Greek Chicken Kabobs

Greek Chicken Kabobs

For the last two years, any time I’ve shot photos for blog posts I’ve done so by occupying this little 4 foot by 2-1/2 foot corner in the kitchen. It is wedged between the door to our garage, the side of a kitchen cabinet and the sliding glass door to the back yard. Other than completely blocking anyone access to the garage (or access to the house from the garage), the spot was perfect because it had good light between the hours of 8am and 3pm virtually all year ‘round, and it was conveniently located in the kitchen.

But then I started shooting videos. And oh did I learn so much! Natural light for photography is one thing — a beautiful thing - but you start shooting videos and suddenly you notice how the tiniest cloud can render one scene completely blueish. (EX: You can watch the colors of the background on this sheet pan fajitas video change throughout the whole scene. Yikes!).

So I dove in an purchased a set of “YouTuber” lights. So far I’m still learning how to use the ones I purchased (affiliate link). The light from the bulbs that came with them are a little pinker than I expected. BUT owning lights has opened up a whole new world for me — a world where I can shoot recipes outside of the hours of 9am and 3pm! And since I’m usually at work from 9-5pm, this is a BIG FREAKIN’ DEAL.

Remember that tiny corner of the kitchen I mentioned? Yes well, me and my three lights don’t fit there. At least, not with a plate of food, too. So, a few weeks ago, I made it my mission to take over our under-used office/spare bedroom and turn it into a studio. (!!!)

With the walls painted with a fresh coat of white and the closet rearranged to accommodate my photography gear, these Greek Chicken Kabobs were one of the first dishes to “test run” the new studio. All of this has given me a whole new level of motivation for house projects (I was running out of steam).

And now you’re thinking, OKAY WE GET IT but what about the kabobs? Let’s do it:

Greek Chicken Kabobs
Greek Chicken Kabobs

There are two ways to cook this mix of chicken and veggies in a lemon-oregano marinade: grilled, or baked.

Grilled, string everything onto skewers for kabobs. Roast on high until the juices run clear — about 12 minutes total, 6 on each side. You’ll get that fire-touched smokey flavor on the chicken and the onions and the tomatoes. This option is wonderful in the middle of summer, when you are out exploring (camping, at a park, at a potluck, etc), or when you just want to avoid turning on the oven.

Baked, you can skip the skewers and spread everything out on a sheet pan. Roast it all at 450°F for 15-20 minutes, until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F. On a sheet pan, the juices from the tomatoes, mushrooms, and chicken swirl together in the pan, creating a flavorful pan sauce. It makes the dish juicy which is delicious over rice. This version is best for weeknights or wintertime — when lighting the grill (or even going outside) is off the table.

In both versions, the chicken turns out super tender, thanks to the lemony marinade. That same marinade is what gives the whole dish it’s Greek-inspired flavor. They are a little spot of sunshine in the middle of a wintery week, but also perfect for summer grilling season (once that finally arrives!).

Greek Chicken Kabobs

Published January 29, 2018 by
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Serves: 6   |    Active Time: 30 minutes



Ingredients:

For the chicken:
  • Juice from 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • Sprinkle of red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pound chicken breast, cubed

  • For the kabobs:
  • 1 red onion, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 bell peppers, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 cup mushrooms (crimini, baby bella, or white)
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup Kalamata olives
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Garnish: 2 tablespoons minced parsley

  • Directions:

    1. Marinate the chicken: in an airtight container, combine the lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, oregano, thyme, rosemary, red pepper flakes, and salt. Add chicken, and stir to combine. Close container and place in fridge for at least 4 hours (up to 24).
    2. For grilling: Light and preheat grill to high.
    3. For oven: Preheat oven to 450°F.
    4. Place chopped veggies and olives in a large bowl. Drizzle with olive oil, and stir so everything is coated.
    5. Assemble kabobs: Working with one kabob stick at a time, skewer chicken, vegetables and olives in an alternating pattern. (If you plan to roast in the oven, you can skip this step, and simply spread everything out on a sheet pan).
    6. For grilling: Place kabobs on preheated grill and reduce heat to medium-high. Grill, with the lid closed, for 6 minutes, and then turn kabobs and grill on second side for another 6 minutes. Juices should run clear and chicken should reach an internal temperature of 165°F. Remove from grill and serve hot over a bed of rice. Garnish with parsley. For oven: Place sheet pan in pre-heated oven and roast for 15-20 minutes, until chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F. Remove from oven and use a spatula to serve over rice. Spoon juices from pan over top. Garnish with parsley.

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    Peach-Jalapeño Grilled Chicken

    Peach-Jalapeño Grilled Chicken
    Peach-Jalapeño Grilled Chicken

    We got a grill. WE GOT A GRILL! 

    Over the last two years, I've slowly but steadily growing a list of "things I'll make when we get a grill," but we held out, looking for a good deal. And, after two years of waiting? Not once did we spot a grill on sale that was also a grill we wanted. But earlier this month, we finally got a grill off of Craigslist -- a steal, really. 

    And oh have we been grilling. Chicken. Sausages. Fish for tacos. Even brussels sprouts. This Peach-Jalapeño Grilled Chicken is one of the highlights for me so far, something that I started working on B.G. (before grill 😏) but couldn’t get quite right until we had a grill. Nothing like cooking over an open flame! 

