One of our favorite Turkish recipes. This recipe for chicken kebab reminds me of a dish that I had in Jerusalem in the Arab quarter. Actually this is quite a healthy dish as well! Great for a week night dinner.
These chicken kebabs make a nice entrée or a great appetizer or hor d oeuvres as well.
1 1/2 tablespoons Aleppo pepper or 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper plus 2 teaspoons Hungarian sweet paprika.
1 cup whole milk Greek yogurt (because you cant find Turkish yogurt)
2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoon tomato paste
6 cloves garlic chopped fine
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 lemons one sliced thin one zested (no white pith) and juiced
2 pounds boneless chicken thighs cut into 1 ¼ to 1 ½ inch cubes
1 large onion quarted
Place the Aleppo pepper in a bowl and mix with one teaspoon warm water. Stir and let sit for five minutes. If using the chile flakes and paprika mix with two tablespoons water. Afterward combine with yogurt, olive oil, red wine vinegar, tomato paste, salt pepper and lemon zest. Mix well then reserve a half cup of this mixture for use as a dipping sauce for the kebabs. Add the chicken pieces to the marinade portion. Allow to marinate for an hour or up to six hours.
Thread the chicken and onion slices onto metal or bamboo skewers. I like to place the thin slices of lemon occasionally though the process.
Prepare the grill for medium high heat, with some space for indirect heat.
Grill the kebabs until golden brown and move to the indirect side. Allow to cook through this will likely take 12 to 15 minutes. Place the kebabs on a platter with the small bowl of reserved yogurt sauce/marinade and lemon wedges if desired.
Serve this with cous cous or rice pilaf. I make the Israeli cous cous pilaf recipe from Trader Joe's and it was a great side dish for the kebabs!
I found rather that a Cabernet Sauvignon worked well with this dish such as J. Lohr.
Check out Wikipedia's article on Turkish Recipes and Turkish Cuisine. Click here.