WGN Entertainment Critic Dean Richards shares his recipes for 4 different kabobs for Memorial Day: Greek Chicken Kabobs, BBQ Pork Tenderloin Kabobs, Middle Eastern Lamb Kabobs and Vegetable Kabobs.
Greek Chicken Kabobs
- 4 tbsp. olive oil, divided
- 2 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tbsp. lemon zest
- 1 tsp. paprika
- 2 tsp. dried oregano
- 2 tsp. dried basil
- 1 tsp. dried thyme
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 shallot, minced
- Kosher salt and ground black pepper
- 2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch chunks
- In a medium bowl, combine 2 tbsp. olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, paprika, oregano, basil, thyme, garlic, shallot, 1 1/4 tsp. salt and 1 1/4 tsp. pepper
- Stir in chicken until well combined, marinate for at least 2 hours overnight, turning occasionally.
- Drain chicken from the marinade
- Thread chicken onto water-soaked wooden skewers
- Brush with remaining 2 tbsp. olive oil, season with salt and pepper to taste. (Dean recommends using one skewer for all-chicken and a separate vegetable skewer, due to different cooking times)
- Preheat grill to medium heat
- Add skewers to grill and cook, turning occasionally, until chicken is completely cooked through, reaching an internal temperature of 165 degrees, about 10 minutes.
- Top with a squirt of fresh lemon, serve immediately.
BBQ Pork Tenderloin Kabobs
- 1 1/2 lbs. pork tenderloin, trimmed of fat and the silver skin on the tenderloin. Cut into 1-inch pieces.
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder. (Dean recommends Old Arthur’s Gold Dust Dry Rub)
- Heat grill on high until it reaches 500 degrees, then turn one burner down to low.
- Rub pork tenderloin chunks all over with extra-virgin olive oil, then season with desired seasonings. (Don’t marinate pork in anything with sugar, such as honey, brown sugar and maple syrup as it will burn while searing the outside of the pork)
- Thread pork chunks onto water-soaked wood skewers. (All pork or alternate onion, green pepper and mushrooms)
- Add pork to high-heat side of the grill, then grill for 1 1/2 minutes on all four sides, for a total of 6 minutes, keeping the lid closed between flipping.
- Move pork tenderloin to the side of the grill with low heat and then grill for an additional 4 minutes on each side, or until thermometer reads 140 degrees, keeping the lid closed between flipping.
- A few minutes before removing, baste pork with favorite BBQ sauce (Dean recommends Famous Dave’s Sweet & Zesty)
- Let pork rest for 10 minutes prior to serving.
Middle Eastern Lamb Kabobs
- 1 lb. ground or minced lamb
- 1 onion, peeled and finely diced
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
- 2 tbsp. chopped fresh mint (or 3 tbsp. dry mint)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 12 cherry tomatoes
- 1 cup tzatziki (yogurt with mint or cucumber)
- 8 bamboo skewers
- Soak the skewers in a shallow dish of water.
- Put the lamb into a bowl with the onion, garlic, mint, salt and pepper. Mix together.
- Shape into large cigar-like shapes around the water soaked wooden skewers. Cover and chill.
- Preheat the grill to medium/high.
- Put the kabobs on the grill for 10 minutes.
- Turn kabobs, grill for about 5 more minutes or until an instant read thermometer reads 160 degrees.
- Serve kabobs with tomatoes and tzatziki, garnish with sprig of mint.
- 8 wooden or bamboo skewers
- 1 zucchini, cut into 1-inch slices
- 1 yellow squash, cut into 1-inch slices
- 1/2 lb. whole fresh mushrooms
- 1 red onion, cut into chunks
- 12 cherry tomatoes
- 1 red bell pepper, cut into chunks
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1 1/2 tsp. dried basil
- 3/4 tsp. dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/8 tsp. black pepper
- Soak skewers in water for 10 to 20 minutes.
- Preheat grill for medium heat and lightly oil the grate.
- Alternately thread zucchini slices, yellow squash slices, mushrooms, onion, tomatoes and bell pepper onto water-soaked skewers.
- Whisk olive oil, basil, oregano, salt and black pepper in a bowl.
- Brush mixture over vegetables.
- Cook skewers on preheated grill, medium heat, until vegetables are tender and slightly charred.
- Turn and baste vegetables with olive oil mixture occasionally for 10 to 15 minutes.