Limited by time and the scarcity of words, I’m confident that in this instance, the visuals will provide sufficient inspiration to wet your appetite. September 24 is Heritage Day, also known as Braai Day. Essential to a traditional South African braai (barbecue), is a more than adequate selection of red meat, boerewors (sausage) and chops. Good chicken kebabs however, are like hens teeth. If you’re not first in line at Woolworths to snap up your favourite marinated chicken kebabs, you’ll probably have to go without. Here’s where this handy little recipe comes in.
The secret to a great chicken kebab is undoubtedly the marinade, as too the right choice of meat. I prefer to use chicken thighs as they are more flavourful and won’t dry out when grilling. Marinating overnight ensures that the chicken is tender and deeply infused with the aromatic oils. The flavour of these Greek chicken kebabs are bright and bold. For the marinade, I’ve gone with the obvious Mediterranean flavourings – extra virgin olive oil, lemons, garlic, rosemary and oregano. It’s worth mentioning that fresh rosemary is key to this marinade. Dried, this herb loses its aromatic fragrance.
For simple weeknight suppers, pan fry these kebabs in a griddle pan lightly brushed with olive oil. Serve with Greek salad and warmed pita breads. Fast, fresh and simple for easy al fresco suppers.
Greek Chicken Kebabs
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoon lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced
2 stems fresh rosemary, de-stalked and finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
For the kebabs
900g skinless, de-boned chicken thighs
wooden skewers, soaked in water for 30 minutes
Place all the ingredients for the marinade in a non-metallic bowl and mix to combine. Cut the chicken pieces into quarters. Add to the marinade and toss to coat. Cover with cling film and refrigerate overnight.
Thread the chicken onto the skewers. Season lightly with sea salt and cook the kebabs over the coals, turning frequently until slightly charred and cooked through. Serve with extra lemon wedges.