We try to eat fairly healthy most of the time (despite what my friends think, since I usually cook butter-laden Southern food for them) and healthy usually involves chicken and fish. I could eat fish in some form every single day, but the Young Son is not crazy about it so I try to fix it when I know he won’t be home. He’s not crazy about chicken either, but hey, you can’t always have things your way, so we have chicken at least a couple times a week.
If you’re going to serve chicken frequently, you need to change it up or it will definitely get boring. One of our favorites is barbecue chicken kebabs. I love any kind of kebabs because they make a quick supper. Use chicken or beef, or just vegetables, marinate for a bit and then throw on the grill and they will be done in about ten minutes. Perfect for a quick dinner during the week or for a get together with friends on a Saturday night.
For this recipe, start with chicken breasts and chop into one inch cubes for kebabs. Place the kebabs in a large bowl and sprinkle with two teaspoons kosher salt, then place in the refrigerator for 20-30 minutes. Remove from the fridge and stir in 4 tablespoons barbecue rub, then set aside. These are called spicy barbecue chicken kebabs because if you use my recipe for the dry rub and the barbecue sauce they will be, well, spicy. But you can use any dry rub and sauce of your choice if you would like less heat, or you can alter my recipes to include less cayenne and chili powder.
Chop two slices of bacon and then run the chopped pieces through the food processor to make a paste. Scrape the paste into the bowl of chicken and using your hands or spoon, mix well until the chicken is thoroughly covered with the bacon.
Now thread the chicken onto skewers and get ready to grill. I usually put about 6 on a skewer and give them a little space to cook.
My grill is a gas grill, so I preheat for 10-15 minutes until it’s nice and hot. Be sure your grates are clean and place the chicken onto the grill. Grill for about two minutes then turn the chicken to the other side. Turn again after two minutes, and again after two more minutes. Gently brush sauce onto the chicken. After a couple of minutes, turn again and dot sauce on that side. One inch pieces of chicken should take about 8 minutes to cook and should register 160 degrees for breasts. When chicken is done, remove kebabs from the grill and rest on a plate for five minutes.
Serve with additional barbecue sauce. We like these with corn on the cob and a green salad.
This recipe was adapted from “Rescuing Barbecued Chicken Kebabs” in Cook’s Illustrated, May & June 2011.