• Liz Talley - Urban Graze

Mediterranean Eggplant & Chicken Kebabs


Mediterranean spices are absolutely wonderful with eggplant; grilling adds real depth of flavor.

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 Tbsp. lemon juice

1 tsp. paprika

2 Tbsp. tomato, finely crush-chopped

1 small clove garlic, minced

1/2 tsp. dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp. ground cumin

1/4 tsp. ground coriander

Pinch of cayenne

Pinch of ground allspice

Salt and pepper to your taste

½ - ¾ lb. chicken, cut into large bite-sized cubes

2 long slender eggplants, cut into about ¾” rounds; cut larger sized eggplant into quarters

1 small red or sweet onion cut into oversized wedge-slices (for skewers)

2 Tbsp. olive oil

Lemon wedges, optional for garnish

Preheat grill to medium-high.

Combine the first twelve ingredients in a bowl. Take out 1 Tbsp.; set aside.

Add chicken cubes into the bowl with the spices, and coat thoroughly.

Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours (or overnight).

Sprinkle both sides of eggplant lightly with salt. Place on a cookie rack over a baking sheet or sink, and allow to drain for at least 15 minutes. Pat dry with a paper or cloth towel. Combine the reserved spice mixture with 2 Tbsp. olive oil and brush onto the eggplant slices. Thread rounds onto skewers horizontally through skin so they’ll lie flat on the grill.

On different skewers, thread the meat alternately with the onion.

Place the chicken kebabs in the center, hotter part of the grill. Place the eggplant kebabs around the outside, cooler part of the grill. Turn kebabs every couple of minutes, until the meat is thoroughly cooked. Meantime, turn the eggplant just once or twice, until it is browned on both sides. Both the meat kebabs and eggplant kebabs should take about 10-12 minutes total. Serve with lemon wedges, if using.

NOTES:

· Soak your wooden skewers in water for 20-30 minutes before using so that they don’t burn on the grill.

· Use two skewers for each kebab (stabbing each item twice). This will add stability to your kebab, and make it easier to turn.

· Have a clean platter for cooked kebabs at the ready for when you take them off the grill. Don’t use the same platter that you carried the raw meat on.

Recipe created or adapted by Liz Talley, Urban Graze

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