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Yakitori - Japanese chicken skewers from the grill

Yakitori - Japanese barbecue skewers recipe | ORYOKI

Yakitori (Jap. 焼き鳥) literally translates to "grilled poultry", revealing the type of meat used in these popular skewers. In typical Japanese fashion, you won't find large pieces of meat on the grill; instead, small pieces are skewered and then grilled. The first mentions of Yakitori date back to the year 1643. At that time, the dish was documented with meat from wild birds, skewered, grilled, and then seasoned. In today's traditional recipe, chicken breast fillet is commonly used, but thighs, wings, and even offal are also popular choices. Other types of meat and fish work equally well, and you can also create delicious skewers with purely vegetarian ingredients like vegetables. If you stroll through the streets of Japan, you'll likely encounter the beloved chicken Yakitori as a form of street food, sold as a convenient hand-held snack.

Yakitori Streetfood

The Japanese, sweet and spicy marinade sets the tone

But not only the meat plays a crucial role as an ingredient in the traditional recipe. The marinade gives the Yakitori skewer a Japanese touch and enhances the flavor. For those with enough time to prepare the Yakitori skewers, marinating the meat several hours before consumption in the Yakitori sauce can make Japanese chicken skewers a BBQ favorite! Key components of the marinade include the two rice wines Mirin and Sake. Sake has a higher alcohol content and is less sweet than Mirin, but both are commonly used together in Japanese cuisine.

Yakitori recipe for 4 persons

No. of persons4 personsNo. of persons
Preparation time a few hours Preparation time
Total Timeca. 20 minutesTotal Time
Level of difficultyeasyLevel of difficulty
Dishmain mealDish
Caloriesca. 500kcal per portionCalories
Kitchenware Kitchenware
Charcoal or gas grill , Cutting board , Kinfe , Serving plate
List of ingredients
800-1000g Chicken breast fillet (ca. 200-250g per person)
3 garlic cloves
200ml japanese soy sauce
200ml mirin
1-2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoons sesame oil
100ml sake
one piece ginger
1/2 bunch spring onions
some sesame
soaked wooden skewers or similar skewers that can be pierced through the meat (Info: Soak wooden skewers in water overnight. They absorb the water and thus do not burn on the grill. The skewers can then be easily removed from the grilled food.)
Kochende Miss Oryoki
Step 1

Peel the garlic cloves and crush them with a garlic press. Cut the piece of ginger into small pieces and add it to a bowl along with the sugar, crushed garlic, soy sauce, sesame oil, mirin, and sake. Stir until the sugar is dissolved.

Step 2

Wash the meat and cut it into approximately 20g cubes. Place it in the bowl with the sauce and mix it with the savory-sweet marinade. Let it marinate in the refrigerator for a few hours before putting the meat on the grill.

Step 3

Time to grill! Thread the wet wooden skewers with the meat and place them on the grill. For chicken breast fillet, the grilling time over an open flame is about 3 minutes per side.

Step 4

Wash the spring onions and cut them into thin slices. Garnish your chicken yakitori with some sesame and serve them hot.

Info: For those who don't have time to marinate the Yakitori skewers several hours in advance, you can brush the chicken with the sauce while it is grilling.

Enjoy your meal!

Japanese recipes read in the magazine »
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