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Spiedini of Chicken and Zucchini with Almond Salsa Verde

Spiedini is Italian for “little skewers”. These grilled kebabs are paired with a zesty sauce of herbs, nuts, citrus, and capers. For a backyard barbecue, prepare the salsa up to a day ahead, and assemble the skewers earlier in the day. Coat with cooking spray and seasonings just before grilling.

With a wonderfully complex and flavorful sauce like this, the chicken and zucchini need almost no seasoning?just salt, pepper, and the grill’s flame. The salsa’s combination of tangy, briny, herbal, and nutty flavors is perfect for chicken, pork, fish, or shrimp, especially if they’re grilled. To save soaking the skewers for a half an hour, use metal ones instead of wood.

Yield:

6 servings (serving size: 2 spiedini and 2 1/2 tablespoons salsa)

Ingredients

Salsa:

1 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped almonds, toasted
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
3 tablespoons capers, chopped
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 garlic clove, minced

Spiedini:

1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
6 small zucchini, cut into 1-inch slices (about 1 1/4 pounds)
Cooking spray
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preparation

1. Soak 12 (10-inch) wooden skewers in water 30 minutes to prevent burning or use metal skewers.
2. Prepare grill to medium-high heat.
3. To prepare salsa, combine first 12 ingredients; set aside.
4. To prepare spiedini, thread chicken and zucchini alternately onto each of 12 (10-inch) skewers. Coat spiedini with cooking spray; sprinkle evenly with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Place on grill rack; grill 6 minutes or until done, turning once. Serve with salsa.

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