Lamb Kebabs & Yogurt
Marinated lamb kebabs served served with a special yogurt-dill sauce.
8 metal or wooden skewers (see sidebar)
Sauce & Garnish: in a small bowl, combine yogurt with salt and dill. Set aside. In a skillet, cook cubed tomatos in 1 T oil for 5 minutes over low heat. Set aside.
Assembly: prepare grill or broiler. Drain lamb from marinade and divide equally among 8 skewers. Alternate lamb cubes with tomatoes (keeing a 1/2" between each). Grill or broil kebabs, turning frequently, for about 10 minutes, to desired level of doneness.
Serve: Push meat and tomotoes off skewers and arrange on a platter or individual plates. (Or keep kebabs on the skewers for visual affect.) Spoon yogurt/dill sauce over all, or serve on the side.
Tips & Glossary
You may not have all the ingredients used in Turkish cooking on your spice shelf, but you'll find them at Middle-East food stores. To avoid frustration, make a list of items you need before trying out the recipes.
Cumin: an aromatic, kin to parsley and carrots; an important ingredient in chili powder. Used especially in Indian curries, as well as in Mid-Eastern, Mexican, and Asian dishes. It has an earthy, peppery flavor.
Filo: aka phyllo, paper-thin sheets of raw, unleavened flour dough. Buy frozen in any grocery store and follow directions on package for thawing. When working with one sheet, keep others covered with a damp towel to prevent drying out.
Peeled Tomatoes: choose 1 of 2 methods: 1) hold tomatoes one-at-a-time over gas flame till skin bubbles and becomes charred; 2) drop all tomatoes into pot of boiling water for 45 seconds. After either method, run tomatoes under running water; skins will slip off easily.
Roasted peppers: buy them prepared. Or make your own: place peppers under a broiler, or hold over a gas flame, till skin chars and blisters. Place them in a closed paper bag for 15-20 minutes (to steam them). When cool enough to handle, the skins slip off under running water.
Rosewater: distilled from rose petals and used to flavor Mid-Eastern and Asian cooking. You can make your own—but why? Purchase it at Mid-East or Asian or food stores.
Saffron: the most expensive spice in the world, from the crocus plant, and cultivated in Iran and Spain. Along with its unusual taste, it adds a deep rich yellow color to food. Use a strand or two at a time and soak in warm water before using.
Skewers: use metal or wooden skewers for kabobs. If wooden, be sure to soak them for 30 minutes before using to prevent them from catching on fire.
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