Tuesday 2 July 2013

Tuesday 2nd July - Recipes for Sons and Fathers; Teriyaki Chicken

This was a bit of a success last night:

packet of skinless boneless chicken thighs (I buy Waitrose because I like to be under the impression that the chickens have had a reasonable existence)

jar of Wagamama sweet teriyaki stir fry or marinade sauce

sugar, soy sauce (33%), rice wine (12.5%), water, cornflour
I think I might have a go at concocting my own version.

packet of udon noodles (but the ordinary Chinese ones would be nice too)

vegetables to stir fry.




Read the instructions on the packet. Work out the timings; add a few minutes extra for the water to come to the boil and assume that they may take a minute longer than they say (or a minute less - you can never be sure). One bundle or nest of noodles per person is a generous sufficiency.
Once you know how long it will take, you will know when to start the noodle-cooking-process, in relation to the chicken taking 25-30 mins in the oven.


Set oven to 180 fan.

Find a baking tray which will hold all the thighs and line with foil or baking paper. Trim excess fat off thighs (chicken, not your own) and lob them into the tray. Tip enough of the contents of jar over thighs to make a generous mess. Muddle everything about with your fingers until thighs are covered (chicken - keep up. Yours should be fine if you were careful or wore an apron) and then lay thighs out flatly rather than rolled up in tray. Wash hands. Bung in oven if it is at temperature. Oh, do I need to explain everything? The oven needs to be at temperature, the chicken, in the tray, goes into the oven, the hands get washed. Work it out for yourself!. Set timer for 25 mins. That, at least, is reasonably unambiguous.


If you bought a packet of stir fry veg, or are planning to use some frozen stir fry mix, then read the destructions on the packet.


prepare and thinly slice an appropriate amount of veg for stir frying. You want a selection of onion-ish veg (onion, spring onion or leek), colourful veg (peppers or thinly sliced carrot), leafy veg (thinly sliced cabbage), exotic veg (bean sprouts NOT TINNED! pak choi which is a sort of cabbage), left-over veg (anything else - tomatoes, courgettes, celery, broccoli, cauliflower - whatever isn't running away from you in a panic in the fridge). Just keep an eye on the quantity. Enough is as good as a feast. Try not to get carried away. Or if you don't have enough, chuck in some frozen peas or whatever. 

You can make it more interesting with chilli or ginger or garlic according to taste.

By the time you have chopped the veg or read the instructions, it is probably time to cook them; this takes about 5 minutes. If you are using packet or frozen veg, do what they say. If you are using real, raw, chopped by your, self veg, then heat a dollop of oil in a suitable wok or frying pan. Start with the onion, let it have a few minutes to get going, then add the other veg. Stir it around every few minutes. (Your noodles should be underway by now. Just saying).

When the timer goes for the chicken

have a look and see if it is cooked. There was a lot of cooking liquid in the pan for mine; I tipped a good deal of this into the stir fry, then returned the chicken to the oven  for a another five minutes anyway, while I let the stir fry get a little over-excited and drained the noodles.

Then I served it up, added soy sauce, salt and pepper to taste, and we ate it up. We had just one chicken thigh apiece, and the others are tucked up in the freezer with the rest of the juices from the baking tray.

Or, you could, of course, go to Wagamama and eat their version. Which is very, very good.

ginger chicken udon
beef teriyaki lettuce wraps
 We tried their lettuce wraps. They were good too, but that inviting, creamy-looking sauce is RED HOT and will clear your sinuses in no time flat. You have been warned. We discovered that the hard way.

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