Summer of the Skewer

by on Jun.29, 2011, under Yummies

ke·bab (or ke·bob also ka·bob): cubes of meat (as lamb or beef) marinated and cooked with vegetables usually on a skewer

Merriam-Webster.com. Merriam-Webster, 2011.
Web. 28 June 2011.

My first kabob (I know it should have an ‘a’ not an ‘o’, but I don’t care) encounter of the summer was several weeks ago. My best friend and her fiancee were visiting from out of state with family down at a lake house not far from where I live. They invited The Man, The Bean, and myself over for dinner. There we were served some simple and delicious lamb kabobs. These were pure in flavor and content, easy for all to eat, and offered a verity of delicious grilled veggies that were a good complement to the lamb flavor (recipe below). As I spent the next several days visiting with them, there were were a variety of other kabobs to be had.

This got me thinking about what a quintessential summer cook-out food kabobs are.  If you are tired of burgers and hot dogs, these can be a yummy, and often healthier, alternative. They are generally not difficult to assemble (so long as you stay away from exotic ingredients), they offer endless combination options, are typically kid-friendly, and can be tweaked for even the most picky of eaters. Don’t care for onions, here’s a skewer without. Only want the meat, no problem. Also, with adding a marinade to the meat (and veggies, if your so inclined), you can pump up the flavor even more.

Within just a few days of the kabob-filled lake house weekend, seemingly by coincidence (but who knows), I came across several more delicious-looking skewer-fillers.

Garlic Balsamic Pork Kabobs by Pam of Once a Month Mom
pork kabob kabab pineapple

With this, I added some large pineapple chunks to my skewers, as I am a HUGE fan of grilled pineapple. For the first time ever I bought a whole pineapple and peeled, cored, and diced it myself. Not nearly as hard as I thought. If you think you can’t do this, your wrong, you totally can. All you need is a sharp knife and a large cutting board (I did make a bit of a mess). The kabobs were AMAZINGLY good. The Man and The Bean both loved them. I could have kept eating them too, but I wanted to save the last bit for lunch the next day. Six thumbs way up.

Rosemary Ranch Chicken Kabobs by Theresa Spencer
Rosemary Ranch Chicken Kabobs kababs recipe

I will be getting the necessaries for these at the store this weekend. Maybe I’ll grill these for Independence Day.

Mango Jerk Chicken Kabob recipe by Florida Coastal Cooking

After some jerk chicken skewers at the lake house, I wanted to find a recipe to do these at home. A quick Google Image search turned up these mouthwatering-looking sticks of deliciousness. I love mango almost as much as I love pineapple, and grilled…just sounds divine.

trader joes chicken mango sausageI was also so inspired by the lake house recipes and those that were just coming to me, I decided to make my own kabobs. I happened to have some Trader Joe’s Chicken and Mango Sausage in the fridge, and a quick trip to the produce isle later, I had my sliced sausage resting next to pineapple, mushrooms, and red onion wedges. You can make kabobs out of just about anything. The longest part of the process is the assembly, and if you have a few hands to help you, even this can be done quickly.

From the lake house weekend:

Simple Lamb Kabobs:

lamb kabob kabab vegtables recipe

  • Lamb – cut into chunks
  • Pineapple – cubed
  • Green  and Red bell peppers – Seeds removed and roughly chopped
  • Onion
  • Mushrooms
  • Grape or Cherry Tomatoes
  • Olive oil
  • Rice
  • Pineapple Juice
  • Pita Bread

Soak wooden skewers in water so that they, in theory, won’t catch on fire on the grill. Loaded them up, in no particular pattern, and brush with olive oil. Grill on medium high heat.  Eyeball it as far as how long to cook them, 10-15 minutes total should do the trick, depending on how thick your meat chunks are. Serve with rice drizzled with pineapple juice and Pita bread, which can be used to make a sandwich.

Recipe by Darwin and Sylvia Allen.

Personally, I might tweak this a little and replace the rice with Couscous and add a side of tzatziki sauce to drizzle on the lamb and veggies in my pita. This is a simple and satisfying dish.

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