Tasty Tuesdays – Shish Taouk

Kebabs are an excellent summer meal; they are easy to make, you can load the skewers with vegetables and you get to fire up the BBQ.  There are many delicious marinade recipes and this one tops the list!  It’s best to marinate the meat for at least 2-4 hours.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon or lime juice
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 3/4 cup plain yogurt
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp fresh black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom seeds
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • Any vegetables you like (ex. red pepper, eggplant, white onion, zucchini, cherry tomatoes, etc.)

Directions

  • Whisk the lemon or lime juice, oil, yogurt, chopped garlic and tomato paste together.
  • With a mortar and pestle, combine the oregano, salt, pepper, cardamom seeds and cinnamon.  Add to the yogurt marinade.
  • Cut chickens into bite sized pieces and add to marinade.
  • Leave in the refrigerator for 2-4 hours.
  • Skewer the chicken with any chopped vegetables and pop on the grill.

Interesting Facts 

 

Yogurt can be a quick and easy snack, and is increasingly being used as a substitute for oil and butter in many recipes.  This fermented dairy product is a great source of calcium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc and vitamins B2, B5 and B12 (Dairy Farmers of Canada, 2012).  As well, high quality yogurt has live bacteria, such as lactobacillus casei, which strengthen your immune system and ultimately improve ones immune response to various diseases and inflammatory bowel disorders (Baharav et al., 2004).  A study done by Meyer et al. (2006) investigated cellular immunity by measuring T cell lymphocytes, which are a type of white blood cell that fight infection, in women consuming yogurt daily.  It was found that daily consumption of yogurt increased the immune cells ability to protect the body from viruses, yeasts and parasites.  In addition to yogurt improving your immune system, it can aid in the balance of ones cholesterol levels by helping to lower LDL while raising HDL (Fabian et al., 2006).  It’s well known to most that yogurt contains calcium which is important for good bone health, however, yogurt also has high levels of the iron binding protein lactoferrin (Cornish et al., 2004).  This glycoprotein enhances the activity of osteoblasts, which are the cells responsible for building bones, while also lowering osteoclasts, which break down the bone matrix to release calcium into the bloodstream (Nijweidi and Feyen, 1986).  So try yogurt as a marinade, your bones are begging you!

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