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August 2012 Cookbook of the Month, Planet Barbecue: Poultry, Fish, Shellfish, Vegetables and Vegetarian Dishes

Please use this thread to report on dishes from the following chapters in Planet Barbecue:
Poultry, pages 351 - 418
Fish, pages 419 - 480
Shellfish, pages 481 - 526
Vegetables and Vegetarian Dishes, pages 527 - 566

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  1. Jordanian Grilled Chicken, Planet Barbecue, page 378.
    I'm hoping that people don't mind that I link to a couple Planet Barbecue recipes I reported on the grilling thread. I always search for others doing the same recipe when I am trying one, so I thought I'd just post a couple links. I won't take the liberty of linking anyone else's posts, just my own.

    1 Reply
    1. re: L.Nightshade

      Jordanian (not Grilled) Chicken, p. 378

      The flavors in this recipe intrigued me, but I made it as a braise rather than grilled. It was a great success, so I'll report on it here, even though I made some major changes!

      I took about 4 lbs of bone-in chicken thighs and skinned them, drizzled them with olive oil, then tossed them with the spice mixture of salt, cumin, coriander, paprika, and pepper, plus a bunch of sliced onions and bay leaves. I gave them a drink of white wine as well, maybe 1 c. I accidentally grabbed the hot paprika instead of the sweet, but it was fine, so I'll do it again. I also added the raisins, cardamom pods (several!), and cinnamon to the chicken, rather than cooking them separately. I let it marinate overnight.

      To cook it, I spread the chicken out in a heavy roasting pan, sprinkled it liberally with sliced almonds, and covered it loosely with a sheet of foil. I baked it at 350 degrees for, hmm, maybe 1 1/2 hours? Something like that. Towards the end I removed the foil to allow a little more browning.

      It was delicious! We were having a group of friends over after a local wine stroll event, so I wanted a main that wouldn't need much fussing. Essentially I was following my Chicken Marbella model but using the Jordanian Chicken flavors. I will totally do it again. But I will also make the grilled version someday too, honest!

    2. Uzbek "Tandoori" Chicken, Planet Barbecue, page 360.
      Another link to my experience posted in the grilling thread:

      1. Saffron Chicken Tikka and Green Herb Chutney, pg 399

        This one got mixed reviews from us. It may have been in part overshadowed by the other grilled recipe I served on the same night (Ground Lamb Kebab with Cumin and Mint pg 328). It was interesting, response was definitely lackluster on the night we made it, but I warmed up significantly to it on repeat sampling.

        So, I did modify the recipe slightly. I used boneless, skinless thighs, but did not cut them up into chunks, just left them whole. These are marinaded in garlic, ginger and lemon juice first for an hour. To this, a mix of yogurt, saffron, S/P, cardamom is added for an additional 3 hours of marinade. You were supposed to also have some whipping cream and mace in the second marinade, but I left those out because I didn't have them (and didn't see the need for the extra dairy).

        I didn't use skewers, since I was using whole boneless thighs. Grilling was left to my husband, who grilled them perfectly on our charcoal grill. I also didn't baste them with butter, in part because it seemed too time consuming, and also because I would rather slather my naan in butter and didn't want to give everyone a heart attack.

        I also made the Green Herb chutney, which was dead easy and very good. Just cilantro, mint, spinach, yogurt, lemon salt and pepper in the food processor. I have made similar chutneys before, but never with spinach. I couldn't really taste the spinach, but I figured it added some extra vitamins to the mix. I served everything with buttered naan (forzen from Trader Joes) and a tomato onion salad.

        The chicken in the end was good, but a little odd to our taste. The cardamom and saffron together made it extremely fragrant and more floral than we liked. When compared with the kofta with which we serevd it, it seemed refined and ladylike in comparison, but just not as delicious. None of my kids would eat it either.

        Interestingly, I ended up eating it many times for lunch in leftover form since it was unpopular to start. I really warmed up to it in that form served with a spinach cumin basmati rice from 660 curries. When not being overshadowed by the Kofta, I was able to appreciate it more and I felt like the floral notes, which seemed so overwhelming at first toned down a bit and were better balanced with the citrus and aromatics.

        In the end, I don't think we'll be repeating this one. Too many great dishes to try, but it was interesting...

        1. Lemongrass & Curry Grilled Chicken Breasts, Planet Barbecue, p. 384

          I'm also linking up my reports from the grilling thread.

          1. Bacon-Grilled Eggplant - Planet Barbecue - p 353


            1. Chicken Brochettes in the Style of Fez - Planet Barbecue, p. 394


              1 Reply
              1. re: MelMM

                Thanks MeImm - I'd love to try this. Curiously, am having some difficulty accessing this month's book site - appreciate the link.

              2. Link to a previously cooked recipe:

                Cumin-Grilled Chicken Breasts with Fiery Bolivian Salsa, Pg. 383

                5 Replies
                1. re: Gio

                  Cumin Grilled Chicken Breasts with Fiery Bolivian Salsa, Page 383.

                  Gio describes the dish well in her linked report above. For the llajua, mariacarmen informed me that the herbs customarily used in Bolivia would be quirquina, or huacataya. One is described as Bolivian cilantro (though not related), the other is described as a tasting like a minty cilantro. So in addition to using cilantro, and a bit of parsley, I also threw in a couple leaves of fresh mint. I used half a habanero when whipping up the sauce, tasted it, and added the other half. Still not fiery. So I added half a serrano, and chunks of jalapeño, red fresno, and yellow chile. That was pretty much our chile inventory, so, while still not "fiery" it would have to do. And it was indeed very tasty.

                  The cumin grilled chicken breasts were a snap. Mr. NS had purchased boneless skinless (which is unusual for him) so that is what we used. They were massaged with the cumin, salt, pepper, and oil, then rested in the fridge for over an hour before being plopped onto the grill.

                  The chicken was fragrant with the cumin, and it melded well with the llajua. We both enjoyed this dish quite a lot.

                  Since I lit upon this recipe, and got some other recipe links from mariacarmen, I did a bit of reading about llajua. There are so many different versions! Her version uses a whole onion, and no garlic, oil, or vinegar. I also found recipes that used roasted tomatoes, which I'd love to try. I think I'm going to be on the lookout for quirquina and huacataya seeds to make a more authentic version!

                  1. re: L.Nightshade

                    It looks gorgeous in the pics! I love how this recipe has sent you on a quest for the real thing!


                    1. re: L.Nightshade

                      it looks beautiful! i may have to try your version one of these days!

                      1. re: L.Nightshade

                        Cumin-Grilled Chicken Breasts with Fiery Bolivian Salsa, p. 383

                        Ran into this recipe while skimming for something to do with chicken breasts, and recalled LN's positive write-up. This recipe couldn't have been easier.

