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Hello everyone! Or Herkese Merhaba! as the gentle folks in Turkey may say.
I felt I needed to add a little clarification here since I’ve definitely taken better banner photos than this one, yet I still wanted to show the plate that encompasses the entirety of my most recent undertaking.
Here are a couple of stock photos that can better show what I’m doing here.
Holy fucking shit would you look at that glorious motherfucker!
Oh, here’s another.
photo courtesy of youtube.com
Goddamn right folks. We’re making us some chicken shawarma! Or I guess we can call it “shawarma” since it’s actually grilled chicken with shawarma spices. I also made a few tasty accompaniments to go along with it that maybe you will notice in my otherwise pretty crappy photo up there.
Most of you fine, genteel folks are probably pretty familiar with this dish since you obviously have advanced tastes in cuisine based on the fact that you read this instructive and expansive culinary handbook on a weekly basis.
I thank you for that.
There may be a few out there who are maybe confused or possibly even frightened by this odd sounding dish.
Well it’s time to broaden your food horizons and also time to broaden some narrow-ass world views. This shit is fucking delicious!
Fun story time.
As many of you are aware the Sunday Gravy recipe you read each week was actually prepared the week before. I tried doing it all on the same weekend and that shit is goddamn ridiculous.
Anyway! One of my rituals is taking the photos that you see in these posts, selecting the best one and posting it to Facebook for all of the “Oohs” and “That looks delicious” comments I get. It’s true, I am a shameless attention whore. Guilty as charged. So I posted the banner image last week to a ton of positive responses and one “Im not so sure about this meal”(sp) response.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who maybe tracked down an old girlfriend on Facebook that I still had phantom feelings for – first true love fucks with you that way – only to find out that the girl in question turned into a major methhead, actually served jail time, lost most of their teeth and aged as if they were living on the fucking planet Mercury instead of the Earth.
It’s an age-old story that happens to most of us.
You guessed it. That was her with the “Im not so sure about this meal” response. She hardly ever comments on my Facebook feed at all and to be honest after speaking with her one time I NEVER interact with her tainted ass. So the one comment in years is showing her narrow goddamn food vision and dropping criticism on a perfectly delicious meal based on the name.
Jesus, I dodged a goddamn bullet getting dumped by that one back in the early 80’s.
Shawarma is insanely delicious food, get the fuck over it’s name and country of origin fer Chrissake! Am I allowed to say “Jesus” and “fer Chrissake” on Easter?
Too goddamn late!
Shawarma is tasty seasoned grilled meat who’s origins can be traced back to The Ottoman Empire in Turkey in the middle 1800’s. It’s based on grilled meat skewers. Who doesn’t love a delicious meat skewer? It can be made as a simple skewer but the traditional version is meat that has been layered on a spit and alternated with layers of fat and stacked high only to be slowly roasted rotisserie style by a slow, gradual turning.
Look at this again for the general gist.
While I would just fucking LOVE being able to do that it would require a lot of goddamn meat, a lot of goddamn roasting – sometimes up to a day – and one of these motherfuckers here:
I would indeed love to own this beauty but A) that fucker is $1,200 bucks, 2) I don’t have the counter space for that and bee) that shit would not be recommended for a kitchen in a townhouse style condo.
We’re going to just marinate some chicken with the proper spices, fire up my charcoal grill, make the proper accoutrements and serve this shit up proper.
Let’s do this shit!
Chicken Shawarma, yogurt tahini sauce, homemade hummus and garlic sauce.
Grab a couple 2-3 pounds of boneless chicken breasts or thighs.
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly toasted and ground cumin seeds – of course! You can use ground cumin too.
1 teaspoon of coriander.
1 teaspoon of paprika.
1 1/2 teaspoons of cayenne. Just do it dammit!
1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon.
5 or so tablespoons of olive oil.
1 1/2 tablespoons of salt.
2 teaspoons of ground black pepper.
As you may remember I usually use chicken breasts that I have cut in half for easier grilling placement and doneness. Put that halved chicken into a 1 gallon ziptop freezer bag.
Combine all of the spices and seasonings together in a medium sized bowl. Next start adding the olive oil to the spice mixture. You want a thin paste-like consistency here. Pour the mixture into the freezer bag on top of the chicken. rub the mix all over the chicken or just close the ziptop and sqoosh that shit around to ensure the chicken has been fully coated with the spice mixture. Like so.
Now get that chicken into the fridge and let marinate for at least 4 hours or all the way up to overnight. I place the bag of chicken into a large bowl before refrigerating to mitigate potential spillage issues.
You can use the marinating time to prepare your other sauce-like items, which I highly recommend doing but I’m going to finish the entire chicken recipe before getting to the others.
This shit is easy now.
Next day, fire up your grill, remove the chicken from the fridge to get it to room temperature, get that fucking grill up to cooking temp and get this shit on!
Fuck yes it’s grilling season!
