PARTNER POST: Dive into the 120 days of summer with Santa Rita wines that pair perfectly with the foods of the season, straight off the grill.
Take your grilling to a whole new flavorful level with grilled lemon chicken skewers served with a spiced harissa yogurt.
Say bye-bye to boring grilling this summer! These Lemon Chicken Skewers cook up perfectly on the grill and are served with a side of Harissa Yogurt Sauce for extra flavor.
Flavor is the name of the game when grilling – In my book at least. I’m not really into boring hot dogs, overdone chicken breasts, and plain jane burgers. So, I’m throwing something new into the mix this year with these chicken skewers.
The chicken is marinated in a lemon/garlic/red wine vinaigrette and skewered in alternation with lemon halves and cherry tomatoes. As they grill, the lemons intensify in flavor, and the tomatoes burst perfectly, while the chicken stays perfectly tender. But the winner of this chicken dinner? The harissa yogurt sauce.
Have you tried harissa? It’s traditionally a blend of hot chili peppers (which are often smoked), garlic, olive oil, and middle eastern spices such as cumin, coriander, mint and caraway. Essentially – A flavor bomb. I recently swirled some into a bowl of hummus and was immediately addicted. Ever since then, I’m been dreaming up ways to use harissa again. Why not swirl it into a bowl of tangy yogurt and use it as a dipping sauce for these chicken skewers? They’ve already got plenty of flavor on their own, but flavor on flavor equals extra deliciousness.
After they cook, I like to let the skewers cool a bit and then squeeze the grilled lemon over the chicken, with a ramekin of harissa yogurt on the side for dipping. I served our skewers alongside a simple green salad and called it good. But they would also be great served with a side of rice pilaf.
I served these skewers with a 120 Sauvignon Blanc from Santa Rita – Fresh and fruity with abundant citrus and herbal notes, it makes a great match for the tanginess of the lemon and the spices found in the harissa.
For more grilling inspiration with Santa Rita, check out this grilled Chilean chicken and pebre sauce.
- 1½ pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into cubes
- ½ tsp. salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 Tbsp.Badida Complete seasoning
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 4 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
- 1½ Tbsp. honey
- 1 Tbsp. cumin
- 2 garlic cloves finely minced or pressed
- 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
- 3 lemons sliced in half
Harissa Yogurt Sauce
- 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1½ Tbsp. harissa paste
- 1½ Tbsp. lemon juice
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Season the chicken with the salt, pepper and Sazon seasoning and place it in a baking dish. Whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, honey, cumin and garlic and pour it over the chicken. Marinate for at least 30 minutes, or overnight.
- Preheat grill to high heat.
- Skewer the chicken, lemon halves and tomatoes in an alternating pattern.
- Grill for 2-3 minutes per side, until the chicken juices run clear and the chicken and lemons are charred. Serve with harissa yogurt sauce on the side.
Harissa Yogurt Sauce:
- In a small bowl combine the yogurt, harissa and lemon juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
I'm Erin - a self-taught weeknight cook. I occasionally like to delve into the more complicated recipes, like homemade pasta, Cioppino, and boeuf bourguignon. But for the most part, I work full-time, come home, pour a glass of vino and start cooking away.