Miso chicken (tori misoyaki)
The last recipe in my chicken mini-marathon is this so-simple yet tasty miso marinated and pan-fried or grilled chicken. I've again used chicken thighs, but this works well with breast meat as well as other meats such as pork and beef, and fish too. Sweet-salty miso marinades like this are quite standard in Japanese cooking. (See New Potatoes with Sweet-Spicy Miso, over on Just Hungry.)
Recipe: Miso chicken
For every 1 medium to large chicken thigh (or 2 small chicken thighs, totalling about 70-80g / 2.5-3 oz or so) boneless chicken, use:
- 1 Tbs. miso (I used a mild white miso, see notes below)
- 1 Tbs. sake or sweet sherry
- 1/3 to 1/2 tsp. brown sugar
You can use skinned or unskinned chicken here. Cut the meat into bite-size pieces. Mix the marinating ingredients, and spread over the meat (your hands are the best tools for this). Wrap tightly and let marinate in the refrigerator overnight. If you don't have time for this, let it marinate at least 10-15 minutes, and massag the meat a bit with your hands to help the flavors permeate.
To cook, heat up a non-stick frying pan or a cast iron grill; brush the latter thinly with a little cooking oil to prevent sticking. Panfry or grill over medium heat for about 4 minutes on each side, until the chicken is cooked through and the miso is darkly caramelized.
Let cool before packing into your bento box.
I have many more bento-friendly chicken recipes, but I'll give them a rest for a while and turn my attention to other types of ingredients. In the next few posts I'll show how I use these different chicken recipes in bento boxes.
[Update: Notes] I've gotten some notes from people, and seen some blog posts, about the miso flavor being too strong. The key here is the saltiness of the miso you are using. If it is a very salty type, you will want to cut down on the amount of miso - even down to 1 tsp. per chicken thigh rather than 1 Tbs. Taste your miso - if it's mild enough that you can probably eat it as-is, or maybe spread on a slice of cucumber (one of my favorite snacks, by the way) then use the amount specified. If it's too salty, cut down on the amount.