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Looking to chow down on some tasty yakitori in Melbourne? Friend, you’ve come to the right place.
Yakitori is a much-loved Japanese dish, desired for its succulent flavours, delightful texture, and, of course, that mouth-watering sauce. If you’ve not a clue as to what yakitori is, fear not; we will hold your hand presently and, in a mere two paragraphs, quickly run you through the background of such a wonderful snack.
The dish is, at the basic level, grilled chicken on a skewer. No matter how sheltered your existence has been prior to feasting your eyes upon this blog post, we’re fairly sure you’ve tasted chicken from a skewer before. So what’s the big deal? Whether its satay in Sri Lanka or Souvlaki in Greece, cultures all over the world are mad for the practice of skewering chicken and grilling it to flavour-town. Well, to start, the skewer itself is a little bit fancy, usually crafted from bamboo or steel. Once skewered, the chicken is grilled over a charcoal fire, and a delicious tare sauce is added.
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Further differences in the cooking process come from the early origins of the dish; typically yakitori would be cooked on portable charcoal grill, which reflects the background of yakitori as street food. Nowadays, there are devices in many Japanese homes specifically for cooking yakitori. Regardless of whether cooking at home or away, it is typical for the chicken to be diced into small chunks before grilling. In terms of flavour and texture, charcoal grills undeniably give a far richer texture and flavour thanks to the smoke and the higher levels of heat lending a crunchy texture to the skin.
Yakitori skewers for all!
Yakitori is as versatile as it is tasty, and can be seasoned to taste either sweet and salty or savoury. If opting for sweet and salty, diners will receive their yakitori glazed with tare sauce – a Japanese favourite made from mirin, sake, sugar and soy sauce, which tastes just as amazing as all those ingredients sound. The options don’t end there though; everybody is different, and in line with the diner’s preference, yakitori may be served with spices including black pepper, wasabi, cayenne, shichimi, and loads more.
Roam across Japan like the wondering Ronin of old, and you will find many an izakaya serving up yakitori. In fact, it’s one of their staple menu items (and one of ours, too!) However, outside these cosy eat-and-drinkeries, yakitori is also dished up in restaurants and specialised, dedicated shops called ‘yakitori-ya’. Elsewhere, the snack is sold at street food markets, festivals and sporting events, loved by chefs for its easy-to-prepare nature, and loved by diners for its succulent, bursting flavours.
If you fancy having a go at preparing yakitori yourself at home, you can check out a pretty great recipe here. The possibilities for improvisation with this dish really are limitless, and yakitori can come in many forms. Chicken breast meat, thigh, meatballs, wings, and far more besides can all be used in cooking; everything tastes good on a skewer!
Of course, there are always going to be those days when you don’t fancy cooking yourself. And on those occasions? Our restaurant can provide! With an extensive menu of tasty snacks and delicious drinks, it’s our mission to provide you with an authentic Japanese dining experience. So if you’ve been searching high and low to find the best yakitori in Melbourne, don’t make your decision until you’ve been to Gyoza Gyoza!