Chicken Shawarma with Marinated Feta
FEATURING MONJAY MEZZA’S MARINATED FETA
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Some might say that Alexander the Great’s biggest achievement was extending the Macedonian Empire from the Atlantic Ocean all the way to India. Pfft. Big deal. That pales in comparison to what his soldiers were doing every night for dinner: skewering hunks of meat on their swords and roasting them over crackling fires. It may not sound like much of a feat but, without it, we wouldn’t have the gyro.
Can you imagine a world like that? Best not to. Let’s move on.
Cousin to the gyro (and definitely not the same thing) is the shawarma. With its roots in the Levant, shawarma differentiates itself from the gyro with its meat and its toppings. Firstly, it’s usually made with chicken that’s been fragrantly marinated in spices like garlic, cinnamon, turmeric and cardamom. Secondly, while it can come topped with tahini, tabouleh and hummus, it must never come with tzatziki.
Now that we’ve outlined the rules, let’s break them. No flatbread, no hummus or tabouleh. But the flavours are still distinctly shawarma-esque.
- 600g skinless chicken thighs
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
- 100g Monjay Mezza's Marinated Feta
- ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 generous tablespoon of honey
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- ½ head of cauliflower, broken into florets
- 1 bunch of kale, torn into rough pieces
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- A handful of chopped parsley
Place the chicken, spices, honey, garlic and olive oil in a roasting dish. Sprinkle with a teaspoon of salt and a few grinds of black pepper, then get your fingers involved and really work the marinade into the meat.
Leave for as long as you can, which is about five minutes for most people.
Add the cauliflower and give it a quick toss, then pop into the oven that you’ve conveniently pre-heated to 180 degrees.
After 15 minutes, take the tray out of the oven and tuck the pieces of kale around the chicken and cauliflower and scatter over the cranberries. Put back in the oven for another 10-15 minutes.
Once the chicken has browned and the kale is slightly charred and crispy, take the tray out of the oven. Crumble over the feta and scatter with parsley, then eat it.
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