Chicken wing “Teba” Gyoza 手羽餃子

japanese cake

This dish must have been invented after I left Japan. It is a wonderful dish except for being rather fatty or, if I borrow the expression from the Japanese food critic who appears on Iron Chef America, “too oily”. We first had this in a small Yakitori place (now defunct) run by a middle-aged husband and wife team, on a narrow alley way near the downtown “Yon-chome” 4丁目 intersection in Sapporo 札幌 some time ago while we were visiting Japan. Essentially this dish is a Japanese sausage with the skin of chicken wings as the casing. After removing the bones from the chicken wing, stuff the wing part with the pork gyoza mixture (leaving the wing tip as a handle so that you can hold it while you eat). Somehow, this dish reminds me of a “Turducken“. The original recipe is to deep fry this to make it really deadly. This time, I followed the original way of cooking but I promise I will work on making this less deadly by either baking it in a high temp oven or grilling it. If I am successful you will see it in my future postings.

Chicken wings: I remove the drummetts (use for another dish) but leave the wing tips. Using a small knife, separate the meat around the two bones (equivalent to the “ulna” and “radius”, if you would like to know) and pull the skin and meat down to expose the joint. I grab the ends of the bones and rotate and wiggle until both come off the joint. Please take care not to cut or break the skin. Now you have created the pocket.

Gyoza stuffing: This is the usual pork stuffing for gyoza. I made much more than I intend to use for this dish so that I could make regular gyoza later. We happened to grow garlic chives in our herb garden, so I added that as well. As usual, I used the trimming from a pork tenderloin and, by using a chef’s knife, chopped up finely into ground pork (probably 1 cup). I added chopped garlic chives (probably 3 tbs), blanched and finely chopped cabbage (4 tbs), finely chopped scallion (2 tbs), crushed garlic (1 fat clove), grated ginger (1 tsp), salt (1/2 tsp), black pepper (1/2 tsp), mirin (2 tbs), soy sauce (1 tbs), sesame oil (2-3 tbs) and knead by hand until it become nicely elastic and bound together.

Assembly and frying: Stuff the wing pocket with the gyoza mixture and close it by inserting a tooth pick through the skin at the opening. I shallow fry as usual rather than deep dry. At about 160F (I actually did not measure but used the stick-bamboo-chopsticks-in-oil method as usual) for 5-7 minutes turning several times. I took them out of the oil. I then cranked up the flame and, briefly, re-fried to make the skin crispy. I cut into the fattest one to make sure the pork is thoroughly cooked (which it was).

My wife made baked green beans (just coat them with olive oil, salt and black pepper and spread in one layer in the cookie sheet and bake them for 30 minutes at 350F), which is the best way to cook green beans. They become very sweet and better than boiling or steaming. So, I added the green beans as a side after I took the first picture.

This dish is very good, although the skin was “oily” and could have been crispier. Since it is a type of sausage with a Japanese twist, it will go well with a cold beer but we had this with a red wine, Brookdale Cab Sauv from Napa, to counteract the effect of the fat.

Comments on Facebook