Thursday, March 14, 2013

IHCC: Kebab Krazy!

Kebabs! There are so many recipes in Jaffrey's books to choose from. Looking for something new and untried, I almost made some hamburger kebabs from one of my new Jaffrey cookbooks, but decided instead to use up some lamb from the freezer. I found an interesting kebab recipe in the Delhi chapter of A Taste of India and decided to make a meal from that chapter.

I enjoyed many episodes of this series on TV, but have not cooked very much from the book. I love looking at the pictures of various parts of India, the food and the people, but somehow the recipes haven't been that appealing. Maybe this is because the book is organized, not by courses, but by area, so its mains and sides are scattered through the book.

Skewered Lamb Kebabs (p40) are different from your usual sort of marinated and grilled kebab. Traditionaly Delhi's cubed meat kebabs are made with meat that has been partially cooked before grilling. This makes the cooking fussier, but allows the flavors to permeate the meat. 

For this recipe, the chunks of lamb first marinate for an hour in yogurt spiced with ground coriander, grated ginger, cayenne, lemon juice, oil, and salt. To start the cooking, turmeric and garam masala are mixed with more yogurt, then the meat and its marinade are stirred in. This mixture is brought to a simmer and cooked low, covered, for 30-40 minutes until the meat is almost done. Then the cover is removed and most of the liquid is boiled off, leaving a thick paste. Now you can skewer the meat cubes and either charcoal grill them or grill them under the broiler, which is what I did since bbq weather has definitely not arrived yet. 

I served the kebabs with Moghlai Spinach (p36) and Rice Cooked in an Aromatic Broth (p45), so that the whole meal was Delhi-flavored. The spinach was quite good and easy (I used frozen spinach since the fresh stuff at the store looked pretty dubious). This will make a nice addition to my repertoire of food-with-color for Indian meals. The rice was good but didn't seem like the extra effort of making a highly flavored broth added that much.

This post is shared with this week's I Heart Cooking Clubs.


  1. The marinade sounds fantastic with ginger and spices. The whole plate looks great!

  2. Delicious kebabs, Kaye. I love the idea of pre-cooking the meat in the marinade - maybe a little bit more fuss, but I'm sure it definitely pays dividends in terms of flavour and tenderness.

  3. Looks delicious! The chicken kebab I made has similar spices for the marinade. I got to invest in some metal skewers!
    I like all the different kebabs everyone made!

  4. I actually like the bamboo skewers, but the long metal ones can be suspended across the grill pan or the bbq. You can always use an extra bamboo one if you need to double-stick them to hold things steady.

    If you get some metal ones, look for flat ones (rather than round). They turn over easier and whatever's been stuck has more of a chance of staying put and not rotating when you turn them over.

  5. A very colorful plate! I think the meat I miss the most since I stopped eating it is lamb. These kebabs are making my mouth water. ;-) Great pick!

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  7. I love that you created an entire meal based on one region of India, and it looks so delicious. I must say that lamb is really a favorite of mine.