Persian Chicken Kabab | Joojeh Kabab Recipe | igotitfrommymaman.com
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Persian Chicken Kabab – Joojeh Kabab

Nothing beats a plate of aromatic, buttered rice with grilled tomatoes and of course the protagonist of this dish: Joojeh Kabab.

It’s a favourite among our friends and my go-to kabab recipe when we gather for a BBQ. The secret to perfect Persian Chicken Kabab, as you can guess, is the marinade. Keep reading to find out how I make mine.

Persian Chicken Kabab | Joojeh Kabab Recipe | igotitfrommymaman.com

When we have many guests I prepare different kinds of kabab and we just enjoy them on their own as finger food. But if you want my honest opinion the best way to eat it is with rice and grilled tomatoes. Yumm!


Persian Chicken Kabab | Joojeh Kabab Recipe | igotitfrommymaman.com
5 from 1 vote
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Joojeh Kabab – Persian Chicken Kabab

Course Main Course
Cuisine Persian
Keyword Chicken, Kabab, Persian, Rice
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Marinating Time 12 hours
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 4 people
Author Hami

Ingredients

Chicken and Marinade

  • 2.2 lbs chicken thighs (1 kg)
  • 1 cup lemon juice (250 ml)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil (60 ml)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 tsp paprika powder (use smoked paprika if you like)
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp saffron (dissolved in 3 tbsp hot water)

Sides

  • 8 medium tomatoes
  • 2 cups basmati rice (400g)
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil

Instructions

Marinade

  1. Dissolve 1/2 tsp of ground saffron in approx. 3 tbsp hot water.

  2. Skin off the onion and quarter it. Separate the layers and add them to a bowl.

  3. Add the lemon juice and olive oil and combine everything.

  4. Add the spices to the onions, olive oil and lemon juice and combine everything well.

  5. Cut the chicken thighs into 2 to 3 pieces each depending on their size. Cut between the two thigh bones, you do not have to cut through the bone. Try to keep as much meat on each bone as possible. Transfer the chicken pieces into the bowl with the marinade, moving it around until it is completely covered.

  6. Transfer the chicken and marinade into a large freezer bag (or a food container), close it carefully without locking any air in and let the chicken marinate at least 12 hours. I usually marinate the evening before my BBQ, so the chicken has plenty of time to soak up all the flavours.

Grill

  1. Wash the tomatoes and leave them whole. Skewer them through the side on your BBQ skewers. Stab each tomato a couple of times with a small kitchen knife. Set them aside.

  2. Skewer the chicken pieces through their narrow sides, so that their larger surface will be facing the charcoals.

  3. If you like to bbq the onions from the marinade, skewer them as well.

  4. Get your BBQ started about half an hour before you want to start cooking. Once the charcoal turns white it is ready to grill the tomatoes. If you made an onion skewer as well you can add it about 5 minutes after the tomatoes.

  5. Prepare the rice and put it on while the tomatoes are grilling.

  6. Keep an eye on the tomatoes and turn them once the skin turned black on one side. They are ready once the skin turned black all around and they are nice and soft. They should take about 15 minutes but it depends on the temperature. When you hold the skewer down they should slide off without you pushing them. Transfer them into a pan with the lid on and put them close to the BBQ to keep them warm.

  7. By now the charcoal's temperature should be low enough to grill the chicken. It shouldn't be too hot, so the chicken doesn't burn on the outside while still rare inside. A lower temperature allows them to cook evenly, get a nice colour on the outside, and stay juicy inside. Turn the skewers regularly and don't leave them out of side. They should be ready in about 30 minutes but this is only a rough guideline because it depends on the exact temperature of your bbq (and it applies to chicken THIGHS only).

  8. Serve the chicken HOT with rice and tomatoes. Enjoy!

Ingredients (serving 4)

Chicken & Marinade

1 kg / 2.2lbs chicken thighs

250 ml lemon juice

60 ml olive oil

1 medium onion

2 tsp (smoked) paprika powder

1 tsp black pepper

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp ground saffron

Sides

8 medium tomatoes

400g basmati rice (you can find my Persian rice recipe here)

2 tbsp vegetable oil (for the rice)

Time

The day before:

Marinating: 12 hours +

On the day:

Prep: 15

Cook: 60

Total: 75 

Joojeh Kabab | Persian Saffron Chicken Kabab | igotitfrommymaman.com

Instructions

Marinade

Dissolve 1/2 tsp of ground saffron in approx. 3 tbsp hot water.

Skin off the onion and quarter it. Separate the layers and add them to a bowl.

Add the lemon juice and olive oil and combine everything.

Add the spices to the onions, olive oil and lemon juice and combine everything well.

Cut the chicken thighs into 2 to 3 pieces each depending on their size. Cut between the two thigh bones, you do not have to cut through the bone. Try to keep as much meat on each bone as possible. Transfer the chicken pieces into the bowl with the marinade, moving it around until it is completely covered.

Transfer the chicken and marinade into a large freezer bag (or a food container), close it carefully without locking any air in and let the chicken marinate at least 12 hours. I usually marinate the evening before my BBQ, so the chicken has plenty of time to soak up all the flavours.

Marinating chicken for Joojeh Kabab | igotitfrommymaman.com

Grill

Wash the tomatoes and leave them whole. Skewer them through the side on your BBQ skewers. Stab each tomato a couple of times with a small kitchen knife. Set them aside.

Skewer the chicken pieces through their narrow sides, so that their larger surface will be facing the charcoals.

If you like to bbq the onions from the marinade, skewer them as well.

Get your BBQ started about half an hour before you want to start cooking. Once the charcoal turns white it is ready to grill the tomatoes. If you made an onion skewer as well you can add it about 5 minutes after the tomatoes.

Charcoal ready for BBQ

Prepare the rice and put it on while the tomatoes are grilling.

Keep an eye on the tomatoes and turn them once the skin turned black on one side. They are ready once the skin turned black all around and they are nice and soft. They should take about 15 minutes but it depends on the temperature. When you hold the skewer down they should slide off without you pushing them. Transfer them into a pan with the lid on and put them close to the BBQ to keep them warm.

Grilled tomatoes, peppers and onions | igotitfrommymaman.com

By now the charcoal’s temperature should be low enough to grill the chicken. It shouldn’t be too hot, so the chicken doesn’t burn on the outside while still rare inside. A lower temperature allows them to cook evenly, get a nice colour on the outside, and stay juicy inside. Turn the skewers regularly and don’t leave them out of side. They should be ready in about 30 minutes but this is only a rough guideline because it depends on the exact temperature of your bbq (and it applies to chicken THIGHS only).

Joojeh Kabab | Persian Saffron Chicken Kabab | igotitfrommymaman.com

Serve the chicken HOT with rice and tomatoes. You can add some grilled onion as well, if you like.

Persian Chicken Kabab | Joojeh Kabab Recipe | igotitfrommymaman.com

Time to dig in! I hope you enjoy your Joojeh Kabab!

I hope you enjoyed this recipe! If you have any questions please let me know in the comments, I’m always happy to help. I’d love to see your Joojeh Kabab! Feel free to tag me with @igotitfrommymaman on Facebook or Insta so I can take a look and give you a thumbs up!

Wanna save this recipe for later? You can print out the printable version above or pin it to your recipe board.

Looking for more Persian recipes? Here are my Persian classics!

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Thanks for stopping by! Enjoy your meal!

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