This post is all about putting food on a skewer. In other words, it’s about tips for successful skewering for a vegetarian barbecue. Let’s start from the ingredients, shall we?
What can be skewered?
Basically, anything that can be sliced or cubed is suitable for skewering. Most vegetables and some fruits can be skewered. Here, I have a list of commonly used ingredients that can be skewered:
• Vegetables (artichokes, asparagus, capsicum, corn on the cob, banana chillies, eggplant, fennel, leek, mushrooms, onions, potatoes, sweet potatoes (kumera), pumpkin, zucchini, tomatoes, etc.)
• Fruits (watermelon, pears, pineapple, etc.)
• Veggie sausages cut into bite-sized pieces
• Veggie prawns, larger the better
• Lamyong Soy Nuggets
• Lamyong Mushroom Chunks
• Cheese (haloumi, paneer or any other hard cheese varieties)
Skewers can either be wooden or metal (stainless steel). I have them both and they are used for different purposes in my kitchen. For instance, if you’re making shish kebab style anything, I recommend wooden skewers. If you are making something like Adana kebab, you would definitely need flat, metal ones as the mashed mixture needs to be pressed against a flat surface so they stick better.
One thing with wooden skewers like bamboo is they need to be soaked in hot water before using to prevent them from burning during the cooking process. And with the stainless-steel ones, because they are good heat conductors, they should cook the food more quickly.
You could also use lemongrass or rosemary twigs instead of bamboo skewers. Lemongrass skewers are good for Asian-inspired dishes as they will flavour the food.
Preparing food for skewering
• Food for skewering should ideally be cut same size so that each different ingredient will be cooked at the same time as the others. This is essential especially if you’re cooking on a flat surface rather than flame-licking grill.
• Tofu, seitan and tempeh need to be marinated before the barbecue.