the teriyaki chicken we had for dinner last night was hands-down the best roasted chicken I’ve made. since I didn’t write out the actual recipe before; I’ll attempt it now, but this is an approximation. a good approximation.
teriyaki roasted chicken
1 big ol’ chicken (this one was a bit over 6 pounds)
1 batch homemade teriyaki sauce (recipe below), made the night before
3 finely sliced green onions
1/2 teaspoon grated ginger
1 teaspoon (more?) toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon black sesame seeds, + 1 teaspoon black sesame seeds set aside for roasting
combine teriyaki sauce with green onions, ginger, sesame oil and 1 T of the sesame seeds. marinate chicken in sauce in refrigerator for 2-6 hours, turning once midway.
preheat oven to 375° F. remove chicken from marinade and place in a lightly oiled roasting pan. pour about 1/2 cup of the teriyaki marinade over, and refrigerate the remainder of the teriyaki to glaze the chicken during roasting. roast for 30 - 40 minutes (depending on size -- 30 minutes is plenty for a 4-5 pounder; 40 minutes for a 6-pounder) then reduce heat to 300 °F and continue to roast for 40 minutes (for smaller chickens) to an hour (for the more zaftig chickens). glaze periodically with some of the reserved teriyaki sauce, and at the end of this hour, sprinkle chicken with remaining 1 teaspoon sesame seeds. increase heat to 425° F and continue roasting until skin is browned & crispy; about 15 minutes.
during the last roasting phase, take remaining teriyaki sauce and simmer for 15 minutes on the stovetop to cook thoroughly and reduce a bit.
when chicken is done and has rested, carve it and serve with the warm sauce. accompany with Japanese-style white rice (I heart good old Nishiki rice, prepared plainly with water and sea salt in the rice cooker) and veggies as desired (in this case, I glazed carrots with plain teriyaki sauce and roasted them during the last 40 minutes or so with the chicken).
1/2 cup shoyu
1/2 cup light soy sauce (NOT low-sodium soy, but light soy sauce that you can find in the Japanese section of a good Asian market)
1 cup nigori sake
1/3 cup sugar
simmer ingredients briefly in saucepan to dissolve sugar. refrigerate to chill before using.
this recipe is deceptively simple -- and shockingly delicious. I added the aromatics (ginger, green onion and sesame) to the teriyaki because I wasn’t able to grill the chicken; if I had been grilling, I would have kept the sauce plain. it’s thinner than teriyaki sauce one buys, and you can thicken it with arrowroot or cornstarch if you want, but please keep it on the thin side. you may want it thicker on a piece of fish, or chunks of chicken on skewers, maybe, but for a roasted chicken, un-thickened was the way to go. it somehow tenderized and amplified all of the flavors in a gorgeous yet subtle way, and the finished chicken was beautiful, shiny and reddish-brown. I’ll be making this again soon.
many recipes call for mirin, but I prefer sake, especially a rich, sweet nigori sake. I used the cheap stuff, and it was absolutely great.
and in this post, you get two (two! TWO!) recipes for the price of one, since tonight, I’m cooking rice pudding. I’ve made a slight change in an old recipe of mine -- I always made this with Japanese sweet brown rice before, and this time, I'm using the white variety of the same rice. it smells divine. I always use a neuro-fuzzy-logic rice cooker to make rice and rice pudding, so I’m afraid that my instructions are specific to this piece of kitchen equipment. you could probably cook the rice in water on top of the stove, then bake it in a covered casserole in the oven for about an hour to approximate the same thing, but I wouldn’t know for sure.
sweet rice pudding
1 cup uncooked Japanese sweet rice (sometimes called mochigome or sho-chiku-bai)
water to cook
add the amount of water called for by your rice cooker. cook on the white rice cycle, and when finished, take the cooking bowl out of the cooker and cool it a bit.
2 cups whole milk, + .5 cup set aside for after cooking
cinnamon (1/2-1 teaspoon, depending on strength and how you want it to taste)
1/4 teaspoon or more salt
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 cup currants
add the milk, cinnamon, salt, maple syrup and currants to the rice in the bowl, and stir. taste and adjust seasoning, if needed. pop the bowl back into the rice cooker and set for porridge. it’s done when the little song plays! stir in the last .5 cup of milk and serve with a bit of brown sugar or more maple syrup.