About Joojeh Kabob (Persian Style Chicken Kebob)
Although, kabobs are not among the typical daily meal plans for an Iranian family, for the rest of the world, kabobs are known as the leading Persian cuisine. Fans of this cuisine would go to a Persian restaurant expecting delectable chicken and meat kebobs paired with grilled vegetables served over saffron jeweled rice.
As for us Iranians, our go-to meals are khoresh (stews and braises), Āsh (thick soups), and polo (assorted rices). Traditionally, kabobs are savored for special occasions or family gatherings. Well, because it takes a lot of effort and budget to prepare kabobs the right way. However, that is no longer the case if you are open to enjoy a stove top grilled Kabobs vs its authentic versions.
An authentic kabob is expected to be done over a manghal (portable wood-charcoal grill) which allows the metal skewers to be laid directly over an open fire. However, these days, kabobs are mostly prepared on gas grills. Some families including my parents, have replicated the open fire concept on a gas grill. Basically, they use regular outdoor gas grills, but they take off the cast iron parts to lay the metal skewers on a direct flame.
On the left, joojeh kabobs are being grilled over an authentic manghal, and on the right, kabobs and vegetables are being grilled over a transformed gas grill, all courtesy of my dad :) isn't he awesome!
More over, it is the tradition to place the cooked kabobs and vegetables between couple of layers of fresh lavash bread before serving. Usually kabob comes with sides such as, white basmati rice, seasoned yogurt, pickle, and fresh herb assortment like basil, mint, arugula, scallions, and radishes. finally, we like to wash it down with ice-cold doogh (yogurt drink) on those hot summer days! LOL
Sounds like a lot of work! isn't it? well, I decided not to miss out on any yummy kabobs anyway! I stared making my kabobs over stove-top grill and grilled tomatoes and onions alongside white at it to keep those traditional flavors happening. I rather have non-traditional joojeh kabobs, than waiting months to have a real one.
4 lb. of boneless and skinless chicken breast, rinsed and pat dried
1 medium white or brown onion, thinly sliced
1 small green bell pepper, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp saffron, powdered and dissolved in 2 tbsp hot water
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tbsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly grounded black pepper
1 tbsp butter, melted in the microwave for 15 seconds
Make the marinade. In a small mixing bowl, combine the kosher salt, black pepper, dissolved saffron, lemon juice, stirring well with a whisk. set aside.
Slice the onions and bell pepper as thins as you can.
Cut chicken breast into large bite-size pieces. Place the cut pieces and the marinade in a mixing bowl and mix by hand or utensils until each piece is well coated with marinade.
Add sliced onions and bell peppers to chicken mixture and toss until veggies are evenly distributed. This is where you should decide to marinade them between 2 to 24 hours. 12 hours will be ideal.
Prep and trim the wooden skewers to fit your stove-top grill if using them. Soak skewers according to their package instruction.
When ready to grill, remember to leave chicken in room temperature for at least an hour.
Remove chicken pieces from its liquid and vegetable mixture. pass each piece through the skewer. Brush both sides with melted butter and season with a little additional salt and pepper. Place the skewered chickens over preheated stove-top grill. Cook them on medium-high for about 4 minutes per side or until tender. Serve with grilled tomatoes and onions over lavash bread or steamed basmati rice.
About Loobia Chiti
Loobia Chiti or pinto-bean-stew is an Iranian popular dish, and it is enjoyed as asappetizer, salad, or even vegetarian main entree. Loobia means bean and chiti is the persian name for Pinto. In Iran, Loobia chiti is one of the best-selling can foods just like the Bush's baked bean is in US! But wait, don't underestimate this dish by assuming it is another variation of bean sides you have had before! No it is not. This one is totally different powered by the tangy tomato paste sauce.
Now let's get a bit scientific here about beans without making a big deal:
For the beans
1 lb pinto beans, picked over, rinsed and soaked overnight or up to 24 hours
1 large carrot, chopped to 3 pieces
1 medium yellow onion, peeled and quartered
6 cloves garlic, peeled and halved
2-3 pieces bay leaves
Water for cooking
2 tbsp kosher salt
For the sauce
1/4 cup olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, small diced
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/3 cup tomato paste
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 or 2 tbsp brown or white sugar
Drain the soaked beans and place in a large pot. Fill the pot with enough water to cover 1 inch over the beans. Add the quartered onions, carrots, garlics, and bay leaves. Bring the water to boil over high heat, and then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover with lid and cook until beans are tender, about 1 1/2 hours, stirring it occasionally. Three quarters of the way through cooking (after 60 minutes), add kosher salt to season and continue cooking.
Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a medium frying pan, and add the diced onions. Season with salt and sauté until lightly golden about 5-7 minutes. Add the tomato paste, turmeric, and cayenne pepper, stirring everything together and sauté for 2-3 more minutes to cook off the raw tomato taste. Set aside.
When the beans are tender, remove the chunks of carrots, onion, bay leaves and add the onion mixture, vinegar, and sugar. Stir everything together and let it simmer on low heat for 30 minutes. Stir occasionally. When the texture of the dish thickens and sets, taste for additional seasoning. Serve hot or cold.
About Grilled Pork
When it comes to pork, I look for sure-fire recipes. Not that cooking pork is hard, but pork is notorious for becoming dry before you know it. So when working with pork it helps to have a plan instead of those culinary impulsive vibes.
I recommend these simple steps to get flavorful & juicy grilled pork every time.
3 lb thick-cut pork loin, preferably trimmed, cubed 2”x2” or bigger
1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
3 cloves of garlic, smacked and chopped
1 tbsp kosher salt
1 tbsp sriracha hot chili sauce
1 tsp turmeric (optional)
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1) In a small bowl, combine the garlic, salt, sriracha hot sauce, turmeric, black pepper, vinegar, soy sauce, and olive oil, stirring well with a whisk. Set aside.
2) In a mixing bowl, pour the marinade over pork and mix to coat each piece. Add sliced onions and mix again until all onions are evenly distributed. Transfer the pork mixture into a zip top bag and refrigerate overnight. Gently, shake the bag often through marination period.
3) Remove the pork pieces from the marinade and bring to room temperature. Wipe off excess moisture right before grilling.
4) Preheat the stove-top grill on high. Brush the pork pieces with cooking oil and season with salt and black pepper.
5) Place them on the hot stove-top grill and after one minute, turn down the heat to medium. Let them cook about 6 to 8 minutes. Raise the heat to high again, and flip the pork pieces over and after one minute turn down the heat to medium. Continue to cook 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer cooked pork pieces to a serving platter, covering with foil and Let them rest for 5 minutes. Serve hot.
3 cups of finely chopped spinach
1 cup of finely chopped dandelion
2 medium tomatoes, small diced
2 persian cucumbers, unpeeled, small diced
1 large carrot, peeled, small grated
For the lemon dressing
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp Aleppo pepper
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
For the mayonnaise dressing
2 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tbsp lemon juice
Pinch of salt
For the lemon dressing, whisk together the lemon juice, salt and pepper, Aleppo pepper, olive oil in a small bowl.
For the mayonnaise dressing, whisk together the mayonnaise, lemon juice, salt in a small bowl.
In a medium bowl, combine all the chopped vegetables. Add the lemon dressing and toss every thing together until coated. Transfer the salad mix on to a flat serving platter. Next, with a spoon, pour the mayonnaise dressing over the salad, making horizontal patterns. Serve chilled.
Hello & welcome to Tumbling Pots
I'm Sarineh Khachatourian, the creator, writer, and photographer of my food blog. This is where I write about my cooking obsessions and share only the best with you. More...