Archive for August 21, 2015

Chicken Kabobs

photo of chicken on skewer

Chicken Kabobs


Chicken Kabobs, cubes of chicken breast marinaded with Mediterranean/Middle Eastern spices. Complimented with decadent fruit and veggies, an experience of mouth watering flavors and textures.


  • 3 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast split in half, then chop into 1 inch thick cubes
  • 18 Bamboo skewers (10 inch / 25.4cm)
  • 2 large bell peppers chopped into cubes
  • 2 large red bell peppers chopped into cubes
  • 2 medium onion (purple) chopped
  • 1 pint /cherry tomatoes yellow or red
  • 2 large zucchini chopped medium 1 inch thick (square or round)
  • 1 medium pineapple or can pineapple chunks (drain juice)photo of kabob ingredients
  • 4 Tbsp. crushed Garlic and juice (if using the jar)
  • 4 Tbsp. ground Coriander
  • 4 Tbsp. ground Ginger
  • 4 Tbsp. ground Sumac
  • 4 Tbsp. smoked Paprika
  • 3 1/2 Tbsp. Cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp. ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. Grapeseed oil


  1. Rinse chicken breast under cold running water and pat dry before chopping and adding seasoning.
  2. Wash and rinse all fruits and produce before using.
  3. Soak skewers in cold water for one hour before adding chicken, fruit and veggies.
  4. Cut your chicken, fruits and veggies one inch thick; see my tips below.

NOTE: My Chicken Kabob recipe gives you a choice, “To grill or not to grill”?

Cooking Method One

Preparation before grilling
  1. In a small bowl add cinnamon, coriander, ginger, sumac, paprika and black pepper then stir very well with a fork.
  2. In a large bowl add all of your chicken cubes, grapeseed oil and minced garlic. With your fingers or a fork coat your chicken
  3. Now add all of your dry spices to the large bowl of chicken and minced garlic cubes. Make sure to coat chicken on all sides.
  4. Cover and place in refrigerator for one hour or overnight for more intense flavor.
  5. After chopping fruit and veggies, place them in individual medium size bowls and set aside until ready to use.
  6. Remove chicken from refrigerator and prepare to arrange your skewers.
  7. Starting with skewer point, you can begin to arrange and create your kabobs or follow my photo as your guide.
  8. Leave about three and one half inch clearing at the bottom of the skewer for handling.
  • You are now ready to place chicken kabobs on a nice hot grill. Place a little space between each Chicken Kabobs, this will insure no problems when you turn them over to cook on the other side.
  • Allow chicken kabobs to cook three to four minutes on each side and keep a close eye out so that they do not burn.

Cooking Method Two

Preparation for Baked Kabobs
  1. Preheat oven at 450 degrees, thirty minutes before placing Chicken Kabobs in oven to bake.
  2. Place a layer of parchment paper over two long cookie sheets.
  3. Please follow direction 1-8 under “preparation before grilling”.
  4. After arranging chicken cubes, fruit and veggies onto your skewers, place them onto the cookie sheets and leave a bit of space between each skewer.
  • Place cookie sheets on middle rack and cover with foil. Do not let foil touch kabobs.
  • Kabobs should cook for 15-17 minutes then remove foil and give them five more minutes of baking time before removing from oven.
  • Keep a close eye out, so that chicken kabobs do not dry out.
  • You may baste kabobs with a brush of lemon and grapeseed mixture. This is of course optional.

Preparation time: 25 minutes
Cooking time: 6-8 minutes on the grill / 15-20 minutes in the oven
Total time: 33 minutes (grill; max) / 45 minutes (oven; max)
Servings: 6-10

Chef Ann Tips

  • The main plan for this delightful Chicken Kabob recipe, is for you to have fun and be creative!
  • Here are a few good pointers; Purchase nice plump boneless skinless chicken breast. You can butterfly them or ask the butcher.
  • Another matter you will need to attend; or again you can ask your butcher to remove the white tendon that runs along the inside of each chicken breast. It can be bothersome because it is tough and might be difficult for some to remove.
  • Be mindful when chopping your chicken breast; the larger your chunks equal longer cooking time. You will also need to cut your fruit and veggies the same size. Keep in mind that fruit and vegetables always cook quicker than your meat.
  • Your chicken cubes will shrink a little during the cooking process. Whatever you do, remember to soak those skewers in cold water. This will keep them from burning in the oven or on the grill.
  • I thought it might be nice to introduce some of you to an unfamiliar spice that is widely used in the middle east.
  • Since the origin of Kabobs is Middle Eastern, I thought it would be nice to take a moment and feature this most tasty spice called “Sumac”. The taste is citrus-like resembling the tartness of a lemon. I like to use it in place of salt in some of my recipes.
  • It is fairly new to North American cooking. My hope is that you will try it and like it because it is truly a nice substitute for salt, and adds a wonderful charm to any dish or beverage you prepare.
  • If you don’t find it at your local market, try any Mediterranean /Middle Eastern market and you are sure to find it. Check expiration date and any signs of discoloration or lumpiness.
  • Be sure to store this spice in a cool dry place away from light and air.
  • My Chicken Shish Kabob recipe is delicious over a bed of saffron rice and a drizzle of fresh squeezed lemon, mint, honey and yogurt sauce.
  • My chicken kabobs are arranged according to how my taste buds are satisfied. So be encouraged, be creative and let your taste buds guide you!

