or 2.9 ounces or 80 grams wheat berry koji
  • 2 cups or 16 ounces or 458 grams water
  • 1/2 cup or 2.8 ounces or 82 grams oil (from chicken marinade)
  • 1 red pepper or 6.3 ounces or 180 grams

Heat a sauce pan and add the strained oil and marinade from the chicken. Careful of splattering when you add the rice and the wheat berry koji. Cook until a little brown. Make sure to scrap the bottom of the pan while browning. Add the water and bring the rice to a boil. Add peppers and cover the pot tightly. Turn the heat down to very low and cook the rice for 20 minutes. Remove the cover and let steam escape before putting in a serving container. Garnish with chopped parsley or cilantro if you like. A freshly squeezed lemon is also very good on the rice right before serving.


  • 2 cups big florets or 7.8 ounces or 222 grams of raw broccoli
  • 1/2 cup or 2.8 ounces or 82 grams of oil from the chicken.

Use the oil from the chicken and saute the broccoli. If your chicken oil is too dark or burnt, use any oil to coat the pan after wiping out the pan. Cover after a few minutes with lid. Let steam a few minutes if necessary. Salt and pepper, and toasted sesame seeds are a good garnish but none is needed.


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