Lebanese Yoghurt-Marinated Chicken Recipe
I love experimenting and trying new food but lately, I have been trying to make lighter recipes. After a trip to Senegal (which, although I greatly enjoyed, involved eating a lot of very heavy food) I was left craving lighter fare, and due to family members' various special diets, I've been trying to make something lighter.
This Lebanese-inspired dish is light, fresh, and perfect, with chicken marinated in yoghurt, mint, garlic, lemon juice, onion, and olive oil, producing a delightful savory flavor. Chicken is an excellent match for the yoghurt flavor. I try to serve it Lebanese style, with pita bread, but it pairs well with plenty of other things as well.
This recipe is an adaption of that which I had found in the book Rose Water and Orange Blossoms by Maureen Abood.
- 1 cup plain yoghurt
- 1 grated medium-sized onion
- 3 minced garlic cloves
- Juice of 1/2 of a lemon
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons dried mint
- 1.5 to 2 pounds chicken
For the optional garlic sauce:
- 5 cloves garlic
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- 2-3 tablespoons water
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Prepare the chicken for marinating, which you should plan to do 8-24 hours before it is cooked. Mix together the yoghurt, grated onion, minced garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, and mint in a bowl. Chop the chicken into 1-2" cubes and add it into the bowl, mix well, and refrigerate. The longer it refrigerates, the better.
- At some point, prepare the garlic sauce (which is optional, but I personally quite like it). Mince garlic cloves, combine with salt, and blend in food processor or blender or equivalent. Add in the oil, blend it a bit more, then add water and the oil. This can be preserved up to several weeks in refrigerator.
- Begin to prepare your coals or preheat the broiler for cooking chicken.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade (dry off some yoghurt if needed), thread it onto skewers, and season it with salt and pepper. The marinade can be discarded.
- Grill chicken for about 10 minutes on the grill (until there is a bit of blackening) or 20 minutes in the broiler. Serve with the garlic sauce drizzled over it or on the side.
© 2017 Ryan Thomas