Thursday, September 16, 2010

Teriyaki Chicken

I thawed some chicken legs overnight, so I decided to make teriyaki chicken tonight.  The original recipe I used is from one of my other cookbooks, Cooking from Above: Asian by Jody Vassallo, which provides photographs of all the ingredients and each step of the cooking process for each recipe--I highly recommend it!  The original recipe is for 4 servings, but since I only had two chicken legs, I cut it down to one serving.  If you would like to double or quadruple the recipe, simply double/quadruple the ingredients below and cook the same way.

Photo by Emily.
Teriyaki Chicken (serves 1)

Ingredients:

2 chicken drumsticks (or use thighs, skin on is prefered - if you don't want to eat the skin, remove it after cooking.
vegetable oil for light frying (use less oil if your chicken has skin)
1/3 c. sushi rice
1/2 c. water
sesame seeds (optional)
2 dried shitake mushrooms
vegetables (I used shredded bok choy, nappa cabbage, and a few slices of takuan [pickled diakon - the yellow stuff in the picture])
For teriyaki sauce:  (NOTE: or you can use a smidgen over 1/3 c. of pre-made teriyaki sauce if you don't have the ingredients or if you're lazy)
2 Tbsp. sake
2 Tbsp. mirin (or use same amount of sake with 2 tsp. sugar)
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1/2 tsp. superfine sugar (I used brown sugar and it works just fine, you could also use regular white sugar)

Place the mushrooms in a bowl and pour boiling water over them.  Leave them to sit until they have reconstituted, then squeeze out the excess water and cut into strips.

Rinse the rice in cold water several times until the water runs clear, then put in a pot with a tight-fitting lid along with measured water.  When the rice comes to a boil, continue to boil until the rice absorbs all the liquid, but doesn't become too dry.  Remove from heat, but leave lid on for at least 10 min.

Mix together ingredients for teriyaki sauce, or measure pre-made sauce.  Take chicken legs and cut three slits in each one, but not all the way through (this will help them cook more evenly).  Heat oil in a pan, then add the chicken, skin side down first.  Cook the chicken 10 min. (turning maybe once as needed) until the outside is browned.  Place a lid on the pan and cook for 10 more minutes.  Remove the chicken from the pan.

Add the teriyaki sauce to the pan and boil until the sauce becomes glossy.  Return the chicken to the pan and continue to cook the chicken until the sauce has caramelized on the chicken and thickens a bit.  Be careful!  The sauce will burn quickly after too much moisture has evaporated!  After the chicken is fully cooked and thoroughly coated in the sauce, remove from pan and turn off the heat.

Toss the mushrooms in the sauce left in the pan to coat them and heat them up.

To serve, arrange vegetables on a plate, and add rice and mushrooms.  Sprinkle the rice with sesame seeds if you'd like, then place chicken on top of the vegetables (I used a bed of shredded cabbage and bok choy).

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