                        The chicken is seasoned with salt, pepper and cumin, then massaged with olive oil, and set aside in the fridge for 30 min to one hour (closer to 30 min, for me). Meanwhile, you get to whip up this very easy salsa in the blender, consisting of chiles, tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, red wine vinegar (or lemon juice, I used vinegar), salt, pepper and cilantro (or parsley, I used cilantro). I love that the recipe calls for "luscious, red ripe tomatoes". For the chiles, I used one jalapeno, and one hot red chile of unknown variety, seeds in. The salsa had a kick to it, but wasn't what I'd call fiery. It was, however, very tasty.

                        I had boneless, skinless chicken breasts that were monster-sized, about 10 oz. each. I grilled them on a mini green egg, with the temp at 550 for 5 minutes per side. Perfect. Even though the seasonings are very simple here, the chicken had a wonderful flavor. And the salsa went with it so well. The combination was just terrific. As easy as this was to pull together, it will definitely be a repeat for me.

                        1. re: MelMM

                          Cumin-Grilled Chicken Breasts w. Bolivian Salsa

                          Unseasonably warm day, chicken breasts in fridge? Time to grill! +1 on this recipe. The chicken, as noted by others, is insanely easy yet extremely flavourful.
                          Loved the fresh flavours of the llajua, and am also intrigued by all of the variations listed above. I tossed in a spoonful of huacatay paste, though I'm not sure if that added much. Perhaps I'll have to hunt down some seeds to try growing the real thing next spring. There was a lot of salsa, probably because I kept adding different chiles in an attempt to obtain that gorgeous yellow hue in LN's photos.....the colour in mine ended up being a dull terra cotta, even though I used yellow pear tomatoes and aji amarillos (from a jar).
                          I'm going to start saving my pennies so that I can buy the frozen rocotos that my local S.A. store started carrying.....they're not cheap, but I'd love to try this with the suggested chiles.
                          Spooned the extra llajua over grilled potatoes and steamed cauliflower, with an avocado salad (from The Book Of Latin American Cooking) on the side. Still have more to use up, but it's irresistable enough that I'm certain it will be gone soon.

                    2. Grilled Swordfish with Garlic Caper Butter, Pg. 438

                      We have swordfish maybe once or twice a year, if that, but Atlantic Harpoon swordfish are in season here in New England now and I thought it would be a good idea to grill some steaks with a simple sauce on the side. (Day-boat harpooners or 'strikers', as they're called, hunt the ocean surface and when a swordfish is spotted near the surface the striker harpoons the big fish by hand. It's an age old traditional way of fishing for these fish without bycatch.)

                      The recipe is quite simple: Marinate the fish in a rub of salt & pepper, olive oil, and lemon juice - covered - for about 15 minutes in the fridge. Prepare the grill for direct heat using wood or wood chips and grill fish 3 - 4 minutes per side. Just as G was going outside to prep the grill we had a fast and furious downpour that lasted much too long to use the Weber, so he used the indoor grill pan. Got it hot, oiled the ridges, and cooked the steaks that way.

                      In the mean time I made the sauce: Melt butter, add garlic and capers, slightly brown the garlic and crisp up the capers. Pour over the swordfish. Nice sauce. The fish was done to a tee. Together they just didn't add up to the delicious flavor we expected. Should have done, everything was fresh and the recipe was followed to the letter. Perhaps it was the lack of the smoky flavor that would have come from the outdoor grill. I dunno. It was not inedible...witness: there's none left. Let's just say we were underwhelmed...

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Gio

                        Bummer. I had flagged this one for us to try. It's a little more involved, but Dorie's Mediterranean Swordfish with Frilly Herb Salad from Around My French Table might be a worth trying before that Atlantic harpooned swordfish is out of season again.

                        1. re: BigSal

                          Grilled Swordfish (Bluefish Fillet) w/ Garlic Caper Butter, pg. 438

                          What can I say? We liked this quite a lot. Mind you I subbed a nice bluefish fillet for the swordfish, and we did cook it over charcoal with the suggested addition of some hardwood chips, so there was plenty of smokiness to our fish.

                          Totally agree w/ Big Sal that this recipe is similar to the Dorie Greenspan version. At the margin I'd say I prefer the Greenspan recipe; but for a simple weeknight meal this version was so quick and easy, served with grilled corn-on-the-cob, and some perfectly fresh butter beans, it was a lovely summer meal.

                      2. Yakitori Lke They Make It in Japan, p. 400

                        I duplicated the tare (dipping sauce) ingredients, but I'm sure our dinner varied significantly from "...like...in Japan" !
                        However, this we appreciated immediately -- the sauce is chicken stock (I just used broth), soy sauce, scallion, ginger, lemon, garlic, white wine, sugar, sesame seed sprinkles. Simmer and stir, it gets thick and so coats the meat well. The author writes that in Japan, a tare (TAH-re) can be *years* old -- dip chicken, dip again, dip dip dip, replenish, but never really start over with a new batch. You can imagine how this becomes a really irreplaceable concentration!
                        The meat (which can be *anything* chicken, white/dark/liver/heart -- even embryonic eggs) gets cut small, skewered, and grilled. Halfway through grilling it's dipped into the tare, then again after grilling.
                        As you can see, I used chicken drumsticks, slashed to accept the sauce. Done under the broiler, not grilled, it did get a bit of the of the "mahogany" glaze effect, and it certainly tastes good! I'd do it again anytime. The more of that sauce layered on, the better.

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: blue room

                          Gosh, that sounds delicious Blueroom, and the photos look it. I'm happy to read that even though the chicken was broiled instead of grilled you liked it. I just added it to my To Do list.

                          1. re: blue room

                            That looks wonderful! And the glaze looks great. I'll put this on my growing list.

                            1. re: blue room

                              Looks delicious, BR. Was planning to make the Cambodian Chicken tonight, but maybe I'll do Yakitori instead. Pretty sure that one would be a winner with my family.

                              1. re: blue room

                                Yakitori, pg 400

                                Blue room inspired me to go with the Yakitori last night and it did not disappoint. Made the tare during the afternoon and then grilled the chicken on the charcoal grill at dinnertime. This was delicious! I used boneless skinless chicken thighs and did not bother with cutting or skewering. I just used the long tongs to dip the whole thigh into the tare sauce midway through grilling and then again at the end. Had my sauce boiling on the grill (my little 3/4 quart saucepan came in very handy) and so served the leftover sauce at the table. My kids went crazy for the tare sauce drizzled on Japanese rice. Also served with a Japanese slaw from Everyday Harumi, baby broccoli and the Tsukune from pg 30. Happy diners all around.

                                Have about half the sauce leftover so will do a repeat yakitori sometime soon.

