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Kebabs, Satays, & Skewers--Cook-Off 24


Chris Amirault
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Whole Foods had a great sale on fresh, wild swordfish, of all things, which I haven't had in any form for years and years. I cubed the thick 1 1/2 lb steah, oiled and salted the cubes, let 'em chill for an hour, impaled them on soaked bamboo skewers, grilled them over very hot coals, and served them with this mango and cucumber salad. Fantastic.

Chris Amirault

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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I'm running way behind on posting to this topic. We've had skewered meat several times in the last few weeks. It's fun to do, and the kids really enjoy skewering meat.

First, my skewers. I love these skewers; stuff doesn't roll around on them!

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These were some cheap skewers in one of those plastic packages on a rack at the local supermarket. I've had them for what feels like forever.

First up, chicken breasts marinated in ancho chili powder, lime, garlic and some oil, along side a black bean and tomato salsa. Rave reviews.

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Venison kebabs. Marinated the venison in Ruth Smith's Shish-ka-bob Marinade, courtesy of Smithy. This was very, very nice. The hot dogs were for my cousin's kids who only eat hot dogs and Kraft Mac and Cheese :wacko: .

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For my birthday, Paul and I were alone at home, so I got some beautiful scallops. Fish/seafood (outside of shrimp) are pretty fragile, so I tend to use two skewers. These were unadorned with anything before grilling. (We also had sweet corn with this meal.)

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When we saw Peter at camp, he said that when he gets home, he want's to eat satay or some meat on a stick!

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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I keep forgetting to take pictures. I've made satay, kebabs, and skewers since this cook off began - playing with a new grill, especially when it's so hot.

Here's what we had last night. Chicken marinated in soy sauce, rice wine, sesame oil, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, and a bit of lime juice, then skewered up and grilled. The skewers are wide and flat and hold pretty much anything nicely, making things easy to turn.

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Kathy

Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all. - Harriet Van Horne

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  • 2 weeks later...
Hope I'm not breaking the rules posting after the next cookoff has started.

Nope, post any time. That's one of the nice things about cookoffs.

Tandoori King Prawn prepared in my new home made tandoor!

Steve: The shrimp look great, but I'm most intrigued by your home-made tandoor. Details, please!

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  • 1 month later...

well a week or two into this cookoff i promised to do a step by step guide to forming kebabs onto skewers. A mere two months later, i finally remembered to take pictures while making kebabs, so i figured better late than never so here it is.

i had a friend of mine take the pictures, and he had to be bribed with quite a bit of Arak to agree, so bear that in mind with the photoraphy...

First, the minced lamb, i had the butcher mince it fine, with a little added fat for binding. mixture is probably about 25%-30% fat.

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here is my mise en place, (sounds a bit silly to say that with kebabs, but there is a first time for everything)

lamb, minced onion, minced garlic, salt, pepper, allspice, olive oil and a bowl with ice water.

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first you get as fine a mince into the onion as you can

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a little olive oil helps

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then you add the onions and parsley to the meat

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you mix them, with salt, pepper, and allspice until you get them well bound. if you make any kind of sausage you need to just get to the binding stage

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here is where the ice water comes in... you have to keep everything as cold as possible, i put the meat and skewers in the freezer for 15 mins beforehand, but my hands need to cooperate too.

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once the meat is bound, you form it into a log and stick it in the freezer for a few more minutes, then you take a pinch and get it onto the skewer. i use heavy square skewers but if you cant find them, the flat metal ones work pretty well.

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you form the meat into the kebab shape, and pinch the ends so it doesnt fall off. sorry the impact of the Arak is beginning to show in the focus of the pictures, but you get the idea.

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you finish the skewer by genty rolling it in one hand while coaxing the meat into shape with your fingers. this is where the square skewer makes things a lot easier.

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then you stick the skewers in the freezer fo ten minutes which helps them hold their shape, and you partake in some well deserved Arak, to catch up with your totally drunk friends.

With more Arak, and some mezze, you get the charcoal (lump of course) going and you have a fantastic time. of course with the amount of lubrication, you totally forget the photography you promised your egullet friends.

here is where the real value of Kebabs come in. a couple of them will steady the best drunk, and remind you what you need to do. by this time, your prize perfectly formed kebabs are all eaten, and you have to show the grilling with the misshapen kebabs that you did not grill yet. Nonetheless, this is a project that is too far along to be abandoned, so here they are... the unloved, the rejected, the last kebabs, on the grill with some lamb chops.

