They really do need to be marinated for a minimum of six to eight hours, so although they don’t take long to cook, you do need to plan ahead.
If you don’t have mild sweet Spanish paprika, reduce the quantity to 1 tspn.
1lb/450g lamb rump or pork loin or fillet, trimmed of all sinews and cut into 1″ cubes
For the marinade:
1 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tspn fennel seeds
1/4 tsp ground ginger
Pinch of ground cinnamon and nutmeg
Pinch of ground black pepper
2 fat cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
1 tsp salt
Pinch of saffron, infused in 1/3 cup of hot water
1 tblsp fresh or dried oregano, crumbled
1 bay leaf, crumbled
2 tblsp parsley, roughly chopped
1 tblsp sweet Spanish paprika
1 tblsp red wine vinegar
2 tblsp olive oil
Pound the whole spices to a powder.
Pound the garlic and salt in a pestle and mortar to make a paste and transfer to a bowl.
Add all the spices, the saffron and its water, herbs, vinegar and olive oil to the garlic paste and mix thoroughly.
Add the cubed meat to the marinade, making sure it’s well coated, then cover and refrigerate for at least 6-8 hours.
Thread onto skewers (soak them first if they’re wooden to stop them burning).
Grill or barbecue on a high heat until cooked through but still juicy, turning so they cook evenly.
Very good with a tomato, mint and onion salad and this jewelled rice dish. I helped make it for a friend’s party and I think it originated with Jamie Oliver but I’ve recreated it from memory and (inevitably) tweaked it a bit.
You can of course adjust the quantity of chilli if you’d like it to be milder but please don’t leave it out altogether. The lemon zest is non-negotiable too …
Jewelled Rice Salad
250g long grain rice, cooked and cooled
200g roasted red peppers from a jar, drained and thinly sliced
1-2 fat fruity red chillies, deseeded and thinly sliced
Small bunch of spring onions (scallions), thinly sliced, including the green parts
A handful of mint leaves, chopped
A handful of basil leaves, chopped
A handful of chives, snipped into short lengths
The zest of a lemon
About 4 tblspns of vinaigrette, made with a good olive oil, the juice of the lemon, salt and pepper
A handful of pomegranate seeds (optional)
Thinly slice the peppers and chillies, chop the herbs and mix them into the cooled rice.
Dress with the lemon vinaigrette, zest a lemon over the top and mix well.
Taste and adjust seasoning. Scatter with a handful of pomegranate seeds if you have them.