                              2. Grilled Tomato Habanero Salsa, page 459.

                                The instructions have you place sweet onion, tomatoes, and habaneros directly into the embers. We have a gas grill and just did them on the grate, the other option given. Once they were soft and a bit charred, any really burned bits were removed. They were then blended together with cilantro, orange juice, and lime juice (in place of sour orange juice) and salt. I ended up adding a touch more lime juice, as our taste test found it a bit too orangey. This salsa had a wonderful, deep, smoky taste, in addition to the heat. We usually use a combination of peppers instead of a single one, for a little more dimension. Mr. NS, especially, missed that in this salsa. When we make it again we will combine the habaneros with other peppers.

                                The other day we had a habanero that had very little heat. The two we used for this were very hot, and two was enough (the recipe calls for 2 - 8!). The recipe makes about 2 cups. We'll use some of it on tacos tonight, but because of the heat, we won't go through it fast enough. Our neighbor is getting a jar of it today.

                                I used this salsa with the Mayan Pork Chops, reported on here:

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: L.Nightshade

                                  And the photo. I know it looks like any old salsa, but it's really not.

                                  1. re: L.Nightshade

                                    Would you say those pork chops could be served on their own, no sauce / salsa ?
                                    The cabbage + citrusy onion etc. looks to be enough. ?

                                    1. re: blue room

                                      I greatly enjoyed the spicy smoky taste of the llajua, but I think another salsa would work also. And those chops would have been good with just the citrusy onions too.

                                  2. Mexican Grilled Fish Tacos (Tacos de Pescado), page 458.

                                    Because I had leftover tomato habanero salsa, and these were essentially on the same page, I made them tonight. These were pretty straightforward. We used salmon for the fish (as it is still coming out of our ears around here), and added in some shrimp. The fish sits for a bit in orange and lime juice (or naraja agria, if you have it), and is then grilled with bastings of cilantro garlic butter. I had some lovely European butter, so this stuff was delicious. When ready, the fish is stuffed into tortillas in the usual fashion, with cabbage, sour cream, guacamole, and salsa. I added a few radish slices, and used the grilled tomato habanero salsa (reviewed here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8612...). I also made the Mexican guacamole on page 131.

                                    I enjoyed trying something different, and they were really very, very good, but, truth be told, we both prefer my own fish tacos.

                                    5 Replies
                                    1. re: L.Nightshade

                                      Hola Nightshade... that looks like a Fiesta on a plate.

                                      1. re: L.Nightshade

                                        Beautiful pictures. How do you make your fish tacos?

                                        1. re: L.Nightshade

                                          Looks fantastic. +1 on how you make your own tacos?

                                          1. re: LulusMom

                                            OK, my tacos. I make a paste of about equal parts of cumin and chipotles in adobo (from the can, mashing up the chipotles), and add a little salt. Rub that on the fish or shrimp (I love them with shrimp, and also use red snapper a lot, but you can use anything), and let it absorb for a while. The fish is then cooked either on a grill, or in a very lightly oiled frying pan. The rub gives it a spicy flavor and a nice color. I use the usual accoutrements, cabbage, avocado, sometimes tomato or red onion, sometimes extra cilantro. I make a sauce of blended sour cream, cilantro, and lime juice (about 2:1 sour cream and cilantro, then lime juice to taste). I also make a salsa that is basically pico de gallo except that I add a fruit: mango, pineapple, or green apple, whatever looks good. And that is all there is to it, but Mr. NS thinks they are the best ever.

                                            And thanks all, for your kind compliments!

                                        2. Iceberg (Game Hens) with Moroccan Spices, pg 413

                                          We made this last night with a whole chicken instead of 4 game hens and were completely humbled by the difficulty of grilling a whole spatchcocked chicken over direct heat. Counting on the quality of the free range chicken that we used that no one will get Salmonella...

                                          The good news is that this was delicious. I really liked the well-cooked chicken that we were able to salvage from our bird. The bad news is, there was much scorched skin, as well as bloody meat and my husband was so sweaty and smokey after grilling this that a shower was required before dinner.

                                          Basically, a spatchcocked chicken(given as an acceptable sub for the game hens) was marinaded for 24 hours in a mix of raw onion, sweet paprika, cumin, coriander, salt, pepper, lemon juice and oil pureed by the immersion blender. My coriander was dug out from the back of the pantry and losing its potency and when I tasted the marinade I thought it needed a little something, so I added some fresh cilantro as well. SR gives directions for both direct and indirect grilling, but states the original is grilled over direct heat. We have never grilled a whole spatchcocked chicken before, but I thought "hey, how hard can it be?" Pretty darn hard. I put my husband in charge of it with the directions in the book and he struggled valiantly, but in the end, he turned to indirect grilling the breasts after the leg quarters were pretty scorched (but bloddy by the bone).

                                          Despite the trials of cooking the thing, the meat really was delicious and well-seasoned. Everyone loved it! My husband suggested next time just get thighs and wings and that is what we will do. My picture is lackluster, but the final presentation wasn't pretty.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: greeneggsnham

                                            "I thought "hey, how hard can it be?" Pretty darn hard."

                                            This whole thread so far is inspiring, but mostly making me hungry. And Mr. blue room too would go for a more practical approach -- I think the word "spatchcock" makes him nervous heehee.

                                            1. re: blue room

                                              Yeah, I thought spatchcocking the bird would be the hardest part, but not so... We all like dark meat anyway, so I see no advantage to struggling with the whole bird.

                                          2. Cambodian Grilled Chicken (Mann Oeng K'tem Sor, Marech) page 371.

                                            I essentially chose this recipe because I had everything in the house. A spatchcocked chicken is marinated in garlic, sugar, salt, soy sauce, and fish sauce. The instructions say to slash the meat to the bone, but Mr. NS (in-house master of spatchcockery) chose not to do that. I actually think it might have helped, both for marinade absorption, and for making sure the meat was done, as the sugar in the marinade tends to make the skin burn before the meat is fully cooked. Even the photo in the book has some burnt black skin! In the photos below, you can see that one of the legs escaped its skin binding during grilling. During the last stage of grilling, the chicken is basted with oil that has been heated with garlic and annatto seeds. At table, the chicken is dipped in lime juice with salt, pepper, and sugar. On the side, I made a stir fry of all the remaining CSA vegetables, with some ginger, garlic, and ground peanuts.

                                            A very nice dish. I am not a chicken skin eater, but I have to admit, this skin was crispy and flavorful, and the meat was moist and tender.

                                            4 Replies
                                            1. re: L.Nightshade

                                              Cambodian Grilled Chicken, page 371

                                              I made this last night using chicken thighs and wings rather than the whole spatchcocked bird. This was a big hit! LN described the process, so I won't reiterate. This was my first time using annatto seeds (for the basting oil) and I did like the earthy flavor it imparted. I thought the layers of flavor (garlicky soy marinade, garlicky annatto oil, smokiness from the grill and then fresh lime dipping sauce) made for an especially delicious and succulent chicken. My husband has already requested a repeat.

