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Ditch the paper plate; kebabs make a perfect hand-held campfire treat

Ditch the paper plate; kebabs make a perfect hand-held campfire treat

From the Cocktails, kebabs and a whole lot more: Your guide to outdoor cooking series
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Campfire Cooking is sponsored by Roadhouse RV and Black Diamond RV.

Yogurt is an ideal base for meat marinades. Once you try it, you’ll return to it again and again. Yogurt tenderizes, adds a bit of tang and helps to keep meat from drying out during cooking. It’s also a perfect vehicle for whatever spices you want to play with. Here, I offer two recipes. One for chicken marinated in warm, fragrant curry and garlic and the other for pork that’s spicy and lemony. Both are very easy and very delicious.

ingredients on plate

Easy ingredients make this a great camping meal!

A few tips to ensure campfire perfection. First, you want to build your fire so it’s reduced to coals – if there are active flames, you risk singeing and burning the meat. So be patient and let your fire enter the “glowing coals” stage, then you’re ready to go. Also, you want to marinate your meat for at least a few hours, if not overnight, to let the yogurt work its tenderizing magic. Last, if you are using wooden skewers, be sure to soak them in water for at least 30 minutes prior to adding the meat – if they go on the fire dry, they’ll go up in flames.

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Cook these over hot coals for the ideal flavor.

In the video, I build pita pockets with my kebabs – I like having something handheld around the fire. It’s easier than balancing a plate on your lap. I stuff warmed pita with spinach, red onion, the curried chicken and top all of that with tahini sauce – the tahini sauce recipe is below.

If you’d rather serve veggie kebabs alongside the meat, go for it. Just toss chunks of onion, mushrooms and peppers with olive oil, salt and pepper and thread onto skewers, adding them to the fire when the meat is about half-way finished. Or, you could make a foil packet with potatoes, olive oil, seasonings and onion and toss that directly on the coals while the kebabs are cooking. No matter how you serve these tender, flavorful kebabs, it’s hard to go wrong.

closeup kebab in hand

Enjoy straight off the skewer or in a perfectly hand-held pita.

Emmy-winning host Cat Neville is the publisher of Feast Magazine and the producer of tasteMAKERS, which airs nationally on PBS. She has been in food media for about 20 years and when she’s not on the road, she can usually be found playing around with new flavors in her St. Louis kitchen.

Curried Chicken Kebabs

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

• 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs

• 1 cup full-fat plain Greek-style yogurt

• 2 Tbsp curry powder (or more to taste)

• ¼ red onion, diced

• 2 garlic cloves, minced

| Preparation | If using wooden skewers, soak them in water for about 30 minutes. Cut chicken into long strips and set aside in a large bowl. In another bowl, mix the yogurt, curry, onion and garlic until thoroughly blended, then stir the yogurt mixture into the chicken, being sure to coat the chicken thoroughly. Cover and marinate in the fridge for a few hours or, even better, overnight. Thread chicken onto skewers and cook over a glowing coals in your fire pit, or on a grill at medium-high heat, turning frequently, until cooked through.

Lemony Spiced Pork Kebabs

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

• 1 lb boneless pork chops

• 1 cup full-fat plain Greek-style yogurt

• 2 garlic cloves, minced

• ¼ red onion, diced

• juice of ½ lemon

• 2 tsp coriander

• 1 Tbsp cumin

• 1 Tbsp ground mustard

• 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

• 1 tsp cayenne pepper

| Preparation | If using wooden skewers, soak them in water for about 30 minutes. Cut pork into cubes and set aside in a large bowl. In another bowl, mix the yogurt, garlic, onion, lemon juice, coriander, cumin, ground mustard, pepper and cayenne until thoroughly blended, adding salt to taste if you’d like. Then stir the yogurt mixture into the pork, being sure to coat the cubes thoroughly. Cover and marinate in the fridge for a few hours or, even better, overnight. Thread pork onto skewers and cook over a glowing coals in your fire pit, or on a grill at medium-high heat, turning frequently, until cooked through.

Tahini Sauce

Yield: about 1 cup

• ¾ cup tahini

water, as needed

• juice of ¼ lemon

• 1 garlic clove, minced

• 2 Tbsp olive oil

• pinch of salt

| Preparation | In a bowl, mix tahini with water, 2 Tbsp at a time, mixing until the tahini is smooth. The tahini will seize up on you – that’s normal! – and you just need to keep stirring and adding more water incrementally until the tahini is smooth. Add in the lemon juice, garlic, olive oil, stirring to combine. If the sauce seizes up again, keep stirring and add water if necessary.

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This content was produced by Brand Ave. Studios in collaboration with the sponsor. The news and editorial departments had no role in its creation or display. For more information about Brand Ave. Studios, contact tgriffin@brandavestudios.com.
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