When it comes to Middle Eastern dishes, one of the words that stand out is “kebab”. Kebabs and other forms of grilled meat are often found in a typical Middle Eastern menu. And rightly so. Something that smokey yet savory flavor adds to the charm of the spice and herb-filled dishes of the Arab Peninsula and beyond. Choose from our favorite BBQ grill list and find out how easy it is to grill at your own backyard!
Kebabs, Grilled Meat And So Much More
Traditionally speaking, kebabs are meat dishes that are grilled on a spit. Or even more common, a skewer. Much like a BBQ, a stick is pierced through meat, or pieces of, so that they are easily turned on a griller. That, and they are easily eaten once cooked.
Also known as shish kebab, this piece of food art (as we’d like to call it) is widely found in various Arabic cuisine. But, it isn’t limited to only meat. Shish kebabs also include vegetables that are skewered in between pieces of either chicken, beef, or lamb.
Vegetables such as tomatoes, red onions, bell peppers, zucchini, and others are usually the veggie pair of the infamous Mid-East BBQ. So could say that kebabs are healthy options especially for meat lovers who are not fond of eating vegetables!
BBQ Grill: Kebab History
The literal Turkish definition of the word is “meat cooked by fire.” Additionally, if we trace it back in history, even more, the Sumerian language translates the term as “kabuba,” which means “to roast.”
It has been said that roasting meat in a fire was a way to gather people as a communal practice. Moreover, some records show that this practice went as far back to ancient nomads. Hunting and gathering was the major way to earn a living and survive. And using fire to make food edible is where it all started.
Migrants in and around what is now known as the Arab nations in the middle east practiced this for centuries, too. Herbs, vegetables, and spices were then added to it, in order to create variety. And here we are today, enjoying the fruit of Middle Eastern ancestors’ labors.
Tips In Grilling
If you’re a beginner and would like to learn about the ABC’s of grilling, then this portion of the post is for you (as it is for us, for sure).
Wood skewers. If you’re not yet an old hand at this, then these will work best for you. They are easy to handle and turn. Also, since wood is a low conductor of heat, you won’t have to worry about over grilling because of these.
Even cuts. Cut the ingredients into equal portion so that your kebab pieces will be roasted together, in the same manner, at the same time. Smaller pieces roast faster than larger ones. So, simply think even cuts.
Lastly, spacing. Yes, this is a thing. Once you’ve arranged your ingredients on skewers, make sure they’re lined with tiny spaces between each one. The meat-to-vegetable-to-meat spacing should be just right. Moreover, Every skewer should have some space, one from the other. This way, the meat and veggies will be cooked evenly. Plus, you’ll avoid burning the edges but undercooking the center.