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and a final out of focus shot of a finished kebab. i cant blame anyone for this other than myself and the Arak. ... thats right i can blame the Arak...

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so if this was at all useful, it is all my excellent work. if it is a crudely photographed mess, please direct your complaints to the Arak company. i dont make the stuff, i only drink it...

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Lemongrass. The meat mixture is: Pork mince, shredded fresh coconut, shallots, garlic, ginger, fresh tumeric and sacred spices. Green coconut husks used for smoke.

Did you have to soak the lemongrass before using, or is it green enough as is?

What are sacred spices? A secret mix of your own or a name of a spice blend?

These look delicious. I will give them a try!

Dejah

www.hillmanweb.com

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No need to soak the fresh lemongrass, another thing you can do is a Laotian method, where you pound the lemongrass until it shreds, then stuff the pork mixture inside.

Like this.

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I haven't got my notes with me, but the spices (and the sate) are specific temple food, made by men and may involve some sort of phallic symbology. Some of the spices used were: Long pepper, nutmeg, coriander seeds, with roasted candlenuts.

Edited by Adam Balic (log)
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I haven't got my notes with me, but the spices (and the sate) are specific temple food, made by men and may involve some sort of phallic symbology. Some of the spices used were: Long pepper, nutmeg, coriander seeds, with roasted candlenuts.

:hmmm: Might be the way to get hubby into cooking. :laugh:

I can get everything here except for candlenuts. Any substitute?

Both versions of your lemongrass kebabs look great! Thanks.

Dejah

www.hillmanweb.com

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I haven't got my notes with me, but the spices (and the sate) are specific temple food, made by men and may involve some sort of phallic symbology. Some of the spices used were: Long pepper, nutmeg, coriander seeds, with roasted candlenuts.

:hmmm: Might be the way to get hubby into cooking. :laugh:

I can get everything here except for candlenuts. Any substitute?

Both versions of your lemongrass kebabs look great! Thanks.

Sue-On,

When we were in the States and couldn't get candlenuts, we substituted macadamia nuts for added texture and richness.

Yetty CintaS

I am spaghetttti

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  • 6 months later...

Yesterday, I made the beef satay from the excellent Cradle of Flavor: Home Cooking from the Spice Islands of Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia by James Oseland, and I figured out a pretty nifty way to put the very thinly sliced strips of marinated beef onto the skewers. I'm usually slow at this sort of thing, but I zipped through about sixty in ten minutes.

1. Flatten one piece of meat onto a cutting board.

2. While one hand holds down the meat, use the skewer to "sew" the meat onto the skewer, turning the point of the skewer up and down along the piece of meat.

3. Flatten the meat out once again so that it extends along the length of the skewer.

Chris Amirault

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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  • 1 year later...

Browsing the cook-offs, I realized that I had not posted a few "meat on a stick" meals. I hope y'all don't mind a little self-plagiarizing.

Mom Leaung Neuang’s ’s famous satay, from Thai Food. Strip steak marinated with coconut cream, turmeric, sweetened condensed milk, fish sauce, bourbon, and a paste of shallots and roasted peanuts, cumin, and coriander seed. We sprinkled on the excess marinade while the satay was on the grill. This was one of my favorite satays ever.

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Beef satay, from Cradle of Flavor. This is a family favorite, and we have made it several times.

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Garlic chicken tikka kebabs. We marinated cubed chicken breast overnight in garlic paste, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and ground cardamom, coriander, cumin, black pepper, and garam masala. The kebabs were grilled and finished with a glaze of melted ghee, lemon juice, dried fenugreek leaves, black salt, cumin, and chaat masala.

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Anyone else cooked meat on a stick lately?

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  • 3 years later...

3 years too late, but I thought I'd show some kabab I've done in the past. As part of my Middle Eastern heritage, kabab is one of my favorite things to cook in barbecue season. Here are some lamb cubes (in Iraq known as tikka, in Turkey "kuzu şiş" and in Iran as "barreh")

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The lamb there was marinated most likely in a mix of grated onion, olive oil, lime juice, sumac, and some za'tar. Served with grilled peppers and onions, onion-and-sumac salad, and a grilled eggplant salad.

I also often make what in Iraq would be called chicken tikka, or in Arab countries shish tawouq, but with a bit of a Persian twist - marinated in yogurt, saffron, lime, grated onion, and za'tar.

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I also do ground meat kabab (in Iraq just known as "kabab"), which I make as a sort of cross between Iranian koobideh and spicy Turkish Adana kebabı. Sadly no pictures of this.

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