Sunday, 25 February 2007

Chiharu's Teriyaki Chicken - 千春の照り焼き鳥

chiharu's teriyaki chicken

More than anything else, I bond with my co-workers over food. When I first arrived in Japan it was the endless stream of 'can you' questions: can you use chopsticks? can you drink green tea? can you eat raw fish? can you eat eel? Later, after I'd gotten settled into my own kitchen, it was me asking the 'can you' questions: can you buy baking soda in Japan? can you roast meat in a toaster oven? can I use any kind of miso in a recipe? Worried that I might starve on this strange new cuisine they took me into their homes and showed me how to make basic Japanese dishes like simmered fish, okonomiyaki and yakisoba.

Lately one of my favorite senseis, Chiharu, has been bringing photocopies of her recipes for me to practise my Japanese with. Her teriyaki chicken has always been a favorite at our drinking parties and the recipe is more of a cooking suggestion, something quick and simple you can throw together on a Sunday night with some rice and a side salad, which is what I did tonight.

Recipe: Chiharu's Teriyaki Chicken - 千春の照り焼き鳥
Serves 2

2 boneless chicken thighs, skin removed.
2 tablespoons men tsuyu (soba/udon sauce)**
1 tablespoon sake
1 teaspoon fine sugar
Vegetable oil.

  • In a frypan on medium heat brown the chicken in the vegetable oil for 3 minutes or so on each side.

  • Mix the tsuyu, sake and sugar together and add to the pan.

  • Simmer until the liquid is gone, and served sliced over lettuce.

Make sure you wait until the sauce is thick and sticky to get the full sweet salty tang of the teriyaki and use thighs if you've got them. I subbed chicken breast above because I had some on hand, but the thickness was uneven and the meat ended up a little dry.

**Tsuyu is a thin liquid used as a dipping sauce or broth for soba and udon noodles, typically made from soy sauce, mirin and dashi stock. If you haven't got it to hand, other recipes use a mixture of soy sauce and mirin or you can have a go at making your own.

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