Friday, May 28, 2010

Organic Chicken Kabobs My Way



(c) Carrie Boyko
Grilled Chicken Kabobs
Memorial Day is sort of the unofficial kick off of Summer, even though the calendar tells us than June 21 is the true first day of the season. Honestly, summer here in Florida, begins on the day that Winter ends--Winter being that season between Thanksgiving and February 15 when the weather is spectacularly comfortable and less humid. One of the things I give thanks for every Thanksgiving is the weather--we are always able to be outside doing active things, and most often in shorts. Sorry northerners, but I couldn't resist.

Back to the real topic at hand--cookout season. Whether you call it cooking out, grilling, barbecuing, or the Aussie version,  "the Barbie", it's pretty much the same thing--outdoor cooking on some sort of grill or open fire.

It seems, when I research the health of the subject, there is no way of getting around the fact that cooking out is not great for the environment. Charcoal--nasty stuff for the ozone; natural gas--made from fossil fuel; burning wood--releases all sorts of nasties into the atmosphere. I'll admit I'm not extremely well-read on this topic, but I sure do love the taste of food cooked outside. So giving up my green badge for a day occasionally is just going to have to do. Here's one of my favorite recipes for grilling out for.

Carrie's Organic Chicken Kabobs and Grilled Vegetables
served over rice, with fresh, organic fruits and vegetables of the season

Ingredients: (to serve 4, multiply per your requirements)

  • 3-4 organic chicken breasts, washed and dried 
  • 1 medium to large organic yellow onion, sliced 1" wide at the circumference.
  • 1 each--Organic red, yellow and orange peppers, sliced about 1" wide
  • 1-1 1/2 cups white cooking wine or leftover white table wine
  • 1 cup organic Italian salad dressing (I use fat free)
  • Organic rice, your choice (I like Texmati)
  • 2 large organic carrots, grated
  • 1 cup organic green vegetables (beans, broccoli, snap peas, etc), chopped or grated fine
  • Sea salt
Instructions:

  1. Stir wine and salad dressing together in a shallow container with a lid.
  2. Beat the chicken breasts with a tenderizing mallet and then stab repeatedly with a fork, creating punctures through the meat.
  3. Cube the chicken to roughly 1-1/2" square.
  4. Add the meat to the marinade mixture and stir in well. 
  5. Cover and refrigerate for 3 days, stirring and turning meat daily. Try not to skimp on the 3 days much, as the extra time makes for a more flavorful, tender chicken.
  6. Prepare one dish of your choice of summer veggies to serve as a side.
  7. Also, create a fruit salad from the many summer fruits and berries available, choosing local whenever possible.
  8. On the big day, skewer the chicken cubes, alternating them with onions and peppers to create a colorful array. 
  9. If you have any vegetarians joining you, they will no doubt prefer a skewer of just veggies, and I would add some of the beans, broccoli, snap peas, etc to this to offer more variety for this choice.
  10. Salt and pepper to taste, cover and refrigerate until grilling time.
  11. Before time for the grill, start your rice, adding the vegetables during the last few minutes to keep them colorful and not overcooked.
  12. Grilling your kabobs won't take long, once the grill is heated up, so be prepared to turn them frequently and remove quickly--probably about 10 mintues total, depending on the size of the cubes.
  13. Serve your kabobs hot off the grill and enjoy.
If you say 'grace', be sure to give thanks for the variety of vegetables in this healthy meal. Can you count how many colorful veggies you're eating? They contain generous amounts of Lycopene and antioxidants that are great cancer fighters, making them a regular guest at my table.

Need an organic dessert recipe? Here's a few from my archives:

Organic Irish Apple Cake (no frosting, much healthier than traditional cake)
Toni's Favorite Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
Organic Cinnamon Raisin Bread


You say it's raining? 
Cook your kabobs in the broiler or on your indoor grill. 

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