Chicken Kebabs with Lemon and Rosemary

Chicken, Gluten-Free, Greek, Grilling, Main Courses / Thursday, July 16th, 2009


I’m not big on cravings, but a few days ago, I needed chicken with rosemary and lemon with the intensity of a dozen Lindsay Lohan clones feverishly posting photos of their boobs on Twitter.

The rosemary!

The lemon!

I had all of the ingredients out … and then Jeff called to say he was working late.

Was I going to butterfly a chicken, marinate it for an hour and fire up the grill just for my own dinner? No. That’s why God created things like peanut butter and Fruity Cheerios. But then I remembered this recipe for Lemon-Rosemary Chicken Kebabs posted by Katie of goodLife {eats}™, my Adopt-A-Blogger partner.

Katie’s recipe follows a traditional Greek preparation for souvlaki, those towering kebabs of marinated meat grilled on skewers. Chunks of chicken are marinated in a mixture of lemon juice, water, lemon zest, rosemary and kosher salt, then tossed in olive oil, garlic and pepper and threaded on skewers. Quick and simple.

Just one problem.

I wanted to use my grill pan, but I had a Skewer Situation. The last time I used wooden skewers in the grill pan, they were too long, and I had to cut them down. Way down. They were wee. I hated babysitting them in the pan, and I hated winding up with something that looked like the plate of hors d’oeuvre Cher serves her daughters in Mermaids, minus the skewered marshmallows.

Then I remembered a certain gift of grill gadgets (thanks, Rusty and Sunny!) and there it was:  a set of nonstick circle skewers. It turns out that the rounded skewers hold just as much as a full-length wooden ones, but the curved shape allows them to fit completely inside a grill pan and on a plate. Score!

The chicken was everything I’d been craving: smoky, juicy and infused with lemon and rosemary.

So summery and quick.

I’m thinking the cooked kebabs would make a pretty fantastic picnic lunch or punchy late-afternoon snack. And since I won’t have to stand over the grill pan rotating wee small chicken skewers, I’ll have time to try the chicken gyro posted yesterday by Kevin from Closet Cooking. A pita full of chicken souvlaki, tomatoes, red onion, red peppers and feta with a little tzatziki on the side.

Much better summer fare than a bowl of Fruity Cheerios.

Lemon-Rosemary Chicken Kebabs

From Katie Goodman at goodLife {eats}™

  • Juice of 1 large lemon plus water to equal 2 cups liquid
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup fresh, chopped rosemary
  • 2 large boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  1. In a small microwave-safe bowl, combine the lemon juice, water, lemon zest, rosemary, and kosher salt. Bring mixture to a boil in the microwave, about 1-2 minutes on full power. Stir mixture until salt is dissolved, and allow it to steep for 20 minutes.
  2. Cut chicken into 1 1/2-inch chunks. Place it in a bowl or baking dish, and add the lemon juice mixture, letting the chicken soak for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare skewers by soaking in water for 30 minutes (if using wooden skewers), and preheat grill.
  3. Remove chicken from lemon mixture (discard the mixture), and  toss with olive oil, garlic and pepper. Thread skewers with the chicken. Sprinkle with rosemary. Grill over medium-high heat until chicken is cooked through. Remove from skewers and serve over a bed of wild rice or couscous.

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15 thoughts on “Chicken Kebabs with Lemon and Rosemary

  1. I'm wondering how the chicken would be served on flatbread, with spinach and melted cheese, maybe provolone, or another mild white cheese? Maybe diced tomato sprinkled on top? Do you think the flavor of the chicken would work with that plan?

  2. Oh.My.Gosh. I love souvlaki ananything, and that chicken look to die for! It's way past dinner time and now I'm hungry!

  3. I was wondering if those skewers were any good – I didn't even think about using them to save space. I just thought they were supposed to look pretty – ha! This chicken looks fantastic – I'll have to give it a try sometime :)

  4. Love the skewers and the chicken…I was going to put those skewers on my birthday list and then thought better of it because I figured they would get all tangled up in the drawer when they weren't in use and that would drive me nuts. So, do they get all tangled up in the drawer when they are not in use?

  5. I bought those skewers for a friend who loves to grill. He and his family LOVE using them! Your kebabs look gorgeous!!!!

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