Kebabs are a quick and versatile dinner that can be prepared on an outdoor grill or open fire as well as under your broiler indoors. The combination of flavors is seemingly endless with various ingredients, marinades and spices. They can be prepared on a budget – a little meat will go a long way – or you can splurge on more expensive ingredients.
Although most commonly known as kebabs or shish kebabs in the United States, skewered meat is found in many cuisines worldwide. For example, Greek cuisine includes souvlaki which is a lamb kebab marinated in garlic, lemon juice, and olive oil. Japanese cuisine includes yakitori, chicken chunks seasoned with garlic, ginger, mirin, sake, and soy sauce.
In the U.S., we tend to pair vegetables like onion, pepper, and mushrooms along with fruits with meat or seafood to grill kebabs in the summertime.
Pineapple pairs well with shrimp, chicken and pork along with peppers, onions, and cherry tomatoes. Apples, peaches and plums work well with chicken and pork kebabs. For beef, try a combination of nectarines with onions and peppers or plums with mushrooms. Zucchini and summer squash are other vegetables that grill well.
Chicken should be taken from the breast or thigh. Remove the meat from the bone then remove the skin. Trim any fat and sinew from the meat. Cut your chicken into chunks. Chicken will pick up the flavors of a marinade and can be kept in a marinade anywhere from 15 minutes to several hours.