I love Mediterranean food. For as long as I can remember, I have been in love with hummus. As a dip, as a sandwich spread, just give me a big spoonful of it and I’ll be happy. It comes with no surprise that I crave chicken shwarma or beef kebabs at least once a week. In order to curb my cravings for this week, I put together the ultimate Mediterranean platter. Halal chicken skewers served with za’atar hummus, marinated cherry tomatoes, seasoned feta, brown rice pilaf, and tzatziki is the only way to have a Meditteranean feast. Get ready to loosen your belts!halal chicken skewershalal chicken skewershalal chicken skewers

Serves 4

1059

Halal Chicken Skewers

1 hr, 45 Total Time

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Ingredients

    Halal chicken
  • 2 lb chicken breast or thighs, cut into strips
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tbsp garlic, minced
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • Brown rice pilaf
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp garlic, minced
  • 1 cup short grain brown rice
  • ¼ cup white wine
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • Tzatziki
  • 1 tsp garlic, minced
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt
  • ¼ cup grated cucumber
  • 1 tsp fresh dill
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • salt and pepper
  • Hummus
  • 14 ounce canned chickpeas plus 1/3 cup reserved juices
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 1 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp za'atar seasoning
  • Marinated cherry tomatoes
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • Feta
  • 1 cup feta, cut into large chunks
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes

Instructions

  1. Prepare the chicken. Blend the ingredients for the marinade (lemon juice – olive oil). Season the chicken with salt and pepper and pour marinade on top. Let sit for at least one hour and up to 4 hours.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare the brown rice. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a medium pot over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and saute for 30 seconds or until aromatic. Add the brown rice and toast for 1 minute, stirring frequently. Add the white wine and bring to a boil. When the white wine has almost all evaporated, add the chicken stock. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to low. Continue to cook for 50 minutes or until the liquid has evaporated and the rice is tender. Turn off the heat and let sit for at least 10 minutes before removing the lid.
  3. Prepare the tzatziki. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Let sit for 30 minutes or overnight.
  4. Prepare the hummus. Combine the chickpeas with the remaining ingredients except for the olive oil, za'tar and reserved juices in a blender. With the blender on, slowly add the reserved chickpea juices until smooth. Drizzle in the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle za'atar on top. Set aside.
  5. Make the marinated cherry tomatoes. Combine halved tomatoes with remaining ingredients, seasoning with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  6. Season the feta with salt, pepper, olive oil, and red pepper flakes.
  7. Heat the grill to medium-high. Remove the chicken from the marinade and skewer the chicken. Cook on the grill for 5-7 minutes, turning them over once grill marks appear. Remove from heat.
  8. Serve halal chicken skewers with brown rice pilaf, tzatziki, hummus, marinated cherry tomatoes, and seasoned feta.
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**Helpful tips and common mistakes

You can choose to make one, two or all of the components of this platter. I strongly encourage you to prepare them all, but it does require a bit of time and effort. To make life easier, you can prepare the hummus, tzatziki and marinated cherry tomatoes the day before.

There are many tips out there on how to produce the best hummus. I’ve heard peeling the chickpeas results in a smooth hummus or boiling them for 20 minutes before pureeing makes it extra creamy. In all honesty, I found that using a Vitamix is the quickest method of making creamy, smooth hummus. I mean, let’s be real. Who has time to peel the skins off chickpeas?! Simply blend everything up together in a Vitamix until smooth, slowly drizzling in the reserved canned juices and olive oil. If you don’t have a Vitamix, use a food processor and let it run for a couple of minutes. If you want to go the extra step, strain the hummus through a fine sieve. Finish with a sprinkle of za’atar seasoning for that extra special touch.halal chicken skewersOn the day of, start by marinating the halal chicken. Let it sit for no more than 4 hours since the high amount of lemon can over-tenderize the chicken, making it mushy and stringy (yuck!). Skewer the chicken and grill when it’s ready. You can also bake the halal chicken skewers or even cook them on the stovetop.marinating halal chicken While the chicken is marinating, cook the brown rice pilaf. A little white wine, chicken stock, and garlic can turn ordinary brown rice into incredible brown rice. This is my go-to recipe for any type of grain pilaf. Substitute the brown rice for white rice, quinoa, farro, barley, pretty much any grain, adjusting the amount of chicken stock as needed.

Season the feta with salt, pepper, a healthy drizzle of olive oil and red pepper flakes and all of your components are ready to go.halal chicken skewersThis halal chicken skewers platter was beyond words. I knew it was going to be good but I didn’t think it was going to be AMAZING. But then again, how can you go wrong with amazing sauces and sides? Heat up some pita bread, grab a plate, and get ready to go to town.halal chicken skewers

 

Looking for someone to come to your house and prepare these dishes for you? It is possible! If you are in Los Angeles and looking for a private chef, please feel free to contact me. For more information, visit Private Kitchen Los Angeles.

 

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