Quick Cook: Kid-pleasing (and grown-up pleasing!) chicken shawarma

This quick and tasty chicken dinner makes the case for a well-stocked pantry. A few spices, some garlic and olive oil create a flavorful marinade that works beautifully for cubed chicken thighs or breasts. Our families both love this dish as the centerpiece of a meze-style platter, served alongside warm pita, cubed feta cheese, olives and a simple salad of sliced onion, cucumber and tomatoes. This chicken would also be wonderful served atop a salad or grain bowl.

The tahini-yogurt sauce is an “almost instant” condiment that brings the meal together — stir it together while the chicken is cooking. If you don’t have tahini on hand, you can add a cool, creamy element to the plate by substituting store-bought hummus or even a dollop of plain yogurt sprinkled with a pinch of salt, a grind of pepper and fresh or dried herbs (we like dill, parsley, mint and/or cilantro).

The marinated chicken can be roasted, sauted or grilled. If you go the grill route, cut the pieces larger so they don’t dry out over the flames. Prefer the oven path? Roast some chopped veggies on the baking sheet alongside the chicken for a quick and easy side dish.

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Serves 4

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons olive oil

4 cloves garlic, finely minced

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon paprika

½ teaspoon ground turmeric

Juice of a whole lemon

Salt and pepper to taste

1½ pounds chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch cubes

Tahini-yogurt sauce:

½ cup yogurt

2 tablespoons tahini

Juice of half a lemon (about 2 tablespoons)

Finely chopped dill to taste

Directions:

Combine the olive oil, garlic, coriander, cumin, paprika, turmeric, lemon juice, salt and pepper to make a marinade. Add the cubed chicken and marinate overnight in the refrigerator — or for as little as 30 minutes.
Heat oven to 350 degrees and prepare a baking sheet by lining it with foil or parchment paper.
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Add the marinated chicken, shaking off excess marinade as you add each piece to the tray. Roast for 30 minutes or until just cooked through, then broil for

Source:: The Mercury News – Lifestyle

      

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