I know it’s not summer yet, but we’re already excited about grilling. Not only is it fun, quick, less messy, and a chance to be outdoors, if done right, grilling can be one of the healthiest meals you ever prepare. I made the chicken with a yogurt dip. Both recipes are inspired by Middle Eastern flavors.
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- 3 chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp each salt, pepper, garlic, ginger, all spice
- juice of 1 lemon
- 2 tbsp olive oil
Mix all seasonings in a shallow bowl. Add the chicken and make sure all pieces are coated. Marinate in the fridge for a minimum of 6 hours (before you go to work in the morning or the night before). Keep the chicken in the bowl or transfer to a tightly sealed plastic bag. I recommend placing the bag on a plate to prevent chicken juices from going everywhere in case the bag drips.
When ready to cook, turn the grill on medium-high. Insert chicken kabobs in wooden skewers, about 8 pieces in each. Grill until chicken is fully cooked.
Chicken ready to go on the grill. Food safety warning: don't return the chicken to the same plate when serving. Use a fresh clean one.
- 1-2 cups plain yogurt
- garlic powder (or fresh if you’re a garlic lover)
- Dried mint
If yogurt is from a tub you just opened, it’s probably thick, which is what you want. If not, place a paper towel in a strainer, and put the strainer on top of a bowl (to collect the fluid). Pour yogurt in and let it drain for a little. This is similar to making labaneh, but it doesn’t need to be that thick.
Mix all ingredients to taste. Go easy on the salt and garlic. Too much salt is not good for your health and too much garlic will make it bitter. Serve cold.
Speaking of yogurt and mint dips, I found this Persian yogurt dip today from Shayma (of the Spice Spoon) with roasted fresh beets. It looks so yummy!
Other than healthy grilling and healthy accompanying dips, here’s another nutrition tip for those who have or work with children. Let them help. Include them in grocery shopping, preparing dinner, setting the table, cleaning up, etc, as long as it’s safe for their age. It requires patience–I admit–but it encourages them to eat from the food you’re serving!