I let these go for about 5-7 minutes per side since my grill was running a bit hot. Put the cover on if needed to make sure the chicken cooks in the center and then flip this motherclucker over.
The smell of the grilled meat and the aromatic spices is goddamn delightful. There’s an exotic aroma with the coriander, cinnamon and paprika thing going. Cook for another 5 minutes or so or until reaching desired doneness.
If you are working in batches, cover the chicken with some foil and let it rest for a few minutes before slicing and serving.
Back to the sauce things.
Yogurt tahini garlic dill sauce.
1 8 oz cup of plain Greek yogurt.
1 1/2 tablespoons of tahini. Be sure to stir that shit well. If it’s been in the cupboard for awhile the oil starts to separate and you really need to stir that shit to get it back to the proper consistency. Remember the tahini=peanut butter thing?
2 small cloves of minced garlic.
Juice from 1/2 of a fresh lemon.
Zest from one half of a fresh lemon.
2 tablespoons of fresh minced dill.
Add all ingredients into a medium bowl and stir to mix well.
I made this the day before grilling, covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated over night.
On the same day I made a batch of homemade hummus.
If you would like the recipe I give the entire breakdown of this tasty bastard in this post from last year. In this batch I did not use za’atar. I mixed some freshly toasted and ground cumin into the hummus and topped the finished hummus with paprika and olive oil for serving.
Remember the ingredients in hummus?
Bet your ass!
Have you ever been to a rotisserie chicken place that is also Mediterranean in origin? Ever get the chicken and they ask if you would like some hummus and “garlic sauce” with the chicken? Seriously we have tons of these chicken places in L.A.
Do you know what that garlic sauce is called?
Fuck yes. It’s called “TOUM!” and it’s pronounced just like “Tomb!” That’s fucking awesome. I want more of my condiments to sound like death metal bands. The word is Lebanese for “garlic” and I’m going tell you straight the fuck out, this shit does not fuck around. It really is condensed garlic turned into a mayo-like substance. You better love the fuck out of garlic if you want to fuck around with this bad bwoi! Did you know that garlic can be hot? I mean burn your tongue, fire up your goddamn sinuses hot? This shit’ll learn you proper.
5 cloves of garlic chopped.
1 cup of neutral oil like canola or safflower oil. NOT olive oil.
1 teaspoon of kosher salt.
The juice from the other half of that lemon that we used in the yogurt dill sauce.
3 tablespoons of ice water.
Get out your handy food processor and add in the garlic and salt and grind away. Stop a couple of times and scrape down the sides of the processor bowl. This should take about 2-3 minutes. Next add in the lemon juice and pulse a few times just to incorporate. Now this is where it becomes a pain in the ass. We are going to SLOWLY drizzle in the cup of oil while the food processor is whirling away. How slow? That cup of oil will be drizzled in over the course of about 7 minutes. We will stop the oil drip a couple of times to do the same slow drip thing with the ice water. Alternate every couple of minutes.
7 goddamn minutes.
I… I don’t have a photo here.
That’s because, well, I kind of fucked this up and broke the emulsion. This thing is similar to making a homemade mayonnaise since it takes a long time to blend and the emulsion can be broken if you rush.
I told you I would share my fuck-ups along with the triumphs.
If you squint at the banner image again you may notice a little puddle of white sauce on the side of the plate.
No, that is not jizm and get your goddamn mind out of the gutter. That’s fucking disgusting!.
It should really look like this.
Now the emulsion DID break and the sauce was too thin because I added my oil too fast, but you know what?
This shit was STILL fucking delicious. Life changing, eye-tearing, fire-breathing, sinus-clearing goddamn garlicky deliciousness. Holy shitballs!
I will continue to work on this because the flavor was amazing. Cover the toum in plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to serve. This stuff can last a month or so in the refrigerator.
Finally I made my famous rosemary, garlic roasted potatoes that you have seen many times before. It’s wedges of potatoes tossed with olive oil, fresh rosemary, – how fresh?
minced garlic and sprinkled with salt. Roast in a 350 oven for about 50 minutes.
The potatoes come out like this.
There’s some naan on the side that I grilled on my charcoal grill when the chicken was finished.
Get your serving plate and serve up. I tried to be authentic with the naan but you could have just thrown the grilled chicken and the sauce substances in a big ol’ tortilla and rolled that shit up.
One more time, here’s that crappy photo.
That’s the sliced chicken, covered with some of the yogurt tahini sauce sitting on the naan on the top of the plate, potatoes next to it, clockwise heading down is the fresh hummus followed by the TOUM!
Just spectacular. So much flavor. Smokey, spiced chicken, fresh rosemary garlic potatoes and the nuclear blast of the TOUM!
Yes, you can say this is a garlic forward meal.
There you go folks.
Branch out. Try new things and try new cuisines and explore the world with your taste buds.
I can tell you this. “Im very fucking sure of this meal!” Christ what a dingbat.
Until next time, remember:
Birbirlerine hoşnut olmak.
That means be nice to each other.