The end of April has me moving towards less wintery dinners this week. Even though it’s still very cold at night, the bright evenings are changing what I want to eat.
That’s why I’m sharing this slightly summery, but still substantial, main course with you. It’s the sort of dinner that can be prepared ages beforehand and then brought together in about 20 minutes when you’re ready to eat.
Let’s take a run at this..
- A non-plastic bowl to marinate your chicken.
- A grill pan, an over-head grill with rack and tray, or a barbeque (if you’re lucky enough to decide to make this on one of the 3 nights a year that we can barbeque in Ireland 😉 )
- Tin foil, to line the grill pan (makes clearing up so much easier..)
- A deep-sided frying pan
- Approximately 2-3 metal or wooden kebab holders per person – if using wood, soak in cold water for 10-15 minutes.
INGREDIENTS: For the kebabs: this is plenty for about 4 people..
- 2 skinless chicken thighs or 1 chicken breast per person
- 2-3 small red onions cut into quarters
- 200g approximately of Chorizo sausage, cut in two, then into 2-3cm lengths.(see picture below)
- juice of a large lemon
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 fat chilli – de-seeded and diced small
- 2 tablespoons of Olive oil
- 1 fresh Pineapple, all the skin cut off, and sliced vertically into 4, the hard core removed, and the flesh cut into 3-4cm chunks.
For the savoury rice:
- 225g Basmati rice, cooked, rinsed and cooled.
- 3-4 Spring onions, finely chopped, including green parts
- 1 small red or green chilli, finely chopped
- Half a red, yellow or other Pepper – finely diced
- 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 4-5cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled, cut into thin sticks.
- 1 tablespoon of Rapeseed oil
- 2 tablespoons of Soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon of ground coriander
- 1-2 tablespoonfuls of Fish sauce
- about 1/5th of the fresh Pineapple from the Pineapple above, cut into fine dice
- Handful of chopped fresh Coriander, to garnish.
First marinate your chicken:
- Mix the Olive oil, lemon juice, chopped garlic and chopped chilli together in the bowl
- Cut the chicken into fairly large pieces – aim to have 2-3 pieces on each kebab.
- Mix the chicken into the marinade ingredients, cover and leave in a cool place for 30 minutes or until you’re ready.
- Prepare the rest of the kebab ingredients as described.
- Lightly oil each kebab stick before threading any food onto them.
- Make up the kebabs threading a piece of red onion, the chicken, then Chorizo, then pineapple, and repeat. Put each kebab onto the rack inside the grill tray as it’s ready. See below..
- Continue until you have enough kebabs made up. If you have left-over ingredients, just distribute them between all the kebabs.
- Pour any remaining marinade over the kebabs. *you can complete the recipe as far as here in advance*
- Heat your grill to it’s highest setting.
- Place the grill tray about 5cms from the heat, and cook for 10-15 minutes, then turn each one over and given them another 10 minutes until the chicken is cooked, the Chorizo is crispy and the vegetables are softened and singed at the edges.
While the kebabs are cooking you can get on with the Savoury Rice:
- Heat the oil in the pan on a fairly high heat.
- Add the spring onions, ginger, pepper and chilli and stir-fry for about 5 minutes, moving them about all the time.
- Add the garlic and stir in.
- Add the cold rice and reduce the heat to medium.
- Stir the rice and combine it with the vegetables, until they’re evenly mixed through.
- Add the Soy sauce, and stir in; then add the fish sauce and ground Coriander.
- Keep moving the rice around as you cook it.
- Taste and adjust the seasoning.
- Add the finely chopped pineapple pieces and fold through.
- Garnish with the chopped Coriander.
- This is a personal thing, but I like putting the cooked kebabs onto everyone’s plate, and allowing each person to slide the contents off using their forks – I always think it makes it a bit of an occasion..
- 2-3, depending on size, kebabs per person, and a helping of the Savoury Rice.
- Serve the remainder of the Savoury Rice in a warmed bowl on the table.
- The most tiresome part of this recipe (for me anyway) is threading the chicken and vegetables onto the kebabs, but once that’s done, you can chill them (covered with clingfilm or foil) until you need them. In this way, this recipe is a great one for ‘prepping now, cooking later’ dinners.
- I also tend to cook the rice earlier in the day, then cool it immediately and keep it covered, in the fridge, until dinner time.
- I’ve served this recipe at dinner parties for friends several times, and I think people really enjoy the palaver of sliding the pieces off the kebab.
- If I’m doing this for a party, I usually serve a yoghurt-based Tzatziki (yoghurt, finely chopped raw onions, chopped, de-seeded cucumber, and fresh mint – adjust seasoning before serving – it always needs salt!) and some warmed flatbreads as an accompaniment.
- The crispy Chorizo and the fresh Pineapple really improve this recipe.