Saturday, January 16, 2016

Shawarma-Like Chicken

Have you ever seen those towering posts of meat chunks all piled together, slowly roasting in their spices and juices at a Mediterranean eatery?

The other day I had a sample of "Shawarma Fries," and Shawarma rice bowls. I purposed to go home and fix up some kind of seasoned meat that would be similar.

Sometimes you get a little bored with all the seasonings you usually use. Not that you quit liking them, but you need something exciting once in awhile! This direction seemed fun. I looked in my cookbooks but didn't see anything right off, so I turned to my next source, the Internet. I found a good looking recipe on a food blog that I have used before.

The marinade was nicely interesting, and I had good hopes. A little nervous with the amount of cinnamon, but trust me, it works. You use a couple pounds of boneless skinless chicken, half thighs and half breasts, or all thighs if you want. I thought it was a humorous how she sort of begs you pretty-please DON'T use all breasts; they don't have enough fat in them to work right. I remember when the breasts used to be the premium cut of the chicken and cost a lot, but now it's the thighs!

I marinated overnight. Then you cut them into about 3 pieces and bake them for about 15 minutes on a baking sheet. She also gives the option of roasting over a BBQ for this step, but I saw no advantage.

After you bake them, they are sliced into shawarma-sized strips.

Then here is the interesting part. You sauté the slices in more olive oil until the smallest pieces are crispy. I went ahead and drained them in a colander.


I decided I wanted to make rice bowls, so I cooked up a skillet of rice. I like Basmati rice, so that's what I used. I took the leftover olive oil, seasoned and flavored with drippings, and used it to sauté the rice, a la Rice-a-Roni. Then I salted and watered it and cooked it.


I was really pleased with the results and consider it a "keeper."

I could print out the recipe, but really, you will enjoy making it from her pictures and descriptions much better than just my recipe words.