                                              And oh yeah, our skin had burnt parts as well!

                                              1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                Cambodian Grilled Chicken (Mann Oeng K'tem Sor, Marech), page 371

                                                Like LN above, I chose this recipe for tonight's dinner based on what I had in the kitchen pantry, plus it sounded good. Our chicken had a full four hour spa with the marinade, complete with slashes. We used a grill basket which certainly made turning the bird easy. Next time, I might do a few more slashes since we all loved the flavor of the meat anywhere that was near one of them. Though he says the dipping sauce is a bit optional, this last moment with lime juice was wonderful. I would never make this without it.

                                                Served with the first peas of the season! And a salad with local lettuce, radish, and cucumbers. [So happy to see early Summer vegetables at the local farm today.]

                                                We were too hungry to take a picture. Maybe next time.

                                                1. re: smtucker

                                                  Somehow never really noticed any of the reviews of this chicken but it sounds totally to our tastes. Can someone verify that this is the same recipe (sometimes people make slight changes when they publish online): http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                              2. Grilled Cheese Kabobs p. 563

                                                Well this was fun and delicious but I'll never get Mr. blue room to feel that a meatless dish counts as dinner. I've read the same from others here, it's frustrating!

                                                But here's the fun delicious meatless dish anyhow:

                                                I made my own paneer cheese (which is almost literally as easy as pouring milk into a pan) and then just threaded squares of the cheese with green and red bell pepper, red onion, and tomato. These kabobs (which I broiled) are brushed with a sauce made of butter, cilantro, garlic, ginger, turmeric, and black pepper.

                                                I tried to turn and brush the 'bobs on all sides during cooking, wishing more of the flavoring could stay on the food! This kind of cheese doesn't melt -- it holds it shape. Queso blanco or mozzerella, haloumi are also recipe chioces. Sesame seed sprinkles to finish.

                                                As the author says, include these goodies at any gathering with vegetarians in attendance!

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: blue room

                                                  Thank you for this review, BR! I have Queso Blanco in the fridge without any ideas what to do with it - must try these kabobs.

                                                2. Chicken Liver Yakitori with a Balsamic-Soy Glaze, page 402.
                                                  Dish number 200!

                                                  Because we're always trying to remember "what was that dish with the …?" I started keeping a list of all the recipes I've cooked for the COTM. This one is number 200! That seems amazing to me. I know many people have been cooking longer and more prolifically than I have, but I'm so happy that I've prepared 200 dishes that I might never have tried, were it not for for the COTM.

                                                  Anyway, back to the dish at hand…
                                                  Chicken livers are trimmed and placed on skewers. I didn't have the wide skewers specified, so I used two for each row of livers. While they are grilling they are sprayed (yes, with a spray bottle) with a 50:50 mixture of soy sauce and balsamic vinegar. When finished they are dusted with very coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. What could be easier?

                                                  This was SO delicious! Of course, you have to like chicken livers to begin with, but the soy-balsamic really took them to a new level. It's obviously very simple, so each ingredient is important. We get great organic livers, and I had some balsamic I brought back from Italy. The amounts for the soy sauce and the balsamic were more than we could possibly have used, even spraying constantly. But I'll be happy to use what was left on something else. Or maybe do livers again! (Full disclosure, Mr. NS wasn't quite as ecstatic about this dish as I was, although he liked it just fine.)

                                                  2 Replies
                                                  1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                    Congrats, fireworks, and balloons for your 200th dish. And it looks like you've just been here since 2011, right? You do practice what you post!

                                                    Oh I do like chicken livers (turkey even better). Of course I usually have one at a time from a chicken -- how wonderful to have a whole row of them!

                                                    1. re: blue room

                                                      Thanks for your celebratory post, blue room. And yes, I did join some time in 2011, although I don't know how you can tell that!

                                                  2. Belgian Pork Rolls with Chutney, Mint, and Bacon p. 258

                                                    This calls for pork tenderloin slices, pounded, but I used pork chops, pounded thin. Easily put together! Spread some mango chutney (I used Major Grey's) and a mint leaf on each meat 'flat', then roll up, wrap in bacon, and grill. (I broiled.) I always par-cook bacon for wrapping or topping other meats, I do it in the microwave.

                                                    Couldn't be nicer little cigars!

                                                    Oh dear, this is in the wrong thread -- should be in pork -- I'll put a link over there.

                                                    3 Replies
                                                    1. re: blue room

                                                      Oh goody. What's better than pork on pork. I have my interchange cap on: How would boneless lamb work, with turkey bacon? (although the turkey bacon is probably as "bad" because of the sky high sodium count)

                                                      1. re: Gio

                                                        Gio, I can't think how you could go wrong with lamb, mint, chutney, and bacon!

                                                        1. re: blue room

                                                          Okey Dokey blue room... Putting this on my list. I really haven't done much from this cookbook yet. We're getting so much stuff from our CSA 1/2 share I can't keep up with it. OTOH, found out yesterday my cholesterol level is perfect...

                                                    2. Pancetta [country bacon] Orange Chicken Kebabs p. 395

                                                      I think everyone would like these! Author explains that beef is a more usual meal than chicken in Buenos Aires, and orange with rum isn’t particularly Argentinian, either.
                                                      Even so, he found these there and liked them well enough for the book.

                                                      Thin orange slices are soaked in rum & orange juice for a time, then the liquid is reduced, and butter, salt and pepper added. This is both a baste and a table sauce for the kebabs.

                                                      I par-cooked the bacon in the microwave, then wrapped half-slices of it around seasoned (S&P) chicken pieces before basting and broiling. I could taste the OJ-rum sauce as well as bacon and chicken, delightful bites. The cooked orange slices are practically candy, and make a pretty garnish.
                                                      Yes, I’d make these again.

                                                      1. Harissa, Simple Moroccan Hot Sauce [page 414]

                                                        This is the first Harissa recipe I have seen that uses peppers I have! 1/4 cup of sweet or hot paprika and 1-3 tsp red pepper flakes are mixed with some boiling water. This sits for 5 minutes and then it is placed into a food processor with salt, ground coriander, cumin, garlic, and peeled, seeded and diced tomatoes. Process until smooth and then add some oil and a bit of water until it reaches a sauce-like consistency.

                                                        I used a combination of Penzey sweet paprika and Penzey Half-Sharp. For the pepper flakes, I used 2 tsp.

                                                        This stuff packs a punch but it is SO delicious. Served with Koftas, page 328.

                                                        1. Venetian Shrimp Grilled with Bread Crumbs and Sage p.492

                                                          Finally, after weeks of perusing the recipes held within this book and never being able to make a decision because everything looked so intriguing, I took the plunge and just flipped to a random page. This recipe was staring back at me, and what an easy and excellent introduction to Planet barbecue it turned out to be!

