Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Yakitori is not yucky

Some Japanese words just don't sound so good in English. A whole slew of my favorite foods fall into this category, since I love grilled food and most grilled food in Japanese start with 'yaki', unfortunately pronounced almost like 'yucky'. Yakitori (grilled chicken), yakiniku (grilled meat, usually in the form of beef), yakisoba, yaki-this, yaki-that.

Yaki items are not yucky.

I've had such long and hard days, my mind is wandering...

yakitori2
I had a lovely kushiyaki (skewered grilled) dinner with Anne and the Papa Bear last weekend. I marinated the chicken for a couple of hours in homemade teriyaki sauce, popped it on the grill, and sprinkled dried sansho herbs. I love the bittersweet scent and flavor of sansho, which I haven't been able to find here. I got myself several sealed packages in Kyoto a while back. It's bitter, sweet, refreshing, energizing, appetizing, and a little bit spicy. The flavors are very strong, and sansho is usually added to rich dishes to keep the taste interesting and prevent epicurean boredom during the onslaught of oil and/or grease. My dark meat chicken definitely stayed extra interesting with the sansho sprinkles!

The skewer you see in the background? That's a sneak preview for tomorrow's post! One of the best culinary matches I've ever made! It was so simple, and yet so lusciously delicious that we had it again last night...

3 comments:

The Papa Bear said...

The sansho herb tastes very distinctively. It has a "duality" that immediately asserts itself upon contact - it bullies the tongue with a coolness that makes it recoil and contract; it equally compensates for that rude violation by permeating the entire and expanding breadth of the tongue with tiny bombardments of arousing and titillating needles of differing tastes, which are so penetrating, distinctive and invigorating individually that, collectively, they coerce the tongue into a complete, overwhelming and sweet submission....

Whoa..... Brrrr....

Was it good for you too?

What's happening to me.....

Anonymous said...

is that bacon wrapped shrimp? bacon makes everything better!

Alice said...

Yikes, Papa! What was in the sansho??????

And my dear anonymous poster,

Yes, yes, it is! And bacon = goodness!