Skewered Chicken Grill

Yaki Tori

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


    as a main dish .

Appears in

At Home with Japanese Cooking

At Home with Japanese Cooking

By Elizabeth Andoh

Published 1986

  • About

Here sizzling, succulent chicken bits and scallions are glazed with a sweet soy sauce in their final moments of grilling. Popular in its native land as a grownup’s snack, it can also make a heartier main course if served with a miso-thickened soup, hot white rice, tart salad and assorted pungent pickles.


  • ½ pound chicken meat (dark and light) with skin but no bone
  • ½ pound chicken livers, trimmed of any fat or membrane
  • 6–7 scallion(s)

Glazing sauce

  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon saké (rice wine)
  • 2 tablespoons mirin (syrupy rice wine)
  • ¼ teaspoon shichimi tōgarashi (7-spice hot pepper), optional


You will need about 20 short (6-inch) bamboo skewers or 6 or 7 longer metal brochettes. If you plan to use bamboo, soak them in water for 15 minutes. Preheat your grill or broiler.

Cut the chicken into 1- or 1½-inch cubes and the scallions into 1 or 1½-inch lengths. Cut the livers into approximately the same size. Thread pieces of chicken and scallion alternately on the skewers or brochettes, beginning and ending with a piece of chicken. Now make up some liver skewers in the same way.

Grill or broil the skewered chicken and livers 3–4 inches from medium-high heat for 3–4 minutes. Turn and continue to grill for 5–6 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the soy sauce, sugar, rice wine and syrupy rice wine and simmer, stirring, for 5–6 minutes until the sauce thickens a bit. Then lightly brush some of this glazing sauce on the grilling chicken and livers and continue to grill for a minute or so until the sauce begins to dry. Now brush on more sauce frequently and lavishly and grill for a final few minutes. Sprinkle on a pinch of the 7 hot spices just before serving for a sharper flavor.