Monday, April 18, 2005

KFC with a Japanese Touch!


Gozansho Chicken from KFC

This is a “limited-time-only” menu at KFCs in Japan called “Gozansho chicken.” The name “Gozansho” seems to be the combination of part of the words: “goma (sesame)” “sansho (Japanese sansho pepper)” and “shoyu (soy sauce).” As you can see here, those are the main seasoning ingredients of this Gozansho chicken.

Ever since I saw the TV commercial of this gozansho chicken, I had been wanting to try it so badly. The combination of black sesame seeds and sansho pepper sounded sooooo tempting!


"Gozansho chicken set" (See package)

To be perfectly honest, the package of the chicken reminds me of the paper bag of medicine from the hospital…

"Gozansho chicken set" (See inside)

This was called “Gozansho chicken set” with one piece of gozansho chicken, salad with Japanese-style dressing and 2 small rice balls (white sesame onigiri and green tea flavored
onigiri) for 570 yen (about 5.31 US$). Not bad. The chicken was packed in a paper bag with perforation. You tear it open along the perforation and use the bottom part of the paper bag to hold the chicken piece with while you eat.


I cut the chicken piece in half to see inside

The chicken tasted good…at least when I ate half of the chicken piece while it was warm. I thought the combination of the black sesame seeds and sansho pepper was an excellent one. When I ate the rest of it later after it got cold, however, the surface was harder and the meat was just unpleasantly greasy… and even the flavor of the tangy shansho pepper didn’t help. You know what it’s like when the greasy KFC chicken piece turns cold…


Yaki onigiri (with white sesame seeds/ matcha flavored)

These rice balls look so cute, but the taste was just so-so. They were probably seasoned lightly on purpose, so that they won’t cancel out the taste of the chicken, I guess. BTW, these are “yaki-onigiri (lightly grilled rice ball), so definitely need to be eaten while warm.

Anyway, my curiosity is perfectly satisfied now. :)

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BTW, if you are interested in how different their TV commercial is in Japan, check this site. Those are some shots from the gozansho chicken commercial.

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One more thing... My matcha onigiri had these small green bits that looked like roughly chopped edamame (green soybeans).



26 comments:

Anonymous said...

wafu kentucky?? 

Posted by chika

Anonymous said...

Are those veges part of KFC??? Lucky you!!! All we get in Canada are mushy salads.. 

Posted by keona

Anonymous said...

Do onigiri come with the KFC? Is it the same flavor coating on the chicken as in USA? I'd rather the veggies and onigiri than mashed potatoes and biscuits.. 

Posted by Carlyn

Anonymous said...

wow...you're so lucky to have healthy sides from KFC! The salad and rice makes the meal seem less of a guilty pleasure item (fried chicken...T_T;). I'd rather get your combos than the ones in North America. I feel so oily after eating at KFC here. >_< 

Posted by Tea

Anonymous said...

Hi obachan, I wouldn't mind if the batter is tastier than the meat. What impresses me is the paper packaging that does not seem to have any oil spots on it indicating that they fried and drained the chicken well. And that the chicken remains crispy even after a stay in the paper bag.

Does the regular flavour chicken pieces get individually wrapped and sealed too?  

Posted by umami

Anonymous said...

Wow, never tried "lightly grilled" rice ball... I want to try! (Maybe not from KFC, though.) ;-) 

Posted by Jonny

Anonymous said...

Hi Obachan,

I can see why you were dying to try this. It looks good. I haven't eaten at KFC in years, but if they started serving yaki onigiri, tossed salad and gozansho, I'd definitely eat there! 

Posted by Reid

Anonymous said...

Yummy..!! can i use your pictures for one of my post about KFC..?? 

Posted by MrsT

Anonymous said...

> chika --- Yep! “Gozansho” sounds funny, doesn’t it?

> keona --- Yeah, it is called “green salad” on their official site. It’s one of the 3 kinds of salads they have as regular side menu and also included in this “Gozansho chicken combo.”

> Carlyn --- Usually not. I guess those onigiris are only for “Gozansho chicken combos” and will be available for limited time only.

> Tea --- Well, it sure looks healthier, doesn’t it? And if you buy iced green tea or woolong tea instead of coke, it’s even better. Too bad that the drink isn’t included in the combos.

> umami --- You said it right! Yeah, definitely, the batter is tastier than the meat. But it’s not the way they fry and drain the chicken that’s marvelous. It’s the paper bag that’s special. Looks like the paper bag had some kind of special coating or something… Their regular flavor chicken pieces don’t get wrapped like that.

> Jonny --- I wouldn’t recommend their yaki-onigiri, either. It’d be much tastier if you cook good rice yourself and make onigiri with soy sauce or miso basting and grill (roast?) over charcoal heat. To me, something like this photo  is the real yaki onigiri.

> Reid --- Hmmm… since Japanese food is so popular there, I think there’s a possibility that KFCs in Hawaii might try Gozansho chicken, too… What do you think?

> MrsT --- Of course you can. : ) As the creative commons license says, you didn’t even have to ask for my permission as far as you clearly mention that the photos are originally from my site. But thanks for asking, anyway. 

Posted by obachan

Anonymous said...

Mmm, kfc can be good but not at every branch in my experience. It's so fattening but that combination does sound interesting. I just watched a cooking demonstration on tv where a chicken was cut up and soaked in buttermilk (try sour cream or yogurt if you can't get buttermilk which chemically affects the chicken so the meat is moist) and then simply dipped in a flour salt and pepper preparation, dropped into oil for three minutes then baked in the oven to finish the cooking. Have you tried Chicken Marsala, yet? 

Posted by Jennifer

Anonymous said...

