Monday, August 18, 2008

Chicken Shawarma and Rice Pilaf

If you haven't already noticed, I have a penchant for Mediterranean cuisine. I like everything that's grilled, yellow and has cheese. My boyfriend and I used to go for gyros all the time when I lived near a Middle-Eastern shop but we realized that it was probably not a good idea because the meat was often laden with dripping fat and the tzatziki sauce was made from heavy cream. We would supplement the gyros with pints of beer at the brewpub next door.

But anyway, my point is that I love Mediterranean/Middle-Eastern grilled meat and trying to make it healthy enough for an everyday meal is difficult. Here's my attempt at making Chicken Shawarma on a grill pan with no added fat. We used a non-dairy tahini sauce we bought from Whole Foods, but I have attached a tahini sauce recipe that works well.

Chicken Shawarma and Rice Pilaf
Serves 4

1/2 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/4 tsp each of:
Ground coriander
Ground cinnamon
Ground cloves
Ground black pepper
Ground fennel
Turmeric powder

1/2 tsp each of:
Curry powder
Ground cumin
Minced garlic

1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp olive oil

Slice the chicken breasts very thinly, add it into a Ziploc bag with all the spices, lemon juice and olive oil and marinade for at least 3 hours.

You can either grill the chicken or bake it. If you're baking, set the oven to 375° and bake covered with foil for 10 minutes and uncovered for another 10 minutes.

Serve the grilled chicken with lettuce, tomatoes and onions on a Greek pita bread with tahini and garlic sauce.

Rice Pilaf
Serves 4

1 cup basmathi or long grain rice
1.25 cup chicken broth
1 tsp dried parsley flakes
1 small strand saffron OR 2 tsp turmeric powder
Salt and Pepper to taste

Wash rice in cold water, drain and set over medium heat. Pour in chicken broth and all remaining ingredients. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Turn heat off and let stand for 5 minutes, fluff and serve.

Easy Creamy Tahini Garlic Sauce

7 or 8 cloves garlic
2 tbsp sesame seeds
2 tbsp Greek yogurt
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp sea salt

Process all ingredients in a blender. Refrigerate before serving.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

oh Yum! I've always been a fan of shawarma....the smokiness just gets to me! Thanks for have a yummy blog here, would love to exchange links with ya!