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Ez Perfect Chicken Teriyaki
Thursday, April 17, 2008 | Time: 4:20 AM


I found this recipe on cooksillustrated.com - my new favorite cooking site! You do have to subscribe to get the good stuff (there are some free videos and recipes too), but it's well worth it! They test every recipe until they get it just right, so all of their creations are delicious. Well thats the theory anyway, so I'm trying them out to see - and so far, this first recipe I've made is excellent.
I had to aquire some mirin (rice wine vinegar), but I usually keep a bag of frozen chicken thighs ($5 at walmart) in my freezer. I used powdered ginger because I couldn't find any whole or minced! It was still yummy, but I think it would've been better with fresh ginger. Sometimes I really miss the west coast, they always have the right ingredients :)
I've been trying unsuccessfully to make this recipe for a while. I finally gave up, but when I found it on cooksillustrated, it seemed so straight forward I had to just try it. And I'm very happy with the results - its nearly exactly like proper teriyaki from my favorite teriyaki restaurant :)
Previously, I've tried with chicken breast, and it was always dry and funky. Its obvious to me, now, that it can really only properly be made with chicken thighs *duh* (the sweeter dark meat). And leaving the skin on to crisp under the broiler is genius! Sweet, juicy chicken with a crispy exterior.. and the mirin really makes the sauce, dont leave that out!
I can go on and on about how delicious this is, but you really have to try it for yourself!
This dish doesn't really need much with it, I serve it with rice and a little toasted pineapple (made under the broiler alongside the chicken). You could serve it with a side of salad.. but the chicken is really the only thing you'll want to munch, trust me!
(note: would make a great bento food, its great cold or hot)

This recipe serves Two.

4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 5 ounces each), excess skin and fat trimmed; remaining skin slashed 3 times with paring knife

Ground black pepper
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1 small garlic clove , minced or pressed through garlic press (about 1/2 teaspoon)
1 tablespoon mirin
1/4 teaspoon cornstarch

1. Position oven rack about 12 inches from heat source; heat broiler. Season chicken thighs with salt and pepper; set thighs skin side up on broiler pan (or foil-lined rimmed baking sheet fitted with flat wire rack), tucking exposed meat under skin and lightly flattening thighs to be of relatively even thickness. Broil until skin is crisp and golden brown and thickest parts of thighs register 175 degrees on instant-read thermometer, 20 to 26 minutes, rotating pan halfway through cooking time for even browning.
2. While chicken cooks, combine soy sauce, sugar, ginger, and garlic in small saucepan; stir together mirin and cornstarch in small bowl until no lumps remain, then stir mirin mixture into saucepan. Bring sauce to boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until sauce is reduced to 1/3 cup and forms syrupy glaze, about 4 minutes. Cover to keep warm.
(I added some toasted sesame seeds to the sauce, too - adds a little richness and extra crunch!)
3. Transfer chicken to cutting board; let rest 2 to 3 minutes. Cut meat crosswise into 1/2-inch- wide strips. Transfer chicken to serving platter; stir teriyaki sauce to recombine, then drizzle to taste over chicken. Serve immediately, passing remaining sauce separately.


Preparing the chicken - click on the picture for larger version





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