Mosen, our driver in Iran, has also owned restaurants and is passionate about food. He gave me his special chicken kebab recipe which I have recreated here. He always uses bone-in leg and thigh pieces, but I have used nibbles for ease; you could use boneless thigh, just cook for a shorter time.
Recipe Category: Issue 199
I tend to barbecue vegetables without oil as I find the flavour much nicer, and then drench them in a punchy dressing straight off the grill so they can soak up all that extra flavour. Use a nice sharp parmesan or, for a change, a crumbled feta.
Dessert (or breakfast) doesn’t come any simpler than this. Date syrup can be found in some supermarkets (in the sugars section) but if unavailable try using either maple or rice syrup instead. Normally I loathe instant coffee but Coffee Supreme’s freeze-dried instant coffee is superb to use here. The berries can be changed to what you have available; blackberries and strawberries, the last of the stone fruits and even sliced bananas would also be excellent.
I love the generous flavour of caperberries, however capers can be used in their place if preferred. Prepare the mustard crumbs up to 2 days in advance and store in an airtight container or jar. Fresh oregano is strong, so a few leaves are sufficient.
Recipes & food styling Jane Lyons & Will Bowman
The mustard dressing recipe is from Cara, my wife. It’s a simple dressing, great to have in the fridge on standby for all salads.
Butternut is one of my favourite pumpkins, partly because it is easy to peel but also I find the shape and size appealing, and the flavour delicate. Here I’ve paired it with toum – the Lebanese version of aioli that is not for the faint hearted – and some sweet and nutty prosciutto, but feel free to omit this if you wish.
FOR THE TOUM
It’s hard to make this in small amounts. I use a mortar and pestle to mash the garlic then transfer either to a bowl and whisk by hand or use a stick blender to emulsify the ingredients. It will keep refrigerated for up to a month. Don’t use pre-crushed or pre-peeled garlic; it will just be a bitter mess. And on that note, if the cloves have green germs, remove them for the same reason. Use olive oil for a stronger flavour, rapeseed oil for a more mellow toum.