                                                          Jumbo shrimp, preferably head-on, are skewered between whole sage leaves. Since the head on shrimp available here is often of questionable quality, I elected to use headless frozen prawns, smaller than jumbo though, so I reduced the cooking time accordingly.

                                                          The shrimp is brushed with olive oil, seasoned with s+p, dredged in bread crumbs, and grilled to done. Super easy! I really should grill shrimp more often, as this was fantastically simple. The bread crumbs only lightly clung to the prawns, but they offered up a nice textural contrast to the crispy, sweet seafood. The crumbs browned nicely, and the sage leaves were lightly burning around the edges, and I could detect the flavour of the herb where it had touched the shrimp. Very nice.

                                                          A salsa verde consisting of parsley, olive oil, garlic, and salt is made to serve with the skewers, along with lemon wedges. The sauce was fine, but it made a rather large amount, and I preferred just the lemon. The remaining salsa will easily be converted to a chimichurri, so I'm not too concerned.

                                                          All in all, a nice, light summer meal, easy enough that I would repeat it. Served with grape tomato salad on p. 151 and balsamic pesto green beans from The Splendid Table.

                                                          3 Replies
                                                          1. re: Allegra_K

                                                            Nice dinner! I don't quite get the bread crumbs, but it wouldn't keep me from trying this.

                                                            1. re: Allegra_K

                                                              Absolutely beautiful, summery images! They have made me hungry!

                                                              1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                Venetian Shrimp Grilled with Bread Crumbs and Sage p.492

                                                                Quick and easy. The breadcrumbs (I used panko) cling surprisingly well to the shrimp, yet don't burn, and give quite a nice effect. I wasn't crazy about the sage leaves, though, as charming as that sounded. Most of the time they were too subtle, but in a couple of cases they were too strong. I might try bay leaves or lemon leaves next time. (Makrut lime? That might be a bit much, or maybe it would be great.) The other easy thing would be to mix some seasoning with the breadcrumbs. which could lead anywhere!

                                                                I skipped the salsa verde and just served lemon wedges, though I ate my shrimp without that even.

                                                              2. Laotion Rice "Pops" with Dipping Sauce p. 565

                                                                What a fun concept, grilled rice on a stick!

                                                                This is such a simple recipe, I feel silly reporting on it. I'll make it quick.
                                                                Room temperature cooked sticky rice is formed into flat oblongs and pierced with skewer. Sticky rice is much more difficult to handle when cool, so I would recommend forming the patties while still warm. I also found that shaping them around the skewers was easier than poking the stick through. The rice is chilled to harden. When ready to grill, the 'pops' are dipped into beaten egg, and grilled over high heat to a golden brown.

                                                                I had forgotten how much I disliked the taste of browned egg.....it somehow reminds me of slightly off fish. So unfortunately, these rice sticks had no chance. Nobody really ate them much. Even the dipping sauce was meh. I used the 'sweet chile sauce' version, which was fine but forgettable.

                                                                I really love the idea of grilled rice, and grilled sticky rice sounds even better! Just next time, I'll skip the egg. It'll make a world of difference.

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                  Allegra I'm so sorry this dish disappointed because it looks sensational! I'm imagining this would be great dipped in a spicy peanut sauce or a vinegar based Asian sauce as well. I love the idea and didn't notice the recipe in the book. I'll have to give it a try. I bought a Zoji rice cooker and often have extra rice leftover.

                                                                2. Coconut-Grilled Corn p.529

                                                                  This charred delight was one of the highlights of my Southeast Asian-based grilled dinner. It was so simple, too, that it will most likely be repeated every time grilled sate is on the menu.

                                                                  Coconut milk is simmered with palm sugar (I used the strongly flavoured irresistible Indonesian gula jawa) and a pandanus leaf until the sugar is dissolved and the vanilla-tinged fragrance of the leaf wafts through the air. The mixture is cooled and basted over the corn several times as it is grilling. The end.

                                                                  I don't know what it is about this corn, but it was killer! I had doubts about the flavours getting absorbed by the thick kernals, but the coconut juices trickle between each niblet, making our already-sweet North American corn even more delectable. The sugars lightly caramelize the exterior.......oh, I'm drooling a little bit thinking about this corn! It was stellar, and for something so easy, it's a definite do-again. Perhaps next week. 'Cause, you know, the coconut milk-basted corn coupled with the coconut milk-marinated sates, with the sticky rice pops and dipping sauce, combined with the peanut sauce drenched gado-gado wasn't enough calories for one lifetime.

                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                  1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                    I can't imagine anything better than butter-drenched corn on the cob, so if what you say about this stuff is true I will dance a corn dance! I suppose some of the ingredients are hard to find --
                                                                    but I'll try.

                                                                    1. re: blue room

                                                                      The pandanus leaf is optional! Bay leaves are listed as a substitute.....brown sugar can be used in place of the palm variety.

                                                                    2. re: Allegra_K

                                                                      Wow! You are knocking my socks off. This sounds wonderful. Did you get your ingredients at an Asian store? (I'll be really impressed if you say you had them all on hand!)
                                                                      Another fantastic photo.

                                                                        1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                          Thanks for the kind words, LN and ncw! That brightened my day!
                                                                          As for the ingredients, they are all shelf-stable, minus the pandanus leaves, of which I have a batch in the freezer for emergencies such as this, hehe. I've amassed quite a collection over the years. As in, I need a new kitchen to house all the ingredients from dabbling in various international cuisines. It's really becoming a problem!

                                                                      1. Tuscan-Style Chicken Under a Brick, pg. 377

                                                                        Cutting to the chase, this wasn't exactly a dud, but so far, it was probably my least favorite dish from this book. My hunch is this might be much better made with poussins or game hens rather than whole chicken (Raichlen suggests all of them). But I had a 3lb chicken and that's what I used.

                                                                        It is an easy enough prep, spatchcock a chicken, which with newly sharpened kitchen shears--hooray!-- was much easier to do than it used to be. Apply a salt/herb rub; salt, sage, rosemary, garlic, and black pepper. Grill, either direct or indirect heat, with a weight on top. Reading the salutary reports on direct heat grilling above, I went with the indirect method.

                                                                        I dunno, maybe it was me, but I can't see what the weighting does for this chicken. And my skin stuck to the foil! Boy was I miffed. And it was too salty for me. And as you can see below it didn't look like much either. I will admit though the leftovers made an excellent chicken sandwich.

                                                                        1. Grilled Chicken w/ Yogurt, Hot pepper, and Garlic, pg. 393

                                                                          Could swear someone already wrote this one up, but I can't find a report, so appologies if I'm duplicating.

                                                                          I made a riff on this, following the marinade recipe exactly, but applying it to whole chicken thighs rather than chicken kabobs. And it worked!

