see, not a vegetarian

Dinner! (And also part of lunch the next day.)

Last weekend’s grilling attempt was a success in spite of itself. Somewhat counterintuitively, I went with a smaller fire on the day I was making meat. Everything got cooked eventually, but I was adding twigs and whatnot because it was a pretty tiny pile of charcoal.

Part of my birthday present to myself was grill bling, which included a set of skewers. I picked up these, which are nice and long and, perphaps most importantly, flat, so you can easily flip the food without it twirling around with the skewer. The down side is that they are metal, which means they get hot, which means you can’t pick them up with naked paws. Considering they’re resting over open flame and I’m pyrophobic and would be using something anyway, that’s an exchange that’s fine with me. They’re solid without being heavy and easy to clean and store, so thumbs up there.

I mentioned the long, right? That’s my 9×13″ Pyrex they’re overhanging, which means you can get a fair bit on each. I marinated two chicken breasts and an onion and there’s most of a pepper plus a potato for a (not really needed) stopper.

The marinade is the same one I used on the grilled tofu the other week, which is in turn based on Deborah Madison’s Sesame-Ginger Marinade from her Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. Adapted for, um, meat.

2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 heaping tablespoon minced ginger
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3 tablespoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon soy sauce

I let the chicken and onion marinate overnight in the fridge, but it could work in less time on the counter.

My too-small fire… wait, can I start the Inadvertent Slow Food Movement? We can skip the wacky antiglobalization politics and junk science and just have people whose ovens aren’t calibrated/can’t get over 425F or haven’t mastered the charcoal-to-food ratio yet and like to cook anyway.

Too-small fire or not, I did eventually get it all cooked. Except the potatoes, which were still raw-ish.

As can be seen above, the kebabs were served with jasmine rice and lettuce and made an excellent dinner. And three more lunches.

Since I’m showing off my grill bling, my funky yellow gloves for chimney overturning/twig breaking/skewer lifting:

Why, yes, I did get them at K-Mart.

Also on the poultry front this week was my initial attempt to grind my own chicken. I bought thighs, which were what was on sale, but in hindsight that was a mixed blessing because I had to de-skin and de-bone. The de-skinning was easier, although I might have been a little lazy with the de-fatting because they were going to be ground. (I am normally a fetishist with the de-ickying. What I cannot de-icky, I do not eat, which is why I don’t eat as much meat as I should.)

The grinding was initially a hellacious failure, entirely because I neglected to attach the little blade to the spiral mover, but once I got that corrected, it was all good and ridiculously easy. I foresee more meat-grinding in my future.

Since nobody likes to see how the sausage gets, made, you can provide your own mental picture of a pile of ground chicken thighs (and an onion) and I’ll just get on to the end result, which was meat sauce.

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