Saffron Chicken Kebobs

Saffron is a great spice to use on kebobs. Remember to soak it in warm water for at least half-hour before adding it to the marinade. You will use the soaked strands as well as the soaked water as part of the marinade. Green cardamom is usually an accompanying spice with saffron, especially in Indian cuisine, so you can choose not to add it.

When I make these kebobs, I add chicken to the marinade, cover it, and refrigerate for two days. The element of time is the first wonder of the world, and 48 hours will result in an excellent kebob.

If you want to make this recipe extra special, you can add a couple of tablespoons of heavy cream to the marinade.

Basting is important while cooking kebobs, it helps retain moisture and adds to the flavor.
Serves: 3-4

1 lb chicken breasts, chopped in 2-inch cubes
1 orange bell pepper, chopped in 2-inch cubes
1/4 ghee, to baste

1/8 cup warm water
20 saffron strands
1/2 cup whole milk yogurt (or you can use 1/4 cup whole milk Greek yogurt plus 1/8 cup water)
1/4 cup pineapple, minced
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 teaspoons sea salt

Soak saffron strands in warm water for 30 minutes.
In a mixing bowl, add the remaining 'Marinade' ingredients and mix. Set aside.
After 30 minutes of soaking saffron, add saffron liquid along with the strands to the marinade. Mix.
Add chicken pieces to the marinade and mix well. Cover with a plastic wrap and refrigerate for 6 hours or preferably overnight.
Once the chicken has been marinated for the desired amount of time, skewer the chicken pieces alternating with bell pepper on 5-6 skewers. Place on a cookie sheet.
Pre-heat oven at 425 F.
Once the oven has pre-heated, place the cookie sheet into the oven and bake for 20 minutes.
Remove from the oven, and using a pastry brush, baste with ghee. 
Turn the chicken pieces. Baste again with remaining ghee.
Place the chicken pieces into the oven and cook for 15 minutes. Serve.
Note: For best flavor, you would want to grill the kebobs on an outdoor grill. Follow the directions of the manufacturer if using an outdoor grill.

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