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Chicken Yakitori

“Will you hold me sacred?
Will you hold me tight?
Can you colorize my life I’m so sick of black and white?
Can you make it a little less old?

Will you make me some magic, with your own two hands?
Can you build an emerald city with these grains of sand?
Can you give me something that I can take home?”

- I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That) by Meat Loaf

I don’t know if it’s like this in every country, but over here anything that has the word “Japanese” in it means money. Japanese restaurants here cost a lot, as do all kinds of Japanese food and products. It’s the main reason why I learned to do my own sushi, and yesterday, my own Chicken Yakitori at home.

The traditional Yakitori means grilled chicken on skewers (like Malaysian satay or Middle Eastern kebab), but I have neither a grill nor the skewers so I grilled it on my pan instead.

Here two sticks of Chicken Yakitori can cost 9 euros. I mean, 9 FREAKIN’ EUROS FOR A FEW PIECES OF CHICKEN BREAST??!!

That’s the main reason why people hesitate to go to a Japanese restaurant. In any other restaurants we pay 9euros or more, but we get a huge plate of chicken to eat to our heart’s content. In a Japanese restaurant, 9 euros is enough only for an appetiser. They are extremely stingy with their food.

Now I can understand if raw seafood cost a great deal, because seafood in general is expensive. But chicken as well? Even a normal fried rice, just because it’s called Japanese Fried Rice, costs more than double the price of a Chinese Fried Rice, and I can bet my money that they put monosodium glutamate as well. And in Europe, the cook of a Japanese restaurant is more likely to be mainland Chinese than a real Japanese.

For now, I’ll stick to eating Chicken Yakitori at home instead. We ate this with brown rice yesterday, and it was sublime. Easy and healthy.



1/2 cup soy sauce (I used Yamasa)
1/2 cup white wine or mirin or rice vinegar
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tbsps ginger syrup*
320gr chicken breast, cut into medium-sized pieces
1 green onion stalk, chopped
Salt to taste


*For the Ginger Syrup*

1. In a small saucepan, put 1/2 cup of water and 1/2 cup of sugar. Cut a 2cm piece of ginger and slice into 6 pieces. Put in the saucepan and heat on a medium flame until it boils before tranferring to a smaller flame over low heat. When liquid thickens after a few minute, remove from heat.

For Chicken Yakitori:

2. In a mixing bowl, mix the soy sauce, wine, garlic and ginger syrup together. Add the chicken pieces and coat well with the marinade. Cover and keep in the fridge for at least an hour.

3. Before cooking, drain the chicken pieces with a sieve and reserve the marinade for later.

4. In a heated pan, brown the chicken on one side for 4 minutes on medium-high fire. Flip chicken pieces to other side and continue browning for another 3 minutes. Be careful not to overcook as chicken pieces can become too dry.

5. While the chicken is cooking, heat up the reserved marinade in a small saucepan over a gentle flame. When chicken is ready to serve, drizzle the marinade over the chicken and add the green onions. Season with salt if preferred.

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