It's really interesting to see the KFC delivery in Japan. I was so surprised for the rice balls being presented with the fried Chickens. Never heard about that, and with the flavors of sesame and MATTCHA?! ... cultural shock!!
By the way, the paper wrap is more like the one from local fast food place... rather than an international chain store. **

Anyway it's fun to look at it here. 

Posted by Doris

Anonymous said...

Hi Obachan - I thought I forgot too many Japanese words as I didn't know the word Gozansho! Oh I miss yaki onigiri... 

Posted by keiko

Anonymous said...

Obachan, after reading your post I ordered some gozansho chicken for dinner. I love sanshou with chicken so I knew I would like it.
I'm glad it's a limited-time-only special. Becuase if it was on their regular menu I might have to start eating at KFC more often... 

Posted by Amy

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting your pictures of the KFC chicken! It's so different from where I'm from! I really really love your website, your pictures and your writing style... it seems so real and down to earth! Please keep writing, I read often! :) 

Posted by Carol

Anonymous said...

> Jennifer --- I agree. They can be good but not at every branch. When I tried my gozansho chicken, I thought they used a bit too much flour for coating it… Maybe a new part-timer did it?? I didn’t know sour cream or yogurt can work the same as buttermilk. Thanks for the tip!! :D Anyway, I haven’t tried Chicken Marsala yet and now I’m curious…

> Doris --- Welcome and thanks for your comment :) I guess they experimented so much to come up with a real Japanese style side menu that goes with the gozansho chicken. Those onigiris may not go very well with their other chickens… I think the katsuo-dashi and soy sauce flavor of gozansho chicken as well as the black sesame seeds and sansho pepper are what make onigiris go well with this chicken.

> keiko --- Oh, it’s another rice-related food again. Sorry… ;)

> Amy --- Hi. Glad you tried it and liked it : ) I crave for KFC only about once a month, and I try to keep it that way. I don’t know if it’s only me but I almost always develop a boil on my forehead after eating KFC…

> Carol --- Thank you so much for visiting my blog. :D Your nice comment really made my day. Hope you keep coming back. 

Posted by obachan

Anonymous said...

Hi Obachan,

Oishi-so! Your posts are so great and make me salivate! I wish KFC in London had such yummy options, I pretty much avoid it here...
I'm going to try frying chicken with aoshisho powder in the coating mix, might be quite tasty...or a total disaster, hee hee. Keep up the good work! 

Posted by Vivilicious

Anonymous said...

Hi Vivilicious,
Welcome to my humble kitchen. Aoshiso powder in coating mix sounds interesting. Let me know the result when you try it out : ) 

Posted by obachan

Anonymous said...

Heee... Obachan, you know what? My Malaysian buddies that stay in Japan always complain KFC in Japan taste no good if compared to one in Malaysia. I had only tried fried potato in KFC in Japan before. And yes, it tasted very different from Malaysia KFC. I wonder how bout the chicken.  

Posted by fish fish

Anonymous said...

Mmmm... I want to try KFC in Malaysia and see the difference. It's interesting to find differences in those international franchises, isn't it?  

Posted by obachan

Anonymous said...

I think you can do a successful Chicken Marsala because I am a terrible cook but mine turns out good every time. The ingredients are simple but essential - chicken breast of any size or thickness, flour, salt and pepper, mushroom slices, marsala wine, a lemon and parseley. So sometimes I don't have the last two ingredients and it still works out. I always use chicken breast for the meat and I scanned the recipes from a google search. I am an imprecise cook but here is what I do: clean the chicken (because why should you trust a vendor to do it for you), pat dry, coat in flour salt and pepper, shake off excess (2) heat olive oil (of course butter would enhance the flavor), then place the chicken breasts in and they will brown nicely though will be still raw inside (3)place the mushroom in the skillet and then flip the chicken over to brown on the other side (4) when your pan juices start looking too dry, either add butter if you wish or start the marsala effect i.e. pour half a cup of marsala in to braise the chicken and mushrooms to doneness (I don't always use so much marsala because it gets expensive) - the lemon squirt also deglazes the pan. If you worry that because you didn't use enough liquid to finish the cooking, then warm it in the oven until it is thoroughly cooked. That would be the time to add parseley if you have it. Sometimes buying parsely seems like a luxury too. Notice that this Italian dish does NOT have garlic. I always finish the dish in the oven because I never use enough wine I think and I also I never trust that the heart of the meat is not cooked. We eat this with rice. Many years ago, a classmate took me to eat my first marsala dish served with its gravy over spaghetti and I couldn't decipher what made it so tasty. Everything including the flour that is no longer crispy after the deglazing contributes to the nice taste. Let us know if you try it please.  

Posted by Jennifer

Anonymous said...

Thanks a million, Jennifer! :D
I really want to try it out sometime soon, but I can't find Marsala wine around here. Is any wine OK?  

Posted by obachan

Anonymous said...

The marsala wine has a unique quality. I am not an expert about food but even I can tell. It's brown and seems to go especially well with the mushroom and when I forget to add lemon, it also lends a sour quality. That is all I know I am afraid. I think that definitely Chinese cooking wine which is very cheap would not be right. Maybe the taste is hearty? Anyway, it tastes very "Western" if that makes any sense. I think red wine would be too grapey. Good luck. Let us know what you try next.

(I recently pan seared drumsticks in green curry powder and fish sauce and then baked them in the oven. I think this was an inexpensive method. I hope chicken is not too expensive in Japan. Food looks prohibitively expensive there. Take care of yourself.)
 

Posted by Jennifer

Anonymous said...

mmm chicken 

Posted by bob

Anonymous said...

i feel like chicken tonight
-+ 

Posted by barney

Anonymous said...

> Jennifer --- Hey, I did it! :)

> bob --- Welcome. I guess you're another chicken lover?

> barney --- Welcome. Just go for it! ;) 

Posted by obachan

Celia said...
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