Monday, October 23, 2017

Japanese Honey Teriyaki Chicken Meatballs - Fat Reduced and yet so Tasty and Juicy!

Have you been trying to cook healthy food for your family?

So, have you tried doing healthy swaps like...

  • from fatty meat to lean meat? 
  • from deep frying to pan frying?
  • Or from more meat to less meat with more vegetable?

Have you tried using lean chicken mince to cook healthy food and it always turns out to be dry and disappointing?

I know this feeling.

I heard an accidental confession from my son and husband once when I used lean chicken mince to make a healthy chicken spam at here for our Rilakkumma sushi. The bear sushi were cute and fun to eat but just not moist enough for my fussy son and husband. Hmmm...

No worries today because I like to share with you this simply amazing down-to-earth chicken meatball recipe. A recipe that we truly love because it can make low fat mince chicken meatballs always so tasty, moist, juicy and yummy!

Guess what? The magic ingredient is actually the firm tofu!!!

Japanese teriyaki chicken meatballs low fat moist healthy
Japanese Honey Teriyaki Chicken Meatballs
Fat Reduced and yet so Tasty and Juicy!

I have cooked these fat reduced chicken meatballs many many many many many times. Simply because this recipe never fails me and always produce lean chicken meatballs that always so succulent!

Japanese teriyaki chicken meatballs low fat moist healthy
This is my first time cooking these Japanese teriyaki chicken meatballs.
Totally amazed that these lean meatballs are so delicious!!!

Then, I cooked these meatballs again, again and again... And they always turned to be so juicy!

Then, I thought... If the chicken meatball recipe recipe is so amazingly good, why not share it? So, here you go and I hope that you will like this down-to-earth chicken meatball recipe as much as I do.

Meatballs without the teriyaki sauce
Plain but still juicy
Japanese teriyaki chicken meatballs low fat moist healthy
Meatballs with easy homemade honey teriyaki sauce
Extra extra extra tasty, juicy and yummy!!!

Here's a quick video showing how I cooked these juicy lean meatballs. It's easy!!! Try it and you will surprise to realise that the magic ingredient is actually the firm tofu!!!

Here's the recipe.

Makes about 20-22 medium to serve 4 as mains

For the meatballs:
300g firm tofu
500g chicken mince - ok to use low fat lean skinless mince
4-5 spring onions, sliced
2 tsp finely grated ginger
2 eggs, roughly beaten
1/2 tsp salt or more to taste
freshly ground black pepper to season

adequate cooking oil for shallow frying

For the homemade sweet and sour honey teriyaki sauce:
2 tbsp (30ml) soy sauce
2 tbsp (30ml) rice vinegar or less if you prefer your sauce to be less sour
3 tbsp (45ml) mirin
2 tsp corn flour
3 tbsp (45ml) honey

extra finely sliced spring onions to serve

To cook the meatballs:
Drain off any liquid from the tofu packaging. Remove tofu from packaging and place it on 3-4 paper towels. Wrap the towel around the tofu and let it blot for about 15 mins.

Using your hands, break tofu into small crumbly pieces. Add chicken mince, spring onions, ginger, eggs, salt and pepper into the tofu crumbs and mix until well combined.

Preheat oven to 150°C. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Set aside.

Heat about 1-2 cm level of oil in a non ­stick flat frying pan with medium heat. When the oil is hot enough, use a cookie scoop with about 1 tbsp capacity or two large tablespoon to scoop and drop round balls of meatball mixture into the heated frying pan with about 2-3 cm away from each meatballs. Cook in batches if necessary. Tip: Do not shape the meatballs too big as their insides might not be able to cook and also not too small because small meatballs are less juicy.

When the bottom is nicely browned, flip them over and cook until both sides are nicely browned. Place the cooked meatballs on paper towel to blot any excess oil for about 5-10 mins and arrange them into the prepared tray and cover the meatball with a large piece of foil. Bake for 5-10 min or until cooked thoroughly through but it is important not to bake these juicy meatball for more than 10 mins.

To make the sweet and sour honey teriyaki sauce:
While baking the meatballs, combine all the teriyaki sauce ingredients except honey in a small saucepan or a heatproof microwavable bowl and mix until the cornflour is no longer lumpy and well incorporated. Then add in the honey - It's ok if the honey is not fully dissolved into the mixture.

Place either the saucepan on low heat or microwavable bowl of sauce in the microwave with multiple short pulses (20-30 secs) of low power, cook and stir sauce until it is thick, transparently-looking (not milky-looking), smooth and glossy. Set aside to cool slightly. When the sauce is cooled, it will thicken further.

To assemble and serve, brush the meatballs with generous amount of sauce and enjoy!

Happy Cooking
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  1. yummm, what can I use instead of mirin?

    1. Hi Nammi, For a non-alcoholic option, you can substitute 3 tbsp mirin with 2 tbsp vinegar plus 1 tsp caster sugar. Cheers!

  2. This looks great! I can already taste this in my mouth! My favorite snack from the chain Tori Q is their chicken balls and I'd love to make a version at home sometime!

  3. Is it ok to bake it in oven straight away as opposed to pan frying it first?

    1. I prefer not because baking (instead of pan frying) these meatballs will make the meatballs a lot more drier.

  4. This was delicious. I made it tonight and my family is eating it up. Might need to do a double batch next time around. Thanks again for sharing.