Okay, quick story time.
One of my brother’s friends, Rabha, is literally the queen of Middle Eastern cooking. Every time she visits, she will without a doubt bring food…and I’m not not talking a cute veggie tray or bakery rolls. I’m talking homemade from the heart food — savoury pastries, the greatest toum to ever grace my lips, the most incredible hummus, and last time? She brought enough shish taouk for a small village AND WE WERE NOT MAD ABOUT IT.
So ever since then? I’ve had to urge to try it at home. With the greatest form of flattery intended, I tried my best to replicate the tender and citrusy grilled chicken skewers with a healthy helping of hummus on the side and WOW. Results were incredible!!
- 3-4 chicken breasts, cut into 1inch chunks
Varies on how much you’re making.
- Fresh juice of 1 orange,
- 1 tsp of salt
- 1/2 tsp of black pepper
- 1 cup of plain yogurt
- Glug of of olive oil
- 1 tbsp of ground coriander
- 5 cloves of garlic minced
+ wooden skewers, soaked for a few hours in water
[ Since chicken is a lean protein, you want a marinade that will be sure to add flavour but also keep the meat tender and moist once cooked.
Creating a marinade with a dairy product like yogurt, citrus juice from the oranges, and olive oil will do just that. ]
Place your chicken pieces into a large ziploc bag. Building marinades inside bags is my favourite easy kitchen trick because 1 it’s way less of a mess to clean up afterwards, and 2) the marinade can coat the protein easily by a simple shake of the bag.
Place all marinade ingredients into the bag, seal firmly, and then massage the marinade into the chicken. Place in the refrigerator for a minimum of 3 hours, or overnight if cooking the next day.
Once done marinading, remove the chicken and place on the skewers. About 5/per skewer. Try to put the same size pieces of chicken on the same skewer for an even cooking time.
Next, fire up the barbecue. You reaaaally want to make sure that the grill has been cleaned properly beforehand and has been slightly oiled with an oil that can handle high temperatures. Although the dairy of the yogurt is an excellent way to trap moisture in the protein, it is very prone to sticking on grills. Ensure that the grill is hot. Hot grates will sear the protein and help it release from the grill easily too.
Cook the skewers for about 6-7 minutes each side. Check one skewer for the doneness of the meat before removing off the grill and setting aside to cool slightly before serving.