Old School Middle Eastern Recipes with Some Modern Day Twists

Kabob

Kabob

Kabob is the perfect party dish. It is juicy, flavorful, and only 2 pounds of meat can make 20 kabobs! Kabob was always a staple dish at family parties and outdoor barbecues. I have summer memories of Jiddo William and Jiddo Hikmat (jiddo means grandpa in Arabic) preparing the outdoor grill with our Tata or Nana handing off their perfectly formed kabobs.

We even have home videos of these grill masters at work. Our Baba’s (dad) voice would always be behind the camera filming our family gatherings. Baba would focus the camera on different family members and kids running around, but would make sure to include the grill masters at work. Once Jiddo William would notice the camera was on him, he would flash his signature smile. The food we share help keep these memories alive, and I’m so happy we can use this dish to honor our Jiddos! Cheers to our family’s grill masters!

This entree is great right off the grill. It’s even nice to char them just a little bit to provide a nice smokey flavor to the kabob. You can also use the stovetop if a grill is not accessible. Go ahead and double up the recipe for your next family gathering!

Kabob shaped and ready to be cooked

Kabob

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 45 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Course Main Course
Cuisine Middle Eastern
Servings 20 medium sized kabobs

Ingredients
  

  • 2 lbs ground meat (80/85% meat or 20/15% fat works)
  • 1 large onion
  • 1/2 cup parsley, curly or flat
  • 3/4 tbsp pepper
  • 1/2 tbsp salt
  • 1/2 tbsp turmeric

Instructions
 

  • Finely chop or place parsley and onion in a food processor. It is easiest to pulse the parsley and onion individually a few times in the food processor.  Squeeze onion firmly to remove excess liquid. 
  • Place meat, parsley, onion, pepper, salt and turmeric in a bowl. Mix until all ingredients are evenly distributed. Then knead the meat to incorporate all ingredients.  This will take about 5 minutes. 
  • To shape kabobs, first wet your hands with water to avoid the meat from sticking to your hands. 
  • Take about a tennis ball size of meat mixture and form into a ball. Slide onto a flat wide edge skewer. Work the meat on the skewer to elongate the shape. The meat should be no more than 1/4 inch thick on each side of the skewer when complete.
  • While still on skewer clamp down on the meat to create ridges along the length of the kabob, distance between each ridge is about 1/4 inch. 
  • Heat grill or stovetop to medium-high heat. 
  • You can directly grill kebabs on the skewer, if you skewers are grill safe. Otherwise, gently remove the kabob from the skewer and cook in a pan or indoor cast iron grill pan.*
  • Cook for about 7-10 minutes on each side, depending on the heat of your grill. Once you achieve a moderately charred color on both side of the meat, you kebab is ready!
  • Enjoy with rice or in a sandwich. Many accoutrements can often accompany kebab – onions with sumac sprinkling, jajeek, pickled cabbage, pickled turnips or cauliflower (aka, turshi, recipe coming soon)!

Notes

* When removing uncooked meat from skewer, the shape may alter a little. That is ok. Reshape to kebab to original form once removed.
It’s helpful to submerge the skewers in water before forming the kabob. The damp skewers will not burn on the grill as easily.
Keyword Kabob, parsley



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