Kabob Party- Pollo Spiedini, Italian Chicken Skewers

Welcome to my Kabob Party Day Three. Well, Spiedini party…

I am presenting gorgeous grilled goodies here every day for a week. That’s seven skewers lined up on the BBQ, because everybody likes food on a stick!

Today I have yet another simple summer skewer. It’s just one ingredient grilled to perfection and served with a condiment that makes it a complete experience.

Tomorrow I will start sticking a few varied combinations of ingredients on these sticks. But for today I am grilling up boneless chunks of chicken thighs, and nothin’ but… I generally prefer the dark meat, especially for grilling. White meat can get so dried out and flavorless in the wrong hands. It’s much harder to overcook thighs, even when boneless. So it a good candidate for skewers. Because I as said yesterday a Kobob Party is perfect for seasonal entertaining because the prep can be done in advance. The cooking is so simple even the non-cooks amongst can handle the culinary task. Leaving you time to throw your magic behind some other aspect of the meal.

Today’s recipe comes from the magazine La Cucina Italiana word for word. Even the photo looks similar (how’d that happen??). Somebody must have told them what I am up to because they have a whole feature in the August 2010 issue dedicated to spiedini (Italian Grilled Skewers). Pick up the issue if you still have not had enough grilled meat by the end of this week!

marinating chicken thighsI have chosen Spiedini di Pollo con al Cetriolo (Chicken Skewers with Chopped Cucumber, Arugula & Olives)

I should have known that the Italians would embrace the idea of grilled meat on a stick because it is often served al fresco. Which seems so very much in tune with seasonal Italian dining and is well-suited to simple ingredients served at their very best, often in a casual setting.

These chicken kabobs are marinated in a simple combination of white wine, garlic, and rosemary. Then they are quickly grilled over a hot flame and served with a flavorful mixture of cucumber, arugula, and olives with just a hint of heat in the form of red pepper flakes. It’s what I would refer to as a tapenade and it takes these simple summer skewers and really elevates them with bold flavor.

Chicken Spiedini Skewers with Chopped Cucumber, Arugula & Olives serves 4 CLICK here for a printable recipe

  • 1 3⁄4 lb boneless chicken thighs, cut into 32 pieces
  • 1⁄2 c dry white wine
  • 2 clv garlic, thinly sliced
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper, as needed
  • oil for grill
  • 1 c finely chopped, peeled and seeded cucumber
  • 1⁄3 c finely chopped arugula
  • 1⁄3 c finely chopped kalamata olives
  • 3⁄4 t fresh thyme leaves
  • 1⁄4 t red pepper flakes
  • very good olive oil for drizzling

Pollo Spiedini from Sippity SupIn a large bowl, combine chicken, wine, garlic, and rosemary; stir to combine. Cover mixture and marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Prepare a charcoal grill for direct-heat cooking over medium-hot coals (medium-high for gas).

Thread chicken pieces onto 8 skewers season with salt and pepper. Grill skewers on a lightly oiled grill rack, turning frequently until chicken is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Transfer skewers to a large serving plate.

In a bowl stir together cucumber, arugula, olives, thyme and red pepper flakes. Spoon mixture over skewers and drizzle with olive oil.


Greg Henry

Sippity Sup