    I have been super crazy for peaches lately, gobbling them up fresh every day. This recipe uses peach preserves, so you can make it any time of year, though if it is peach season, fresh grilled peaches make for a sweet side. Jalapeños add some zing, along with a bit of fresh ginger. It's a sticky, spicy, sweet, savory combo that screams summer, Perfect with a side salad or grilled veggies. 

    (And, it’s fast to make and EASY. If you know how to stir, you can make this glaze — because that’s all you have to do, stir it together. 🙌)

    Peach-Jalapeño Grilled Chicken
    Peach-Jalapeño Grilled Chicken

    Peach-Jalapeño Grilled Chicken

    Published July 31, 2018 by
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    Serves: 2-3   |    Active Time: 20 minutes



    Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup peach preserves
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeño, minced
  • 1 pound chicken breasts (about 2 large breasts)
  • For serving: 1-2 peaches, cilantro for garnish, lime wedges, fresh jalapeño slices

  • Directions:

    1. Whisk together the peach preserves, soy sauce, rice vinegar, ginger, garlic, and jalapeño in the bottom of a medium-sized mixing bowl.
    2. Place chicken in the bowl with the sauce, and turn to coat.
    3. Heat grill with a medium-high flame. When the grill is hot, place the chicken on the grate and close the lid. Allow the chicken to cook for 3 minutes with out moving to get good sear marks. Then, flip to the second side.
    4. Cook chicken breasts until they reach an internal temperature of 165°F or the juices run clear (I use this Instant Read Thermometer, and it’s great (affiliate link!))
    5. If serving with grilled peaches: slice peaches in half and remove the pit. Lightly oil the fleshy side of each peach (use a high-heat oil such as coconut) and place on the grill. Grill for 4-5 minutes, undisturbed.
    6. Remove chicken from heat, and sprinkle with cilantro. Serve hot with lime wedges and fresh jalapeño slices.

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    Grilled Lamb Shoulder Chop with Strawberry Mint Truffle Sauce (Paleo)

    As many of you know, I’ve been working my way through old recipes, giving them an update here and there. A month ago, it was this Moroccan Carrot Salad. Today, it’s this lamb recipe, which was originally published in 2014. Oh how much has changed in three years! We were house sitting for my mom when I made this recipe, her strawberry garden providing much of the inspiration. We’ve since moved three times: into a rental apartment, and then another, and finally, into our own home. I don’t currently have a strawberry patch, but revisiting this recipe has made me seriously consider adding one, despite the fact that strawberry plants are super aggressive —verging on invasive here. So, I used store-bought strawberries, which are at their peak right now. They were so juicy and sweet. If you haven’t tried this one, I know you’re going to love it! The rest of this post is the original post from 2014 (with new images). 

    It's a battle. A fight for spring's sweetest bounty and a race against the clock. Has anyone else failed to pick a single strawberry this season? I certainly have. It's not that I haven't tried. On the contrary, I've been eyeballing those berries since they were white flower buds. The problem is, I'm not the only one with a sweet tooth. 

    Oh no, its seems that every being wants a share of these berries: the robins living in the tree, the chip monk--or was that a mouse?- and probably my own cat. They all have cheeks full of sweet strawberry pulp. Can you blame them? Strawberries on the vine are pretty much juicy summer in a bite.

    Grilled Lamb Shoulder Chop with Strawberry Mint Truffle Sauce

    For the first time this summer, I took what I could get. After savoring the second bite of this grilled lamb with strawberry sauce, I understood what the animals in the yard were so excited about. Garden-fresh strawberries are good. Really good. 

    This recipe showcases our garden's strawberries and mint (which I have no trouble harvesting--that stuff grows like weeds!). The truffle oil and strawberries play on the sweet earthiness of the lamb while the lemon and mint bring it to life!

    Grilled Lamb Shoulder Chop with Strawberry Mint + Truffle (Paleo)

    Published Jun 23, 2014 by
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    Serves: 2   |    Total Time: 20 minutes



    Ingredients:

      For the Lamb:
    • 2 Lamb shoulder chops
    • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder OR 1 garlic clove, minced fine
    • 1/8 teaspoon salt 
    • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper 

    • For the Strawberry Mint Truffle Topping:
    • 1/2 cup fresh ripe strawberries, diced small
    • 1/4 cup minced fresh mint leaves
    • 1/4 of a red onion, minced
    • 1 teaspoon truffle oil (affiliate link!)
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
    • Sea salt (to taste)
    • Ground black pepper (to taste)

    Directions:

    1. Turn grill to high. While it heats, prepared the lamb: Season both sides of the lamb with garlic, salt and pepper. Place on grill, and close the lid. Cook for three minutes and flip, cooking for three more minutes (about a minutes less for rare, a minute or two more for well done). Remove from heat and turn off grill. Note: you can also do this in a large skillet. Heat your skillet over medium-high heat and grease with cooking oil. Cook lamb chops for 3 minutes on each side.
    2. Make the topping: Combine diced strawberries, minced red onion, minced mint, truffle oil, olive oil, and lemon juice in a bowl. Stir, and season with salt & pepper to taste.
    3. Serve lamb chops hot with strawberry mint truffle mixture on top.

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