From Marcus Bean’s Chicken – available for pre-order from Amazon now
I love cooking any cuts of chicken on a barbecue, with the extra smoky flavour added to the grilling process. Those with a gas barbecue can add a few smoking chips onto the grill and close the lid for a couple of minutes for similar results.
Here I have combined flavours from two continents – the Japanese flavours of mirin, sake and soy with the Middle Eastern sweet fruits and grains. I love the fact that contemporary cooking has broken down so many barriers to experimenting with new ideas.
BBQ Yakitori chicken with apricot bulgar wheat
Preparation time: 15 minutes, plus 1 hour soaking and marinating, and making the stock
Cooking time: 10 minutes
8 skinless boneless chicken thighs, cut into 2cm/¾in cubes
For the yakitori marinade
250ml/9fl oz/1 cup soy sauce
125ml/4fl oz/½ cup Chicken Stock
125ml/4fl oz/½ cup sake
125ml/4fl oz/½ cup mirin
50g/1¾oz/heaped ¼ cup dark soft
For the apricot bulgar wheat
125g/4½oz/²⁄³ cup bulgar wheat
600ml/21fl oz/scant 2½ cups Chicken Stock, boiling
grated zest and juice of ½ lemon
1 tbsp clear honey
2 tbsp chopped chives
1 red onion, finely sliced
200g/7oz/scant 1²⁄³ cups ready-to-eat dried apricots, finely chopped
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Put the bulgar wheat in a large heatproof bowl, then pour over the hot stock and leave to stand for 25–30 minutes. Soak some wooden skewers in cold water.
2.Meanwhile, put the marinade ingredients in a saucepan over a medium heat and warm gently until the sugar has dissolved, stirring occasionally. Pour into a bowl or jug, leave to cool slightly, then chill in the fridge for 15 minutes.
3.Put the chicken pieces into a bag or bowl and pour over the cooled yakitori marinade. Cover and leave to marinate in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
4. Preheat a griddle pan or barbecue until hot. Thread about 4 pieces of chicken on each skewer. Drain any excess liquid from the wheat, then stir in the lemon zest and juice. Mix in the honey and chives, then the red onion and apricots. Season with salt and pepper to taste, then leave to one side.
5.Cook the skewers for 1–2 minutes on each side until cooked through and tender. Leave to rest for 1 minute, then serve with the apricot bulgar wheat.
“In Chicken I have set out to give you the best of the classic chicken recipes, experimenting with modern and unexpected twists along the way. But I have also created new recipes, exploring great flavour combinations that I hope will help you to revolutionize the way you cook with chicken.”
Out September 2014