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I grilled shish kebobs for the first time tonight.  Below is the recipe as well as a few lessons learned.

Ingredients
  • Meat (I used beef and shrimp, but more on that later)
  • Veggies (whatever you like; I used bell peppers, vidalia onions, zucchini, fingerling potatoes, sweet potatoes, mushrooms, and sweet yellow baby tomatoes)
Marinade
These measurements are arbitrary just to give an idea of the ratios.  Increase or decrease depending on the number of kebobs you're making.
  • 1/2 c lime juice
  • 1/2 c dry white wine
  • 1/4 c olive oil
  • 1/2 - 1 bunch of cilantro, chopped fine
  • 1 - 1 1/2 t chipotle chili powder
  • 1 t garlic powder
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 inch piece of grated ginger
  • touch of black pepper
  • touch of honey

Dice the meat and vegetables into approximately 1" cubes/pieces and parboil or blanch the denser vegetables for about 5 minutes (potatoes mostly, but you can do the peppers and zucchini if you don't want them as crunchy).  Put all the marinade ingredients together and stir well.  Combine the meat and veggies in a ziploc and pour the marinade over them, squeezing out the excess air.  Let sit, flipping the bag(s) over occasionally, ideally for 1-3 hours.  Then skewer the meat and vegetables alternating them, but hold the tomatoes back.  They need to be put on a separate skewer and put on the grill toward the end or on an upper rack because they will cook very fast.  Preheat the grill till it is very hot (10 minutes on high for a gas grill) and add the kebobs.  Grill them with the lid OPEN.  This is direct heat cooking; you're not baking shish kebobs.  Turn them about every 3-4 minutes and watch for hotspots.  You may have to move some from the edges to the center and vice versa.  If you don't know whether your grill has hotspots you will after cooking kebobs.  Cook until done, probably about 12-16 minutes.  Take off, cover in foil for 5-8 minutes to finish, and enjoy.

Lessons Learned
  • It's not a great idea to do beef and shrimp together.  The beef takes longer to cook than anything else and while the vegetables can tolerate getting a little crispy (and you may even like them that way as I do), the shrimp cannot.  It will dry out and become tough.  (I also used pre-cooked shrimp, so perhaps raw would have had a more similar cooking time to the beef.)
  • I used beef stew meat because I had picked some up cheap from the grocery store and it is already cut into the right size pieces.  It works okay, but tends to be tough.  A better cut (like a top round) would make for better kebobs.
  • This was a last minute idea and so I only marinated my ingredients for about 30 minutes.  That's really not long enough.  The flavors are bold and the marinade very acidic so they are picked up quickly (especially by the more delicate shrimp), but I think 1-3 hours or more of marinading would make a lot of difference.
  • A lot of folks recommend either double skewering or buying the metal double skewers, because when you try to turn single skewered kebobs the skewer tends to turn while the contents stay in place.  I think double skewering with bamboo skewers would be a pain, but the double skewers would probably be a worthwhile (minimal) investment if you were going to do this much.
  • Finally, you do not need much of any one ingredient.  We went way overboard without realizing it and had enough kebobs to feed ten people.  Underestimate, because the number of different meat and veggies you are using will add up.  But hey, who can complain about kebob leftovers?

 


Comments

07/13/2012 3:25am

I love kebobs really do thanks for this one would try this out as soon as i can in my kitchen. If you have more recipe for kebobs please share it on your next post.

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03/26/2014 4:47am

I have a presentation next week,and I am on the look for such information.

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