Ainsley Harriott's Harissa Lemon Chicken Skewers with Glazed Aubergines and Garlic-Mint Sauce
While in Morocco, I just had to cook a dish using harissa –the delicious North-African spice paste made from chillies and fragrant spices.The vibrant tang of preserved lemons works beautifully in a spicy marinade and these chicken skewers and fire-glazed cumin and honey aubergines certainly went down a treat with the crew. This harissa marinade is also great with lamb or vegetables.
|For the Harissa Lemon Chicken Skewers:|
|2 tbsp||Greek yoghurt|
|1 tsp||ground cumin|
|1 tsp||hot smoked paprika|
|1||garlic clove, grated|
|1 heaped tbsp||Moroccan harissa paste|
|1||preserved lemon, chopped|
|2 tbsp||olive oil|
|4||skinless chicken breasts, cut into 2.5-cm cubes|
|sea salt and freshly ground black pepper|
|For the Glazed Aubergines:|
|4||baby aubergines, quartered|
|2 tsp||ground cumin|
|2 tsp||runny honey|
|A good pinch each of||salt and pepper|
|1 tbsp||olive oil|
|For the Garlic-Mint Sauce:|
|6 tbsp||Greek yogurt|
|2||garlic cloves, grated|
|2 tbsp||chopped fresh mint leaves|
|juice of ½ lemon|
|sea salt, to taste|
|a sprinkle of sweet/hot smoked paprika, to serve|
|a few mint sprigs|
You will need: four skewers
Preheat a barbecue or a griddle pan over a medium–high heat. If not using the barbecue, additionally preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas 6.
First, marinate the chicken for the skewers. In a large bowl, mix together the yoghurt, cumin, smoked paprika, garlic, harissa paste, preserved lemon, olive oil and a pinch each of salt and pepper, stirring to combine. Toss the chicken cubes in the marinade until coated, then cover and leave to marinate for at least 20 minutes.
For the aubergines, place the aubergine wedges in a separate bowl, add the cumin and honey and mix together until coated. Season with a good pinch each of salt and pepper and drizzle with the oil and mix again.
Next, make the garlic mint sauce. In a small bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients except the salt until well combined. Season with salt to taste and set aside.
Thread the chicken onto four skewers and place onto the hot barbecue or griddle pan. Cook for 5–6 minutes, then turn and cook the other side for a further 4–6 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
Meanwhile, place the aubergines onto the barbecue and cook for 8–10 minutes, turning regularly, until golden and soft. If not using a barbecue, pop the aubergines onto a baking tray and into the oven for 15–20 minutes.
Serve the chicken skewers and glazed aubergines with the garlic mint sauce on the side, sprinkled with a little smoked paprika, with pitta breads, a few sprigs of mint and some lemon wedges for squeezing over.