Skewered Chicken/Shish Tawook

Servings : Serves 3-4

Skewered cubes of tender boneless chicken breast with a thick tomato gravy, cubed potatoes and saffron-scented long-grain basmati rice.

Ingredients for Chicken Marinade

  • 750gm boneless chicken breast - cut into cubes
  • 1 tbsp. soya sauce
  • 1 tbsp. yoghurt
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. chilli powder
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tbsp. each ginger and garlic pastes
  • 1 tsp. tandoori masala or paprika powder
  • 1 tbsp. chilli flakes
  • oil as needed
  • 3 capsicum
  • 3 onions

Ingredients for Tomato Gravy

  • 3-4 tomatoes
  • 1/2 bunch coriander
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • pepper, cardamom, cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp. oil
  • 3 green chillies (if any)
  • 1/2 cup plain yoghurt
  • remaining pieces of capsicum n onions from the skewering
  • 1 tbsp. fried onions
  • 1 tbsp. tomato paste/puree
  • salt to taste


For Chicken Marination

Marinate the chicken overnight or at least 4 hours if possible. Thread the cubes on skewers alternating with capsicum/onion cubes. Brush the skewers with a bit of oil and let them sit for a while. Shallow-fry each skewer (or do 2-3 at a go) for 2 minutes on one side then turn n fry for another 2 minutes on the other side, set aside until all are done. Grill on coals or under an oven grill for about 5 minutes on each side. Don’t over-grill otherwise the chicken will become hard. Serve with rice/fries/naan

For Tomato Gravy

Blend tomatoes with coriander, fried onions, yoghurt, chilies and remaining pieces of capsicum n onions. Heat the oil, add whole pepper, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon and a tsp. of cumin, then add the garlic. Pour in the blended mixture and cook for a few minutes until the mixture is thick and just about done. Add the tbsp. of tomato paste, let it cook for a few more minutes and adjust salt/chili. Serve with a garnish of fried onions n coriander.

For Saffron Rice

Soak a few strands of saffron plus a drop of yellow food color in some milk and set aside. (about 4 tbsp. of milk) Soak the rice for half an hour first. Then add it to boiling salted water with 1 tbsp. of oil and juice of half a lemon….boil until it is almost done (about three-quarter done). Drain, then put the rice back into your pot. Drizzle with saffron/yellow color milk. Also drizzle 2 tbsp. of oil on the rice. Cover and seal tight then let it steam on very low heat for 10-15 minutes.

Just before serving, add a dollop of butter to the very hot rice, toss together and serve. 🙂

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