Today was a magical day that I spent with my dear friends, the Sameshima family! We (Ok, everyone except me because despite the driver's license that burns a hole in my wallet begging to be used for it's one true calling, I don't drive... well.) drove down to Maryland to eat some deeeeelish, fresh blue crabs. And while I grew up crackin' lobsters and cooking clams from the Long Island Sound, this was my first go at breaking open crabs with my bare hands and a wooden mallet.
Fret not: I ended the excursion with the title of "crab queen" which I think was a fun addition to the day, but will work pretty much not at all in any/every other context. I speedily picked up the crackin' technique mostly because I'm an expedient eater who needs to make my way through all the food before some imaginary, but for some reason looming in my mind, force whisks away my food in a tornado.
We also got this incredible ice cream, by the way, which I think was sorely overshadowed by the crabs. So holler if you ever head down to St. Michael's, Maryland--I got spots for ya.
Now I am pretty much sweating Old Bay out from all of my pores. Apologies if I still smell like celery salt the next time I see you. There are worse scents in this world?
Before I spent the day shucking seafood, I put together this chicken yakitori. I suppose it's only fitting since Yoko has taught me lots of Japanese food kitchen tricks. It turned out amaaaazing and it was so easy that I could cook it while I began the latest season of The Real Housewives of New York. Holy crap. Bethenny is back.
Make sure you use chicken thighs for these. Breasts just don't have the right fattiness and flavor! Also, I think it's key to use the right size skewer. Keep these guys small for quick cooking. The sauce, too, can be used for any teriyaki-style dish you'd like to take a crack at (lol crab pun). Psst: this guy is also super low-carb and/or keto/paleo friendly!
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup mirin
- 3 Tbsp brown sugar
- 3 Tbsp sake
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground ginger
- 2 cloves garlic, smashed
- 1.5 lbs boneless chicken thighs
- 8 scallions
- 12 small skewers
- In a small saucepan, combine soy sauce, mirin, sugar, and sake, ginger, and garlic. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Add in garlic and ginger. Bring to a simmer and cook until sauce is reduced to the point that it coats the back of a spoon. Turn off heat and let cool while you....
- Cut chicken into one-inch pieces, as equally as possible to ensure even cooking once they're threaded onto the skewers. Place in a large bowl. Teriyaki sauce should have cooled enough by now. Pour over chicken, mix, and then cover bowl with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for one hour. If you're grilling or using an open flame and have traditional bamboo skewers, also use this time to soak them in water so that they don't catch fire.
- Chop scallions into two-inch pieces. Remove chicken from fridge. Thread two pieces of chicken with a couple scallions, alternating until a skewer is packed. Continue with remaining chicken, scallions, and skewers.
- Heat grill/grill pan/cast iron skillet to medium-high heat. If not well-seasoned, add a bit of cooking oil to pan/grill pan if desired. Cook skewers for about 4 minutes on each side. Serve immediately!