Kimchi Queso Just Debuted in Dallas, Marrying Two Favorite Staples

Kimchi, Korea’s favorite condiment just married the national dish of Texas. While, yes, this combination does sound a little too strange to be good, trust us, it’s no weirder than the fact that it’s being served in a fried chicken joint.

Everyone in Texas knows that no meal is complete without that soft, orange dip that we affectionately call queso. However, few of us have had this cheesy chip dipping essential infused with kimchi. But Richardson, Texas’ Chicken Moto is changing that.

At this establishment, chicken is battered and fried in a sticky-sweet coating and served alongside traditional Southern sides like potato salad and slaw – all of which have a unique Korean flavor profile. This fusion of flavors naturally extends to queso.

Koreans consume 1.5 million tons of kimchi annually, so unsurprisingly any restaurant offering a taste of this culture will include this delightfully fermented side dish. Chef Sandy Bussey, the owner of Chicken Moto is the one who decided to incorporated this textured condiment into a typically no-frills dip.

It was a bold choice. However, it is a choice that works for the same reason adding pico de gallo to your cheesy dip is a game changer. It’s all about that smooth blend of texture and heat.

Two Types of Kimchi are Better than One

For Bussey’s queso, two types of kimchi are added. The base is a funky, fermented kimchi that is tempered with a mixture of milk and cheese until the ingredients are inseparably incorporated.

To add even more interest to the inventive queso, a sort of kimchi salsa prepared fresh and blended with gochujang and lime juice is scooped on top. The resulting mixture lends a soft, lingering heat and a brightness to the dip. 

The end result of combining the two kimchis with cheese is an unexpected flavor that absolutely makes sense in your mouth. The heat that slowly builds from the kimchi is reminiscent of a softly spicy pico de gallo. The texture too is familiar.

To keep this queso fundamentally different from others, however, instead of serving tortilla chips as accompaniment, taro chips are offered. You can, however, also choose to dip the curry ranch seasoned fried into this soupy sauce.

Or, if you’re feeling particularly indulgent, a succulent basket of crispy chicken skins wouldn’t be a bad decision either.

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