How to Make Yakitori-Japanese Grilled Chicken Skewers
Japanese-Style Grilled Chicken
Sometimes the simplest things can be some of the best things in life. Take the humble Yakitori for instance. Yakitori, or grilled skewered chicken, is one of the simplest things in the repertoire of Japanese cuisine. Yet it's incredibly delicious when done well.
The most basics of Yakitori is plain old pieces of chicken on a skewer, lightly salted during the grilling process. Although the simply salted version is fantastic, many people go for the teriyaki-based ones that are just too hard to resist.
A good Yakitori should never be over-cooked and the sauce should not be too sweet. The combination of char-grilled chicken and savory-sweet sauce is absolutely irresistible.
An easy way to get some veggies in your diet is to add some to the skewers along with the chicken. Yakitori with Negi ( Welsh onion ) are called Negima and is my favorite amongst the variety of Yakitori skewers available. If you can't find them, feel free to substitute it with leeks or another vegetable.
Make sure you make a whole bunch of them because they are sure to disappear fast. They go great with a side of edamame and beer, or served with a bowl of steamed rice for a more proper meal.
- Leave the skin on the chicken like the Japanese do for moist and tender results.
- Brush the sauce 2-3 times for a nice glaze.
- If you don't have a grill, feel free to use a frying pan.
- Serve with some steamed rice and a salad for a complete meal.
Check out some of my other Japanese food recipes here on Squidoo
If you're ready to add some variety to your grill, try this one. The Skirt Steak with Red Miso and Yuzu Kosho Scallops are definite winners.
- Prep time: 20 min
- Cook time: 15 min
- Ready in: 35 min
- Yields: 8 skewers
- 3/4 pound chicken thigh ( cut into bite-sized pieces )
- 1/2 stalk Negi ( cut into 1-inch blocks )
- 8 bamboo skewers
- "YAKITORI GLAZE"
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 6 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons mirin
- 2 tablespoons sake
- Put the ingredients for the glaze into a saucepan and heat on medium heat for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Bring the heat to low and simmer until the sauce thickens ( approximately 10 minutes ), being careful to stir now and then to prevent the sauce from burning.
- Remove from heat and set aside. Sauce will thicken as it cools.
- Thread the chicken onto the skewers, alternating with the negi.
- Grill the chicken skewers on both sides until half cooked through.
- Brush the sauce on both sides and continue grilling.
- Repeat brushing the sauce on the skewers one more time and grill until chicken is cooked. Do not overcook!
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There are so many reasons why I like this indoor grill. First it only takes 10 minutes to heat up and is hot enough to give a nice sear to meats, seafood and vegetables. Non-stick surface makes for easy cleaning and hardly any smoke. Love it!
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