Shishkebabs-Farmers Market Vegetables and Smoked Sausage
Everyone loves shishkebabs because they are easy to make and fun to serve.
But it is so easy to mess up by skewering things that have different cooking times! Follow these simple guidelines for perfect kebabs every time. Once you learn the ins and outs, feel free to try skewering your favorite meats and vegetables.
For the shishkebabs:
1 13-16 oz. package pre-cooked Pork, Chicken or Turkey sausages, such as
Smoked, Andouille, or your favorite variety
1 medium-size red bell pepper
1 medium-size green bell pepper
1 red onion
12 large button mushrooms or 1 large Portabello mushroom
For the glaze:
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 Tablespoons of your favorite mustard
1 Tablespoon honey
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1-2 cloves garlic, mashed and diced
1/4 cup good quality olive oil
Special equipment needed:
Metal or bamboo skewers
Soak the bamboo skewers in water while preparing the sausages and vegetables
or at least an hour if possible.
I often notice bell peppers sticking out about two inches from the skewer, blocking the grill from direct contact with the meat and other vegetables that really need to char, such as onions and zucchini. Bell peppers tend to cook quickly and are one vegetable that benefits from under cooking! So be sure to prepare all the vegetables to a fairly uniform size, about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 inch across.
The sausages are already cooked, making your day alot easier. No preparing and marinating meat, hoping that it cooks properly when the vegetables cook. Since the sausages are already cooked, cut the vegetables slightly larger, allowing them direct access to the heat. The casing of the sausages tends to dry out and get tough if exposed to the heat for too long. With this in mind, slice the sausages in 1 inch lengths and skewer them with the round edges facing out.
Cut the onions right through the stem end in quarters and then halve the quarters again. Peel the outer skins and discard, leaving the stem end intact. Halve the bell peppers, remove the seeds and membrane and cut into 1 inch squares. Choose large button mushrooms or cut the Portabello mushroom into chunks as big as the largest vegetables.
Preparation of the vegetables and sausages may be done up to 12 hours in advance if they are kept covered and refrigerated.
Whisk the lemon juice, mustard, honey and soy sauce together creating an emulsion. Slowly pour in the olive oil while continuing to whisk. Stir in the mashed and diced garlic. This part may be done up to a day in advance and kept refrigerated.
Plan on one large (the metal skewers tend to be longer) or two smaller bamboo
skewers per person. Make a few extra for the hearty appetites. Thread the soaked bamboo skewers or metal skewers with the prepared sausages and vegetables. I highly recommend you have a small brush for the glaze and for
barbecuing in general. If you do not have one, toss the vegetables and sausages in just enough of the lemon glaze to coat them before threading the skewers.
Pre-heat the grill to just the right temperature. Dad’s know when it is right so have him prepare the grill. Call your Dad or a friends Dad for the best input.) Seriously, there are so many types of gas and charcoal grills that I will leave the exact preparation to you, your experience and the manufacturers directions. Brush the kebabs evenly and generously with the lemon glaze. Place on the grill for about 3- 5 minutes on the first side. Turn a full 180 degrees for another 3-5 minutes. Brush with the glaze one more time trying to avoid dripping and flare-ups. Make quarter turns for about 2-3 minutes on each of the remaining 2 sides or until done.
Place the kebabs over the Lemon Thyme Cous Cous. Pour the remaining glaze over the kebabs on the Cous Cous (if there is any left) and serve.