                                                                          The marinade is the thing here, it was just plain delicious--tasting it before I applied it to the chicken I was hard pressed to stop myself from eating it with a spoon. Really I think it would make a great dip. Anyway, I made a half recipe which was plenty and then some for my three chicken thighs. They marinated for a couple of hours, and I grilled them using indirect heat for about 40 minutes.

                                                                          4 Replies
                                                                            1. re: qianning

                                                                              The marinade ingredients in this chicken recipe are very similar to those for the lamb kebabs I made from the book last night (different proportions) and I WAS eating that with a spoon before I poured it over the lamb cubes. :) Glad to see your report and will make this chicken, which I might have otherwise overlooked,

                                                                              1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                I was thinking along the same lines when reading your lamb kebab report. I'm still finding lots to love in this book.

                                                                                1. re: qianning

                                                                                  I am coming to this party very late in the month but I see lots I would like to make.

                                                                            2. Shrimp on the Barbie #2, page 490.

                                                                              I'm not sure what makes these Australian, maybe the shrimp? Anyway, they were easy, quick, and delicious. Shrimp get salted and peppered, wrapped with a basil leaf, then a strip of prosciutto. The directions call for toothpicking each one, I just put them on bamboo skewers instead. They are brushed with oil and go on the grill for a few minutes each side. Once they are done, a bit of Pernod is flambéed, and poured over the shrimp. (Lovely to see, but invisible in the evening daylight when I tried to photograph it.) This was a delightful combination of flavors. The Pernod was not overwhelming at all, it just added a little complexity. The only change I would make, would be to hold the salt that goes onto the shrimp beforehand, as the prosciutto supplied sufficient saltiness.

                                                                              I served this with oven roasted tomatoes and Batali's corn with mint, parmesan, and red pepper flakes. Before and after pics below.

                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                              1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                                                Shrimp on the Barbie, p. 490

                                                                                It took me until nearly the end of the month to try a few of these recipes, but the of the three so far (all easy and delicious), this was surely the easiest. We often grill prosciutto-wrapped shrimp and then glaze it with an orange syrup, but it had never occurred to me to wrap the shrimp in basil first. Loved it, and as LN has said, the Pernod did not overwhelm but just added another subtle layer of flavor. I'd forgotten to s & p the shrimp before grilling so we added it to taste at the table. This was part of an odd meal, just before Isaac stole our power, so eaten with several must-gos from the fridge that didn't necessarily complement. But we will definitely have these again.

                                                                                1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                  This recipe was on my wish list to make, but I never made it to the liquor store for the pernod. After reading your reports, I'm more anxious than ever to make it.

                                                                                  1. re: MelMM

                                                                                    Do you have any licorice-y or anise flavored liquor? I don't recall how much a bottle of Pernod costs--one of those things that's been in the liquor cabinet a long time and rarely gets used--but unless it's pretty inexpensive, I'm not sure it's worth buying a whole bottle for this recipe. Did add a nice note though.

                                                                                    1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                      Nope, no anise flavored liquors in my otherwise pretty well-stocked liquor cabinet.

                                                                              2. I'm glad to see these (both easy and worth-doing) recipes still popping up from this book.

                                                                                1. Grilled Corn Around the World, pg 531; India version

                                                                                  Grill husked corn, douse with lime juice and sprinkle w/ cayenne. Very nice, and it went quite well with the Lucknowi lamb chops.

                                                                                  1. page 368
                                                                                    grilled chicken with yellow chiles androasted garlic

                                                                                    i used bonless chicken thighs-
                                                                                    i was able to find aji amarillo and achiote at local presidente supermarket
                                                                                    i adjusted the cumin seeds and eliminated the cilantro-

                                                                                    i will be having the dish this evening-

                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                    1. re: jpr54_1

                                                                                      It was delicious-
                                                                                      the amarillo and achiote made the chicken special

                                                                                    2. Paella "Primavera" on the Grill p.557

                                                                                      This tasty vegetarian version of various grilled veggies mixed with the classic saffron-scented rice made for a pretty great lunch. It was a lovely lazy afternoon for grilling, and if it wasn't for being bombarded by wasps the entire time, the cooking process would have been a leisurely and enjoyable event as well.
                                                                                      Since my charcoal grill is rather small and it was too windy to light a fire in the pit, I did the whole process on the gas bbq, using the optional soaked wood chips to pretend like I was doing the real thing.
                                                                                      With the paella pan on the grill, onions and red peppers are fried; garlic, tomatoes, and parsley are added along with rice, wine, saffron, garbanzo beans, and vegetable stock. While rice is cooking, seasoned veggies such as whole garlic cloves, sweet onion, cherry tomatoes, mini peppers(I used 2 coloured bells instead and tore it to shreds later) and yellow + green zummer squash are rubbed with herbs and olive oil and are grilled on whatever open available space there is. The zucchini is the only item that isn't called for being skewered, and I kept losing those little buggers through the grill grate. Will skewer all vegetables next time.
                                                                                      During the last 5 minutes of cooking, the grilled veggies are scattered over the rice mixture, and the remaining herbs( I used the suggested combo of oregano, rosemary, basil, and thyme; added some tarragon for good measure) used to season the vegetables are sprinkled on as well.
                                                                                      At this point in time, my rice wasn't fully cooked in some spots, so I gently turned some of the rice over (leaving the bottom alone so I could get a soccarat going) and sprinkled a bit more stock over. A few minutes later, it still wasn't quite done, so I covered with foil and turned off the heat and let it sit for 20 minutes or so. I hear that paella is tastier after a leisurely rest anyways. It was perfect after that.
                                                                                      There are a few things I would do differently, namely adding a bit of pimenton for those smokey undertones one achieves by using chorizo, and perhaps doubling the garbanzos, if only to make this a more well-rounded meatless meal. If I wasn't concerned about keeping it vegetarian, I would probably grill some shrimp alongside the vegetables and then toss them into the rice to serve. It really called out for some form of seafood. That being said, the rice itself was delicious, and the resulting crusty soccarat was the highly prized jewel of the meal. In my husband's words, there were too many vegetables and not enough rice, and I may have to agree. I might scale down on the vegetables somewhat (unusual for me to say!) for next time. I do like the idea of cooking paella outdoors and will continue to do so.

                                                                                      (This was a gorgeous, colourful meal, and I wish I had photos, but alas, dropped my new camera down the stairs the other day. Sigh.)

                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                          Made this again the other day, using Thomas Keller's incredible vegetable stock as the base, and it wanted for nothing. Used japanese rice and it worked like a charm. I forgot to re-read the notes from last time and so had an absolute mound of grilled veggies. I opted to only scatter about half of them onto the paella and cut them into more fork-friendly pieces this time. Didn't add chickpeas, didn't miss 'em. Well received by both the meat eaters and vegetarians.

