Portuguese-style kebabs

Please stop me if I’ve told you this before, but I cannot sing. And, I cannot dance. (Unless you consider dancing like a cardboard cut-out/a parent from the 40’s good dancing). This second revelation may or may not have come as a surprise to my dancing teacher, who bravely attempted to teach me modern dancing until I was eighteen.

Despite the fact that I danced for most of my younger years, I am completely inflexible. When I was sixteen my physiotherapist told me his grandfather was more flexible than me. If I drop something in the morning when I’ve just gotten out of bed, I have to leave it for Frank to pick up.

After Frank told me that my inflexibility will only get worse as I get older (to which I responded “can it get any worse??”) I decided to take up yoga at the local gym. Not only does it help with flexibility, but it allows you to calm yourself for the hour you are doing it. But sadly, I am not calm! When I first started the yoga teacher looked at me in horror and pretended I wasn’t there, hoping I would give up and move on. But it has made me more eager to eventually touch my toes without bending my legs (I have never been able to. Ever.) so I’ve signed on to a smaller class at my work. It starts on Tuesday so I’ll let you know if the new teacher weeps at the sight of me!

My homework on this diet is to relax. Hence the added “benefit” of yoga. But the hobby that relaxes me the most is baking, which I haven’t been able to do. So, just to be in the kitchen doing something, I whipped up these diet-friendly chicken kebabs. You can make them as spicy (or not) as you like, and the marinade keeps them deliciously tender. They can be cooked in the oven, but we did them on the barbeque to give them some extra flavour. I hope you enjoy them!

Portuguese-style kebabs – adapted from AWW’s ‘Slow cooking’ recipe book
Makes 12 skewers

12 wooden skewers, soaked for 30 mins in water
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup tomato paste
4 cloves garlic
2 tbsp grated lemon rind
1/3 cup lemon juice
4 fresh small thai chillies (I used 1 big red chilli as I was making it for kids)
1 tbsp smoked paprika
2 tbsp fresh thyme
1 red capsicum
4 chicken breasts, cut into chunks

Blend or process 2 tbsp of the oil, garlic, lemon rind, lemon juice, chillies, paprika and thyme until smooth.

Pour into a large bowl and mix with tomato paste and final tbsp of oil.

Add chicken chunks and toss into marinade. Leave in the fridge for a minimum of two hours, or overnight.

Cut red capsicum into similar sized chunks to chicken, and thread chicken and capsicum onto skewers.

Frank, mid-skewer..

BBQ until cooked, or bake in oven at 180C for 35-40 mins, turning once.
Serve with a salad, and some polenta fries if you can stop everyone from eating them first!

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2 Responses to “Portuguese-style kebabs”


  1. 1 Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella 30/03/2011 at 10:13 pm

    Hehe Loll don’t worry I can’t sing or dance either! And like you baking is my perfect idea of relaxing!

  2. 2 Anna Johnston 01/04/2011 at 5:47 pm

    When I was at a summer camp in the US for a few months many moons ago I was telling my Mom that one of the other international students and I sang a song in front of the entire camp & my mother uttered in horror…… ‘Can you sing?’ which of course was the first indication in my life that maybe I couldn’t, quite a shock it was!!!
    But I can touch my toes & I love to dance (which I know doesn’t actually qualify that I ‘can’ dance!!!!!
    But what the hell…., lets all tuck into these kebabs girl…. at least we both know for sure we love these huh 🙂


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