Don’t feel like cooking? Want something a little different for lunch or dinner? Time to try Benihanas. Take a look at their menu and you will be hard-pressed to decide what suits your fancy. Benihanas is a restaurant chain that is one of the top Asian eateries around. Their highly-skilled teppanyaki chefs prepare your order with skill and flair with a culinary performance, not just a meal. You can choose between a teppanyaki meal or a kitchen prepared dish at Benihanas.
While Benihana’s menu is full of great choices, one that you might enjoy is their Shrimp on the Grill. They specialize in teppanyaki/hibachi cooking and shrimp is the perfect entrée for this type of cuisine. This way of cooking is a great choice to prepare seafood with both great flavor and style.
What is Hibachi or Teppanyaki Cooking?
Hibachi and Teppanyaki cooking are very similar. Both cook food using an open flame. Whether using a hibachi or teppanyaki, guests have the opportunity to enjoy watching a skilled chef prepare Japanese food in front of them. The chefs get to show off their wonderful knife and grill skills while cooking the customer a fresh meal on the spot.
In the United States, it is important to note that when most people use the word “hibachi” they are usually referring to teppanyaki-style cooking. The two types of cooking may be different in other countries but in the States, the words are fairly interchangeable. The grills at Benihanas use an iron griddle with a smooth surface allowing guests to watch the food preparation. While some are electric, teppanyaki grills typically use propane as a heat source. This tradition goes back over the decades as teppanyaki chefs began to show their talents in the early 1900s.
Cooking Seafood on Hibachi-Teppanyaki Grill
There is nothing better than the taste of seafood on the grill. While a barbeque is great, hibachi is even better. Why seafood on the grill? Because the flavor that cooking on the grill brings out is far beyond the food you will cook in your oven on the stovetop. Seafood cooked over an open flame is just plain delicious. Some people don’t like seafood that is too fishy but don’t worry – there are other great seafood options at Benihana that are truly enhanced by the grill. Shrimp is one of those and Benihana does it perfectly.
Whether you want to cook fish, scallops, octopus, calamari, or shrimp, doing it on a grill is simple. Picks your sides, flavors, and protein and you are ready to go. Using a hibachi mean your meal gets cooked all at once rather than in multiple pans. One-stop cooking for a quick and tasty meal.
One benefit of cooking seafood on a grill is that it retains a lot of its original flavor. It is not covered up with excessive seasoning or oil. Because the grill is steel (or non-stick if you are using one at home), they do not require a lot of additional oil when cooking. This means your final food product is healthier and maintains its natural nutrition and flavor. Using light seasoning and fresh ingredients beat cooking with prepackaged, frozen, or prepared foods. Using wine, vinegar, soy sauce, and the basics such as salt and pepper for seasoning let the seafood’s natural flavor and texture shine through. Garlic (and sometimes onion) is used heavily with hibachi. Adding these ingredients to seafood enhances the already great grilled flavor.
Once the grill is hot and you’ve decided on shrimp or another seafood, it’s time to choose the rest of your meal. A side of vegetables? Maybe a yakiniku sauce as well? There is a great sauce you can add that is made of soy sauce, sake, mirin, sugar, garlic, juice, and sesame seeds. Add it and maybe some steamed chukamen or udon noodles and your grilled food becomes a Japanese culinary experience.
Steps for Cooking Shrimp on the Grill at Benihanas
- Their grill is hot, between 400-450° F. This offers quick and efficient cooking.
- Oiling the surface of the grill means the shrimp and additional ingredients won’t stick.
- They may put shrimp in some soy sauce for flavor or simply put on the grill alone for three to four Once the shrimp are cooking, the chef may add a little more oil or seasoning if needed.
- The shrimp are flipped and, in another few minutes, they are ready.
- While the shrimp are cooking, your chef may add vegetables so they can cook alongside the shrimp for three to five
- If you have chosen to have a side with your shrimp, some pre-steamed noodles may be added as well.
Once everything is cooked, the meal is put on plates and each person can add sauce to their taste.
Whether you have had enough of cooking for the week or you have a craving for grilled shrimp, Benihanas offers great entrées at a good price. Plus, you can watch your meal being grilled right in front of you. Going to Benihanas not only offers you a filling and flavorful meal but a dining experience that is interactive and enjoyable. While it is easy to hit a drive-through for a burger and fries, going to Benihanas takes your dining experience to the next level. Shrimp made right in front of you on the grill is a fresh, tasty event.
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