How to cook: Chicken teriyaki

When you discover what’s in a bottle of teriyaki sauce, you will wonder why you have been buying bottles and bottles of the stuff when it’s so easy to prepare it at home. Mirin, sake, soy sauce and, optionally, honey. I like to add a bit of ginger but it’s not really a must. In fact, the traditional Japanese teriyaki recipe does not include ginger at all. You mix the ingredients for the sauce, marinate the boneless chicken in it and then you grill the chicken. That’s it, in a nutshell. Of course, if you want to make sure that your chicken teriyaki is not so-so, you will have to pay attention to the small details that make all the difference.

1) Try to use chicken thigh or leg fillets rather than chicken breast fillets. Skin on.

2) Use light soy sauce. I use Kikkoman but if you have access to more brands, you can always try something else. There might be something better than Kikkoman. The local soy sauce brands like Silver Swan and Datu Puti fall under dark soy sauce. They give the chicken a dark rather than a reddish-gold color.

3) You can’t dispense with the marinating part. You have to give the chicken enough time to absorb the flavors in the marinade. »

How to cook: Chicken katsu

chicken-katsu

Before I learned to appreciate the raw seafood in Japanese cuisine, I was smitten with tonkatsu and that was what I'd order in just about every Japanese restaurant that I went to. Tonkatsu is deep-fried breaded pork ("ton") cutlets ("katsu") … »

How to cook: Ebi (shrimp) tempura

ebi-tempura

Panko is a wonderful thing for fried food. And although traditionally used for dishes like tonkatsu, I like to use panko for making tempura too. Instead of dipping the shrimps in batter, I cooked my ebi tempura by dredging the shrimps in flour, … »

Wheat noodles with wakame and Korean seaweed

wheat-noodles-seaweeds2

Taking a break from the usual, we had this noodle dish for breakfast today. The wheat noodles I used are flat but you can use other kinds of noodle -- somen, ramen, udon or soba -- to make this dish.Apart from the seasonings, there are only five … »

How to cook: Ma Yi Shang Shu (Ants Climbing A Tree)

Ma Yi Shang Shu (Ants Climbing A Tree)

The Chinese, the Italians and the Arabs all used to claim having invented the noodle. Then, in 2005 in Lajia in the Chinese province of Qinghai, archeologists unearthed "an upturned earthenware bowl filled with brownish-yellow, fine clay. When they … »

How to cook: Chicken afritada, a colonial legacy

Chicken afritada

After three and a half centuries of Spanish colonization, it is not surprising that we find a lot of Mediterranean style stews in our cuisine. There are claims, however, that what we consider as Spanish-influenced dishes more closely resemble their … »

How to cook: Clams in ponzu sauce

clams-ponzu-sauce

I learned a new Japanese cooking term today -- ponzu, a sauce made with citrus juice, soy sauce and mirin. And I cooked a new dish today -- a clam appetizer dish. Very simple to to make and very tasty too.Of course, it all starts with cleaning … »

How to cook: Yakisoba

yakisoba

Two things about the yakisoba I cooked for lunch today: First, most yakisoba recipes I found online use ready made soba sauce. That really makes me uncomfortable. It's like saying you can't make yakisoba if you don't buy yakisoba sauce. So I … »