Moroccan Lamb and Vegetable Kabobs

Foodland Ontario

Foodland Ontario

In the Mediterranean region, as with other traditional cuisines, meat was used as a garnish, not as the centrepiece of a meal.  Often it was done for economic reasons – cucina povera – cuisine of the poor in Italy, for example.  But the result was a healthier nutritional profile for the meal with  plenty of room for assorted vegetables, legumes and whole grains on the plate.

Kabobs are a delicious way to enjoy meat while upping your vegetable or fruit intake.  Be adventurous and go for a variety of flavours. For instance, beef threaded on skewers in between chucks of peppers, onions and mangos or peaches are quite tasty.

This  taste of the Mediterranean, adapted from Foodland Ontario, highlights  lamb and vegetable combos which  are both popular dishes in Morocco.   Place vegetables and meat on separate skewers because vegetables take longer to cook than meat. Serve with whole wheat  couscous or brown  rice.
Moroccan Lamb and Vegetable Kabobs

Serves 4

•    1 tsp (5 mL) each ground cumin and  coriander
•    1/2 tsp (2 mL) each smoked or sweet paprika, garlic powder, salt and pepper
•    1/4 tsp (1 mL) each cayenne pepper and cinnamon
•    1 lb (500 g) boneless Ontario Lamb Leg, cut into 1-1/2 inch (4 cm) cubes
•    1   Sweet Yellow Pepper
•    1   Sweet Green or Orange Pepper
•    1   Red Onion
•    8   Cherry Tomatoes
•    2 tbsp (25 mL) extra virgin olive oil

Combine cumin, coriander,  paprika, garlic powder, salt,  pepper, cayenne and cinnamon; set aside 2 tsp (10 mL) for vegetables. Toss lamb cubes with remaining seasoning mixture. Let stand 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, cut yellow and green peppers into 1-1/2 inch (4 cm) squares. Peel and cut onion into 8 wedges, keeping root end intact to keep onion from falling apart. Thread pepper and onions evenly among 4 skewers. Thread tomatoes between 2 skewers. Combine reserved 2 tsp (10 mL) seasoning mixture with 1 tbsp (15 mL) of the oil; brush evenly over vegetables.

Thread lamb among 4 skewers, spacing pieces slightly apart for even cooking. Brush with remaining oil.

Place pepper and onion skewers on grill over medium-high or medium heat; cook for 10 minutes. Add lamb skewers to grill; cook until tender and desired doneness, 6 to 8 minutes, turning once or twice. Remove skewers as they are done. Let meat stand a few minutes. Grill tomato skewers for a few minutes until lightly grilled.

Serve each person 1 lamb and 1 vegetable skewer. Slide tomatoes off skewers and divide among plates.

Nutrition information per serving
•    Calories:  254
•    Protein:  26 grams
•    Fat:  13 grams
•    Saturated fat:  4  grams
•    Carbohydrate:  10  grams
•    Dietary fibre: 2  grams
•    Sodium:  330  milligrams

Do you have a favourite  way to keep meat portion in check on the barbecue? Please share in the comment section below.

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Categories: Recipes

Author:Rosie Schwartz

Rosie Schwartz is a Toronto-based consulting dietitian and writer.

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