Herb-Marinated Chicken Skewers with Harissa
Andres Barrera briefly marinates chicken in herbs and cumin before skewering and grilling it; then he serves it with a cool chickpea puree and fiery harissa. His harissa is a knockout, scented with toasted and ground cumin seeds, coriander and caraway seeds, but jarred harissa also works.
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon rosemary leaves
- 1 teaspoon chopped thyme
- 1 teaspoon chopped oregano
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoon caraway seeds
- 2 roasted red peppers from a jar, coarsely chopped
- 1 red Thai chile, with seeds chopped
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Hummus, for serving
- Marinate the chicken: In a large bowl, mix the olive oil with the rosemary, thyme, oregano and ground cumin. Add the chicken and toss well. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Meanwhile, Make the Harissa: In a small skillet, toast the cumin, coriander and caraway seeds over moderately high heat, shaking the skillet a few times, until the spices are fragrant, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a spice grinder and let cool completely. Grind to a powder.
- In a blender, combine the roasted peppers with the chile, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice and ground spices and puree. Season the harissa with salt.
- Light a grill. Thread the chicken pieces onto 8 metal skewers. Season with salt and grill over moderately high heat, turning, until nicely charred and just cooked, about 14 minutes. Serve the skewers with the harissa and hummus.
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