Joojeh kebab on charcoal barbecue


Last year we turned our old gas burning barbecue into a charcoal one, in an attempt to recover some of our nostalgic memories of delicious Iranian style kabaabs made on charcoal burning braziers. It was an extremely successful operation with rewarding results!

Blessed by a covered carport, which we use as a kind of porch, we now indulge in grilled everything throughout the year. It might not smell “seasonal” to send wafts of grilled chicken or mouth watering skewer meat kebab in minus 30 degrees out in the snow-covered neighbourhood, but

it is so much fun to do so !! Plus, the food is always, always tastier, healthier and faster to prepare 

 To start, here is our version of “joojeh kabaab” with rice. Basically, the difference between kebab (which, as a verb means cooking on fire) with grilled is that in kebab, we skewer meat, instead of putting them on grill – a delicate culinary point, taste-wise. Joojeh kabaab traditional way is never marinated; the tenderness of the meat has to do with the age of the chicken: it should be young, a joojeh. So, like many other mixed trades we have acquired as a result of living abroad as Iranians, here are how we make joojeh kebab, very simple: marinate the breast in grated onion, salt, black pepper, lime juice, olive oil and skewer big chunks. Or marinate legs and spread them on grill. Tomatoes should go in skewers too, but other vegetables are easier to handle on grill. One way or the other, once it is on charcoal fire it is bound to be delicious. Try it with rice by the way! Next time, I will tell you about the more complicated way of preparing kabaab koobideh (with ground meat) and kabaab barg (with strips of meat or tenderloin)

Note: Technically speaking, converting a gas barbecue into a charcoal one is relatively easy and you could learn more about it here.  A few points to keep in mind, though: charcoal is obviously messier than gas to handle, and starting a fire takes more skill, time and patience. Also, the amount of charcoal used, hence the degree of heat produced are determining factors in the look shape and taste of the meat. In other words, you should really enjoy “playing with fire”, to handle a charcoal barbecue on regular basis, Or be prepared to spend some time and energy in order to savour the indisputably better tasting foods produced on wood charcoal fire.

4 Comments on “Joojeh kebab on charcoal barbecue”

  1. مهزیار says:

    به به 🙂
    مثل همیشه عالی

  2. Gwen says:

    Thank you so much for you recipe. I spent many hours with friends in Chicago as they grilled. I have wonderful memories of eating kabaab barg, joojeh kabaab and kabaab koobideh. Her mother also made “carrot rice” which I loved.The food was always delicious. They always had a platter of melons and fruit with nuts in the evening, of course lots of tea. I still remember the distinct smell of her mother’s tea blend. when ever I walked in the house someone handed me a steaming cup of tea.

    • Booteh says:

      Thanks Gwen for your comment; I am glad you liked my post. It is wonderful that you have lasting and “tasty” memories of Persian food and hospitality. I hope the past tense you’re using relates to mere geographic distance now.

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