Sesame Chicken Yakatori with Wasabi Ginger Glaze
Yakatori got its name from the Japanese words "yaki" for grilled and "tori" for poultry or chicken and refers to small pieces of marinated, grilled chicken. But, since we've already taken some liberties with traditional recipes in making this version, you can also make them with pork. Yakatoris are probably the most popular snack food in Japan and make a great appetizer hot off the grill. The glaze can be prepared 3 to 4 hours in advance, be refrigerated, and then warmed to room temperature before using.
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
8 green onions, cut in 2-inch pieces
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
15 bamboo skewers
1 cup rice wine or dry sherry
2/3 cup mirin (sweet sake, available in Asian markets)
3 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons minced ginger
2 tablespoons minced green onion, including some of the greens
1 tablespoon Asian chile oil (available in Asian markets)
2 teaspoons wasabi paste
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon Togarishi Seasoning, commercial or see recipe, below
1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
Cut the chicken into either 1-inch cubes or cut crosswise into pieces 2-inches long and 1/2-inch thick and wide. Thread the chicken strips crosswise in a S-shape on the skewers alternating with the onion.
Combine all the glaze ingredients in a saucepan and over a medium high heat and bring to just boiling. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the sauce is reduced by half and forms a glaze, about 5 minutes.
Grill the yakatori over a medium heat for 2 minutes per side or until slightly browned. Brush liberally with the glaze and continue cooking for a couple more minutes per side until the chicken is done.
Brush the yakatoris a final time with the glaze, sprinkle with the sesame seeds and serve.