Monday, May 20, 2013

Chicken Souvlaki

We just love to grill in the summertime.  

I think that MGG and I do most of our cooking on the grill.  It keeps the house cooler, and the food just tastes so darn good.  It allows me to create different marinades, experiment with different cuts of meat, and try new flavors.

This dish is just perfect for grilling.  Since Memorial Day is fast approaching this would be a great dish to add to your menu.  I recently took a class at Williams-Sonoma where we spent a day on Greek food.  This was just one of the many dishes we made.  

What's better than chicken kabobs?  They are first marinaded and then simply grilled.  Nothing fancy, it's all about the flavors.  Serve with a fresh vegetable salad and some Greek dips and you are set. We grilled them on skewers and then removed them for serving.  You can leave them on.  For our purposes they were just a little easier to serve and eat with the pita and dips when removed from the skewers.

You have to take the time to try this.  Trust me, it's that good!  You can swap the chicken for beef or lamb if you like, however the chicken is so lean and juicy it's hard to pass this up!  

Kitchen Tip:  If using wooden skewers make sure to soak them in water for 30 minutes to prevent burning during grilling.

Stay tuned for the salads and dips that go along with this main course.  I'll be posting them throughout the week.  Enjoy!

Chicken Souvlaki

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Lifestyles Series, Small Plates, by Joanne Weir (Time-Life Books, 1998)

3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbs. dry white wine
1 Tbs. lemon juice
1/4 cup minced yellow onion
1 garlic clove, minced
2 bay leaves, broken or chopped into tiny pieces
1 tsp. dried oregano
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken, cut into 1-inch pieces
Lemon wedges for garnish
Flat-leaf parsley leaves for garnish

In a bowl, stir together the olive oil, wine, lemon juice, onion, garlic, bay leaves, oregano, salt and pepper. Add the chicken pieces and turn to coat evenly. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or for up to overnight.

Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill or preheat a cast-iron grill pan over medium-high heat. If using bamboo skewers, put 6 skewers in water to cover.

Remove the chicken pieces from the marinade and drain the bamboo skewers, if using. Thread the chicken pieces onto the bamboo or stainless-steel skewers, dividing the pieces evenly among them. Place the skewers on the grill rack 4 to 5 inches from the fire or place in the hot pan and grill, turning once, until the chicken is opaque throughout, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Season with salt and pepper.

Transfer to a warmed platter and garnish with lemon wedges and parsley. Serve immediately. Serves 6.

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