After putting in a long, hard day of work, there’s nothing that lifts the spirit quite like stopping by a pub for a cold one and couple of yakitori chicken skewers. Of course, your regular after-work pub might now be inaccessible due to quarantine and social distancing.
But fear not, because Japanese technology company Thanko has a solution with its Homemade Yakitori Maker 2.
The Homemade Yakitori Maker 2 sells for 6,280 yen here through Thanko’s online shop. When our box arrived, the first thing we did was open it up and lay out all the parts.
The core unit is a heat-cooking shaft with slots in its base to insert metal skewers, and there’s also a removable black base cover to catch any drippings and make for easy cleaning. Finally, there’s a sturdy glass shield that goes around the outside of whatever you’re cooking. You’ll notice there’s no top to the cover, though, but that’s okay because the Homemade Yakitori Maker 2 promises to let you do all the indoor skewer-cooking you want without producing any smoke.
Since the machine lets you cook 10 different skewers simultaneously, we decided to branch out from just chicken and also picked up some bacon, sausages, and negi (green onion).
The skewers’ tips are very sharp, so sticking the ingredients on them was no problem. However, you’ll want to keep the meat toward the center of the rod, not at either end, for reasons we’ll explain later on.
Once you’ve done all your slicing and sticking, it’s time to insert the skewers into the base of the Homemade Yakitori Maker 2. Since the skewers slide in pointy side-down, you’ll want to leave a little buffer space around their tips.
Now we were ready to start cooking, so we turned on the machine by twisting the dial at its base, which also functions as a timer for cooking times up to one hour. As the machine powered up, its core began to glow with orange light.
But the big surprise came when the skewers began rotating on their own.
After about 10 minutes, the meat’s outer layer began to turn an enticing golden brown, and the occasional popping of a pocket of oil enticed us all the more. Just as promised, though, the Homemade Yakitori Maker 2 makes no smoke at all.
After 30 minutes, our yakitori were ready to eat. Well, more accurately, most of our yakitori were ready to eat. Remember how we said it’s important to arrange your pre-cooking skewers with most of their meat in the center? That’s because if you give in to your gluttony like we did and cram meat all the way to the utmost top section of the skewers, it’ll be too far away from the unit’s core to get enough heat to cook.
▼ You can even cook wings with the Homemade Yakitori Maker 2.
Flavor-wise, our batch of Homemade Yakitori Maker 2 skewers tasted as good as what you’d get in a standard Tokyo pub, and we were so totally satisfied that before we knew it, we’d eaten them all.
Like we mentioned above, the whole thing breaks down into individual parts for easy washing, so now we’re ready to repeat he process all over again.
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