Here is another recipe to fire up that grill for – Cilantro Lemon Chicken Skewers. I love picnics and bbqs, but would there are times when I like to spend more time talking to friends or doing other fun things than keeping an eye on the grill . I love this recipe for those times , what is more the fresh cilantro and lemon flavors just pops. .
There is a traditional Indian Kabob recipe – Murgh Hariyali Tikka or the green chicken kabob. Boneless chicken is marinated in green herbs and spices and grilled in hot tandoor. It is juicy with surprisingly bright green , fresh flavors . The recipe today is a minimalist version of this , no hard to get spices or tools , just plain fresh and easy ingredients .
Along with lemon and cilantro a few mint leaves and a clove of garlic is added to round out the flavor. I like to mix it all with olive oil , but use any oil that you love. The green chili is optional. I like to add a serrano pepper with the seeds and ribs removed to extract the maximum flavor without the heat .
All the ingredients for the marinade is added to a foodprocessor or blender and processed till smooth paste. Half the mix is used to marinate the chicken and the remaining is reserved as sauce to drizzle over the kabobs.
Since the idea is to minimize the cooking time , I use thin strips of chicken breasts. And do not forget to soak the bamboo skewers in water before threading the chicken pieces on it.
Cilantro Lemon Chicken Skewers
Chicken Breast - 1 to 11/2 lb Cut into 1/2" to 3/4" thick strips
Cilantro - 1 bunch
Mint Leaves- A few
Garlic - 1 to 2
Lemon - 1
Salt - 1/2 Tsp (To Taste)
Olive Oil - 3 Tbsp
Green Chili - 1 (Optional)
Place about 1 C of tender stems and leaves of cilantro in a food processor. Add a handful of mint leaves along with 1 to 2 cloves of garlic. If using the chilies , remove the seeds and the ribs, and add to the mix. Squeeze the lemon and add 2 Tbsp of the juice along with olive oil and half the salt to the herbs and process to a smooth puree. If needed add 1 more tablespoon of lemon juice.
Taste adjust salt and reserve half the marinade.
Spread the remaining half of the marinade over the chicken pieces. Stir to coat. Cover and set aside for 20 to 30 minutes.
If using bamboo skewers soak them in water.
Pre heat the grill to high heat .
While the grill is preheating , thread the chicken in the skewers.
Brush the grill with oil and grill the pieces 10 to 12 minutes, turning once or twice in between. The cook time varies depending on the thickness of the pieces and the grill temperature. The chicken is done when the juices run clear.
Serve with the reserve marinade.
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