                                                                                        2. Grilled Shrimp with Fiery Lemongrass Sambal p.493

                                                                                          This dish seems promising enough. What's not to like about lime-marinated shrimp on the barbecue, lavishly coated with a fragrant and exotic paste of fire-breathing proportions? Reading the ingredient list for the sambal had me salivating, and I had many of the 'real' ingredients in my cupboard, so this was an easy decision for dinner.

                                                                                          For the sambal, a paste is made in a food processor with lemongrass, thai chillies, shallots, garlic, ginger. Other ingredients listed were substitutions for more difficult-to-find fare, but since I obsessively collect items for the cuisine du jour, my SE-Asian pantry is well-stocked. Raichlen suggests that one can replace with the real thing, if desired, so that's what I did. Daun salam (or bay leaves), galangal (ginger), candlenuts (macadamia), palm sugar (brown), and turmeric are all tossed together and pulsed to a paste with the other items. The paste is then mixed with water and oil and fried until the water evaporates and the paste turns golden brown. Spoon on top of the grilled shrimp at will.

                                                                                          This wasn't terrible, but it really was nothing special. For some reason, despite being overwhelmed with intensely flavourful ingredients, the sambal itself lacked flavour. It seemed to be missing something, that 'pop' that makes a good dish sing. It was spicy, yes, but the flavours were muddled, cancelling each other out. I had used a mortar and pestle to make the paste because I love that rhythmic pounding of the ingredients and the resulting fragrance that wafts up from the bowl. Because the recipe didn't work out, in retrospect it seems like it was more of a waste of time and a punishment than anything. I really can't put my finger on what would save the sambal. More lemongrass, perhaps. Something tart, maybe? Either way, I don't care enough to try again.

                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                            Interesting--and too bad-- b/c that all sounds like it would be delicious.
                                                                                            Sorry you weren't rewarded for all that effort; I do know how that feels. If it's any consolation, your description of said effort wafted right from my computerkey, making me hungry.

                                                                                            1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                              Yes, that's a good consolation. I'll take it. Thanks!

                                                                                          2. Grilled Tofu with Chile Peanut Sauce p.561

                                                                                            Despite many attempts, tofu still isn't on my list of desert island items, but with recipes like this one, that may well be changing. Tasty 'steaks' of pressed tofu are grilled and slathered with a thick, nutty sauce that hits all the taste sensations in the right places. What's not to like?

                                                                                            Blocks of firm tofu are cut into thick rectangles and weighted to extract excess liquid and firm them up a bit. I cut the bean curd to much smaller proportions so that the flavour of the tofu was less pronounced and it had more opportunity to soak up other tastes.

                                                                                            Meanwhile, for the dipping sauce, shallots, ginger, garlic, cilantro, and shrimp paste are fried to lightly brown. Shrimp paste, may I add, is not a welcome item in my home. I neglected to mention to my family that I would be frying it up, and had to endure some frantic shouting, breath-holding, whinging, and other dramatic antics before they exited the building (not before opening all the windows, of course). Since then, there's been a 'discussion', and we've decided that I will do all activities involving said vile substance in the backyard only. Sigh.

                                                                                            Back to the sauce. Chile paste and palm sugar go into the mix and cook until dissolved. I used gula jawa, mostly so that I had an excuse to snack on the thin shavings...love that stuff. Peanuts, sesame seeds, hoisin sauce and water are then stirred in and the whole thing is simmered to a thick, robust glaze.Some sauce is brushed on the tofu slices before grilling, the remainder put aside for spooning over top of the tofu.

                                                                                            To serve, arrange the grilled, sauced tofu on a platter with a pile of bean sprouts, sticks of pineapple and julienned cucumber. The tofu is eaten along with the cool fruit/vegetables for a marvelous textural contrast.

                                                                                            My sauce was much, much darker than was shown in the photo in the book; no matter, it was great. It had a wonderful smokey flavour to it from the indonesian palm sugar. Some may wish to reduce the amount of sweetness, but as it was, we loved it. I was pleasantly surprised by the combination of the tofu with the crisp veggies; definitely will mix those together again. This was a very different and fantastic way to enjoy tofu.

                                                                                            6 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                              What a great review. Your account of the reaction to frying the shrimp paste is hilarious!

                                                                                              1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                                Wonderful to know that this book, of which I am a big fan, can deliver on tofu as well as meat. I'll put this on my list to try. Thanks for the entertaining review!

                                                                                                1. re: MelMM

                                                                                                  I'm thoroughly enjoying this book. When I fist picked it up, I was a little overwhelmed with the vast selection of recipes (well, that coupled with the busy layout of a workman publishing cookbook), but I dove right in and have been very happy with the results. This will become my go-to summer grilling book.

                                                                                                2. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                                  Enjoyed this post!
                                                                                                  Did the same people who objected to the paste frying like the finished dish?

                                                                                                  1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                                    Laughing at the shrimp paste story. The first time I opened a container of that stuff, I was in for quite the shock. But it sure adds flavor.

                                                                                                    I've never cooked anything with tofu except hot-and-sour soup once. But I am more and more convinced that I should give it a try.

                                                                                                    1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                      Thanks, everyone! I aim to please, hehe.

                                                                                                      My family does enjoy dishes that contain shrimp paste....it really adds a wonderful savory note. It's just the journey to the finished product that's the problem. Not that I really blame them. I had a similar reaction upon cooking with fish sauce for the first time. Couldn't understand why people would willingly put it in their food....I believe my first fish sauce dish actually went into the garbage. Haha, now I can't get enough of it!

                                                                                                  2. Lemongrass Rotisserie Chicken (lechon manok) p.353

                                                                                                    Made this recipe a while back, so forgive some memory lapses, but this tale needs to be told.

                                                                                                    This is a classic Filipino street-food style take on grilled whole chicken with a crisp, delicate skin and succulent interior, where the chicken is brined in a salty and tangy mixture of tropical flavours.
                                                                                                    For the marinade, the chicken is drenched in a blend of pineapple juice with fish sauce, rice wine, oil, and calamansi juice. I could only find the frozen calamansi limes, and though the recipe calls for a mere 2T, I went through over a dozen of those little spheres to get the desired amount. Also making an appearance in the poultrys' bath water is onion, garlic, star anise and pepper. A lengthy soaking is required, 6-24 hours, to imbue the chicken with the flavours.
                                                                                                    For whatever reason, I couldn't cook my chicken that same day or the next, so it sat there languishing in the juice for at least a couple of days before I could get to it. Once the bird is removed from the salty waters, the cavity is filled with an aromatic selection including lemongrass, ginger, and leek or scallions, and bound to close. The ole' stuff n'truss method.

