Chicken Tsukune

– Chef Marc Matsumoto’s Recipes for Shochu –

 2 tablespoons sugar
 2 tablespoons mirin
 2 tablespoons soy sauce
 2 tablespoons sake (for sauce)
 410 grams boneless chicken-thigh (cut into small pieces)
 20 grams scallions – white part (chopped)
 1 tablespoon sake (for chicken)
 1 teaspoon potato starch
 1/4 teaspoon salt
 1 small dried shiitake mushroom
 2 egg yolks

To make the sauce, add the sugar, mirin, soy sauce, and sake to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Continue to boil until the sauce becomes thick.

Put the chicken thighs, scallions, sake, potato starch and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Use a grater to grate the dried shiitake into the food processor.

Process the chicken until it’s finely chopped but not so much that it turns into a uniform paste. You will need to start and stop it scraping down the sides of the bowl a few times.

Heat a frying pan over medium heat until hot and then add a bit of oil. Shape the chicken into 6 oblong patties, adding them to the pan as you go. Fry the patties until golden brown on one side and then flip and fry the other side until golden brown.

Using tongs to hold each patty and, pass two bamboo skewers through the center of each one. Place them on a grill or under a broiler and cook until the chicken registers 71 degrees Celsius on a thermometer.

Brush plenty of sauce on both sides of the chicken and return to the grill to caramelize the glaze. Be careful as the sugar will burn quickly.

Serve the tsukune with shichimi togarashi and a raw egg yolk.