Tempura Chicken

DSC00358 (2)-othm@tk-Tempura Chicken 2.jpg

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Grilled Sake and Soy Yakitori Chicken

DSC00502 (2) Chicken Kabobs.jpg

Yakitori (焼き鳥) is a Japanese type of skewered bite-sized pieces of grilled chicken and are prominent on the menus of most izakayas, casual Japanese restaurants that serve drinks and small bites of food. The preparation of Yakitori involves skewering the meat with kushi (串), a type of skewer typically made of steel, bamboo, or something made of similar materials. Afterwards, they are grilled over a charcoal fire. During or after cooking, the meat is typically seasoned with a tare sauce or salted.

Yakitori seasonings are primarily divided among two types: salty or salty-sweet. The salty type usually uses plain salt as its main seasoning. For the salty-sweet variety, tare, a special sauce consisting of mirin, sake, soy sauce, and sugar is used. Other common spices include powdered cayenne pepper, shichimi, Japanese pepper, black pepper, and wasabi, according to one’s tastes.

While grilling, I like to dip my chicken into the tare, or dipping sauce, two or three times , making for a nice “layered shine” to the meat. If you cannot find boneless, skin-on chicken thighs at the market, buy about 2 1/2 pounds of bone-in thighs and cut the pieces from the bone yourself, saving a few bucks.

Serves 4

Ingredients:
For the Glaze:
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons mirin
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons sake

For the Chicken:
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
5 scallions or green onions, white and green portions, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup soy and sake glaze

Special Equipment:
Bamboo skewers


Directions:

For the Glaze:
Stir brown sugar, soy sauce, honey, water, mirin, rice vinegar and sake together in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook until reduced in volume by half, about 25 to 30 minutes. Let glaze cool to thicken, for at least 1 hour.

For the Chicken:
Soak about eight 6-inch skewers in water to cover for at least 20 minutes.

Prepare a hot fire in a grill.

Thread the chicken onto the skewers alternating with the scallions, dividing the ingredients evenly among the skewers.

Pour the grilling glaze into a tall, narrow container, such as a pint glass. Working with one skewer at a time, dip a skewer in the glaze to coat. Remove, then repeat twice more to thoroughly coat the chicken. You can also brush the glaze onto the chicken if desired.

Grill the skewers over direct heat, turning occasionally, until the chicken is lightly charred outside and cooked through and the glaze is caramelized, about 2 minutes per side. Arrange on a platter and serve immediately.


Cook’s Notes:

Alternatively to get move flavor into the meat, pour 1/4 cup of the glaze in a large bowl and add the chicken to the glaze; cover and allow to marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

This glaze is a simple way to add a ton of flavor to any dish. It’s a perfect complement to get that sweet and slightly spicy flavor with other sauces like sambal oelek or gochujang.

All photographs and content are copyright protected. Please do not use these photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this photograph and all other contents, then we kindly ask that you link back to this site. We are eternally grateful and we appreciate your support of this blog.

Thank you so much!

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Schichimi Togarashi

Shichimi tōgarashi ( 唐辛子),  also known as nana-iro tōgarashi (七色唐辛子) or simply shichimi, is a common Japanese spice mixture. containing seven ingredients.

Togarashi, the Japanese word for “chiles,” is a group of condiments always including chiles that bring out the clean, simple flavors of Japanese food.

A typical blend may contain:
-coarsely ground red chilli pepper (the main ingredient)
– roasted orange peel
-black sesame seeds
-white sesame seeds
-hemp seeds
– ground ginger
nori or aonori

Some recipes may substitute or supplement these with poppy seed, yuzu peel,rape seed or shiso.

Shichimi should be distinguished from ichimi tōgarashi (一味唐辛子), which is simply ground red chili pepper, and means literally “one flavor chili pepper” (ichi meaning “one”).

 The culinary history of this  spice mix dates back at least to the 17th century, when it was produced by herb dealers in Edo  which is current day Tokyo, and sometimes it is referred to as Yagenbori (Japanese: , from the name of the original place of production). Most shichimi sold today come from one of three kinds, sold near temples: Yagenbori (やげん堀?) sold near Sensō-ji, Shichimiya (七味家?) sold near Kiyomizu-dera, and Yawataya Isogorō (八幡屋磯五郎?) sold near Zenkō-ji.

Yagenbori Shichimi Togarashi Shin-Nakamise Main Store in Asakusa,Tokyo.

In terms of use, many cooks will add it  to soups and on noodles and gyūdon. In Japan, some rice products such as rice cakes, agemochi and roasted rice crackers also use it for seasoning.

Togarashi works well with fatty foods such as unagi (broiled eel), tempuras, shabu shabu , which are small bits of food cooked in rich broth, noodle dishes, and yakitori (grilled dishes). Nanami togarashi is a close cousin, with a slightly different proportion of ingredients emphasizing citrus zest.

Makes About 1/2 Cup
Ingredients:
2 Tablespoons sansho (or 1 tablespoon black peppercorns)
1 Tablespoon dried tangerine peel
1 Tablespoon ground red chile pepper
2 teaspoons flaked nori
2 teaspoons black sesame seeds
2 teaspoons white poppy seeds
2 teaspoons minced garlic

Directions:
Combine the sansho (or black peppercorns), tangerine peel, ground red chile pepper, nori, and minced garlic.Grind the first four ingredients together to a chunky consistency.Add the black sesame seeds, white poppy seeds to the ground mixture. Store refrigerated in an airtight container up to 1 month.