Buon Appetito my friends


Ziyad Premium Quality Mediterranean SeasoningSumac spice


Eggplant Casserole

photo of eggplant n dish

Eggplant Casserole


Eggplant Casserole, Just think comfort when it comes to this great entrée. Enjoy the tasty flavors that await you. Deliciousness to the very last bite.


  • 2 medium large (purple) Eggplant sliced 1/4 in thick (round)
  • 1 large red onion sliced very thin
  • 3 large Portabella caps sliced medium thin
  • 2 cups of chopped smoked turkey (turkey breast or leg)
  • 2 cups of shredded Mozzarella cheese (reduced fat)
  • 3 scallions diced
  • 1 large zucchini chopped 1/4 in thick (round)
  • 2 tbsp. of evoo (extra virgin olive oil)
  • 1/4 cup of chicken stock (low sodium)
  • 2 eggs beaten and a dash of sea salt
  • 1/2 cup of Cashew milk

    photo of a large eggplant

    Large firm Eggplant


  • Crushed Basil and marjoram sprinkle over eggplant
  • Dried parsley and garlic powder over portabella slices
  • Dried Oregano, and lemon pepper over zucchini


Wash and rinse all produce well before use.

Cut off both ends of the eggplant and zucchini, discard before you start to prep for this recipe.

Preheat oven at 450 degrees

Preparation before cooking:

  1. Pour eggs into 1/2 cup of Cashew milk and set aside.
  2. You will need an 11 x 7 baking dish or 2 quart (1.9 liter)
  3. Pour chicken stock into the bottom of the baking dish and add eggplant circles. Season with crushed basil and marjoram. Layer with onions then chunks of turkey and shredded mozzarella.
  4. Now place zucchini circles and sprinkle dried oregano and lemon pepper seasoning and add onions on top.
  5. Begin to layer eggplant and a drizzle of evoo. Season with basil and marjoram, then a layer of shredded mozzarella and turkey chunks.
  6. Start placing your beautiful rustic portabella slices and season with dried parsley and garlic powder.
  7. Layer eggplant then a drizzle of evoo. Season with basil and marjoram before adding onion, turkey chunks and shredded mozzarella.
  8. Now top with a layer of zucchini, oregano and lemon pepper.
  9. Repeat process, but be sure that eggplant is the top layer with no added evoo.
  10. Pour your egg and milk mixture over the entire eggplant casserole and add crushed basil, marjoram, some sliced onions, shredded mozzarella and diced scallions.
Preparation while cooking:

Lower oven temperature to 375


Cover and place Eggplant Casserole in oven for 50 minutes

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 50 minutes
Total time: 1 hour and 5 minutes
Servings: 6 – 8

Chef Ann Tips for Eggplant Casserole

Be sure to choose a deep purple eggplant with tight skin and heavy for its size. Be sure it has no blemishes or discoloration.

Keep eggplant in the crisper section of your refrigerator. It will keep nicely for several days after purchase.

Those of you who love eggplant are sure to enjoy this Eggplant Casserole.

It is most important that you pick a firm eggplant, this insures freshness and great taste! Fresh herbs and spices are of equal importance, but for those of you unable to find them use seasonings available to you and be sure to check expiration dates.

An all time favorite of mine is the Trader Joe’s (21 seasoning Salute) this is delicious on eggplant and zucchini. If you don’t have basil, marjoram or parsley go with this blend and you will be equally delighted!

This Eggplant Casserole freezes very well, should you have left overs. Also; if you wish to serve a smaller party, cut back and use one large eggplant and maybe two portabella caps, a medium size zucchini perhaps one and a 1/2 cups of chopped turkey and 1/4 cup of cashew milk with one egg instead of two. You can play around with the portions a bit.

Cooking time: reduced by ten to twelve minutes making serving size four to six.

Buon Appetito

Helpful information

Eggplant – wiki | Eggplant – | Eggplants: How to choose, store and prepare – LA Times