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Thursday, October 1, 2009

Teriyaki? More like TeriYUCKY, amiright?

I came to a sad realization yesterday - I do not like bottled teriyaki sauce. It's only sad to me because it was a staple in the house when I was a kid. Sweet and salty, it was the best thing since ranch dressing and we used to use it as a condiment on anything plain that my mother served up.

As an adult, I don't really use it very much. It has a ton of sodium for one thing, and I did go through a long period of making almost everything from scratch. However, the kids like it (of course) and so once it a while it comes into play. Hibachi at our favorite Japanese place, for example. I just can't eat it any more. It just tastes like salt to me, no matter what I do with it or whatever small amount I use.

Last night's dinner was supposed to be Teriyaki Chicken Kabobs w/ Rice Balls, but things got a little hectic after school and I just didn't feel like taking the time to make the kabobs and the rice balls, or to stand at the grill and wait for the kabobs to be done. So, I deconstructed the planned meal and made Teryaki Chicken with Pineapple and Broccoli, and Sushi Rice. The kids loved it, and I ate it because I was hungry. I think this goes into the repetoire under Things I Cook For The Kids On Nights When I Have Alternate Dinner Plans.

This is super easy. We had leftovers, so I guess it would probably serve 6 depending on how big your family's average portion is.


Teriyaki Chicken With Pineapple & Broccoli

2# Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts, cubed
1 lg can chunk pineapple -or- 1 fresh pineapple, cubed
2 crowns broccoli, chopped - or- 1 bag pre-cut
1 bottle teriyaki sauce (I like Trader Joe's Island Soyaki, or any other pineapple teriyaki)
1T cornstarch
1/4 c water
1 bunch scallions, sliced
cooking oil (2 - 3 T)

How I did it;

Marinate the chicken in about 1/2 the bottle of teriyaki. I put it together in the morning and it was perfect by the time I started cooking at 6. Drain the marinade right before cooking the chicken, and discard.

Get a wok or a large skillet REALLY hot. The best thing that pro kitchen work ever taught me was that if you don't get the pan super-hot for a stir fry, you end up with a soggy mess instead. When the pan is smoking hot, add the oil and then quickly add the chicken cubes. Brown the chicken on all sides, then add the broccoli. Add a splash of water and cover for 1 minute to steam the broccoli a little. Uncover, then add the pineapple. Allow the chicken to cook through, stirring a couple of times. Add the rest of the bottle of teriyaki. It should come to an almost immediate boil.

Whisk the cornstarch into the 1/4 water to make a slurry, then stir the slurry into the wok. Keep stirring, this will thicken the sauce and you don't want it to stick and burn. (about 1 minute)

Toss in the scallions, remove from heat, and serve with rice.

I made sushi rice, with black sesame seeds. It looked pretty.

Someday I will find my camera cord and add photos to the blog. Someday.

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