                                                                                                    For those who don't have a rotisserie(like me), Reichlan kindly offers up directions for cooking using the indirect heat method. He instructs the user to place a drip pan underneath the grate, and the bird above the pan, as is expected, and to cover and grill for about an hour. I did so and went inside to do some prep for a side dish.
                                                                                                    Not ten minutes later, I went outside to check on my dinner, and knew immediately that something was amiss by the thick plumes of black smoke that were billowing from the barbecue. Horrified, I cautiously opened the lid to find my chicken completely engulfed in flames. The drip pan had caught fire, and then the skin on the bird itself turned into a fiery mass. I had to push the bird out of the way of the drip-pan with a long pole, and really could do nothing but stand there, gawking, until the flames subsided. The blackened lump staring back at me was NOT a pleasant sight. Did I mention that company was coming?
                                                                                                    More than a little dejected, I thought I could try to salvage the whole mess by roasting the rest in the oven. There was certainly enough grill flavour in the meat at that point! The entire skin was a blackened and charred disaster, but I didn't remove the dark layer at that point as I didn't want the meat to dry out. Once it had cooked through, I scraped/peeled off the skin (and some of the meat) and hoped for the best. It certainly wasn't company worthy (as you may have guessed, I made something else for my guests), but what meat I did have was intensely flavoured and moist, much like a brined roast bird. I really wish that I could report on how wonderful and crackly the skin was, but I'll brush up on my grilling technique and report back for next time.

                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                                      FWIW, I find grilling chicken--especially a whole one--to be incredibly difficult.
                                                                                                      I am impressed that you had a back-up; I'd never have been that organized.

                                                                                                      1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                        Well, that soothes my crumpled ego a little bit, thanks. I still have much to learn about the grill and clearly a whole bird was beyond my level of expertise. Oh well, at least I got a good story out of the deal! Chalk it up to a learning experience.

                                                                                                    2. Turkey Shawarma pg.410

                                                                                                      The best shawarmas are the ones so filled with crispy-edged flavourful meat and other goodies that it cannot be contained within the pita bread and thus spills out the open end, juices and toppings dripping onto plates, chins, and white shirts. As my stained and splattered top can attest to, this was one amazing sandwich.

                                                                                                      Boneless turkey breast is sliced on the diagonal into thin 4-5" pieces, and rubbed with a marinade of turmeric, black & white pepper, coriander, cumin, and hot paprika, doused with olive oil, and set in the fridge for 1-4 hours. A sliced onion also receives this treatment and is layered with the turkey. The meat is grilled over high, then stacked on a cutting board and thinly sliced crosswise, ensuring each piece has the optimum amount of crunch.
                                                                                                      Serve smothered with a tahini sauce and Tel Aviv Tomato Relish (tom, red onion, hot green pepper, parsley, o.oil, lemon). It has unanimously been decided in our household that no shawarma is complete without pickled turnips and hot sauce, both of which were generously stuffed into the pitas, with some added cukes, lettuce, and radish for good measure.
                                                                                                      I used a roast about half the size called for, reducing all accordingly, and we got 8 sandwiches out of it. The yellowed grilled onions were fabulous and I wouldn't hesitate to double them up.

                                                                                                      Mr. Allegro in particular went crazy for this dish and called it 'outstanding', an adjective he has never used before to describe a meal, so that alone is grounds for a repeat. In fact we all loved this and I cannot wait to have it again!

                                                                                                      6 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                                        This sounds "outstanding" as mr Allegro said! I have a giant boneless turkey breast in the freezer, this might just be a nice, creative way to use it. Thanks for your enticing and enthusiastic review. Your sandwich looks great!

                                                                                                        1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                                          That looks and "sounds" fantastic. I'm going to flag it to try soon. Thanks for the review!

                                                                                                          1. re: MelMM

                                                                                                            Thanks Mel & Breadcrumbs. I am really loving this book and all the winners it keeps pumping out. With grilling season on the horizon I've been flipping through the pages lately and still have a huge list of items I'd like to try and repeats I need to make again. This is one of my favourite cookbook purchases of 2012!

                                                                                                            1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                                              That's great to know Allegra. I was travelling through most of this COTM if memory serves so I have barely cooked from the book. I'll have to spend some time looking through it and planning some meals.

                                                                                                              1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                                                Glad to know you like the book. I was a big advocate of this one being a COTM. I'm often skeptical of "round the world" type books, but Raichlen really did a great job on it. Like you said, there is just one winner after another from this book.

                                                                                                            2. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                                              That sounds wonderful.
                                                                                                              I didn't have a lot of time with this book during its month, but, in my part of the world, high grilling season has arrived very suddenly so time to take it off the shelf.

                                                                                                            3. Dilled Grilled Squid with Beet Skordalia p.517

                                                                                                              Made this up for a quick lunch today, and despite the fact that I had never grilled squid before (nor have much experience cooking it at all) this turned out pretty darned well. Ditto for the skordalia--this is something I've never tasted or even seen before, but it was lovely.

                                                                                                              The skordalia is made by combining cooked potato and beet and mashing to a puree, then adding garlic, dill, and lemon juice, and slowly beating in olive oil until the consistency of mayonnaise. Even though I'm not entirely sure I did it correctly--is it supposed to become an emulsion?--these flavours were so punchy and different to me that I will be sure to make this sauce again, and I will certainly be seeking out other recipes to try (for comparison's sake, of course!).

                                                                                                              For the squid, large tubes--preferably thick, meaty 'steak' style from the west coast-- are cut and scored on either side, and dressed with lemon zest, garlic, dill, s&p, lemon juice and olive oil, then set aside to marinate for 1/2 hour. I was unsure of the origin of my cephalopod's upbringing, but they looked a little too thin to survive a double-sided cross-hatching, so I did only one side. After the marinade, the pale bodies are quickly grilled over high heat for mere minutes, to perfection.

                                                                                                              Though the flavours of the marinade were a little predictable and unexciting, I was still pretty pleased with the clarity of the recipe for a novice squid-griller; the 'steaks' cooked to tender, appealing curled pieces without a hint of rubberiness. The skordalia was well-received by all, and was used over lemon potatoes and with pita alongside the seafood.

                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                                                Very impressive! I find grilling squid to be particularly difficult. I've never mastered it, but sure wish I could. Mine has always turned out rubbery.

                                                                                                                1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                  Thanks! I'm pretty sure it was just beginner's luck; doubt it could be replicated, haha, but it was fun nonetheless.

                                                                                                              2. Grilled Bananas, p. 529

                                                                                                                An interesting way to eat finger bananas, grilled until brown and bubbling. I cooked with propane so had none of the smokiness that charcoal would have created. As it was--as a savoury side--it wasn't for me. With a bit of rum and ice cream, perhaps. Next time I'll try for charcoal and see if it pleases better, and I'll make sure to have a stash of booze and frozen dairy goodness on hand just in case it doesn't!