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Godfreys Guide to Cooking Kebabs

Kebabs - Prepare your own - or just cook our own

Kebabs have long lost their dubious takeaway image and now feature in many a famous Chefs repertoire - as well being a very tasty addition to many stylish dinner parties - or simply as firm, family favourite and fun meals

If time is short 

At Godfreys you can choose between preparing your own - or if time is short - quickly cooking our own

Truly Free-Range Meats 

Whichever you choose to do - you will be enjoying Premium Quality, truly Free-Range Meats from farms with impeccable husbandry standards - cut and prepared by our Master Butchers

Absolute perfection 

None of those misshapen clods of Meat - irregularly cut, from different muscles - but instead - expertly Dry-Aged on the bone Meat - and then beautifully trimmed of all sinew and gristle - to absolute perfection

So here are a few Chefs tips on ensuring a perfectly prepared Kebab

Plenty of surface area 

Meat and Vegetables cut into chunks have plenty of surface area for soaking in flavourful marinades. And the marinades can be as simple or as elaborate as you want them to be - or you can even use your favourite dry rubs.

Perfect Kebabs 

But many people neglect the few grilling fundamentals that separate truly great Kebabs from mere mediocre Kebabs. It’s about more than just marinades. Here are a few basic techniques to help you make some killer Kebabs 

The Basics 

• Do check temperatures with a Digital Thermometer - avoid thinking that small chunks should be “eye-ready”

• Don’t pack the chunks tightly together to fit more on each skewer and thereby abandoning the power of convective currents between the chunks

• Ensure you are careful to cut Meats and Vegetables into uniform-sized chunks for uniform cooking

• Don’t use Meat Cuts with too much connective tissue

• Don’t cook your Vegetables over direct heat

Tips for Success: 

Keep the Meat or Veggies spaced out. 

If you leave a bit of space between each item on each skewer to ensure even heat circulation all around - the Meat and Vegetables will cook more evenly

Packed too tight 

Meat that is packed together tightly on a skewer will still cook, but not evenly. 
The heat from your grill will circulate around the Meat as if it’s one piece rather than several 

Because of this, the Meat in the centre will take longer to cook than the Meat on the ends, and those end pieces will be overcooked by the time the centre pieces have come to their correct temperature

Cut everything into consistently uniform pieces

You’ll want each bit of Meat to be finished at the same time. If the sizes of the chunks of Meat are cut inconsistently, the smaller pieces will overcook by the time the larger ones come to their correct temperature. 

The size of the pieces of meat is critical 

If they’re too small they’ll overcook and dry out. If they too large you don’t get the internal temperature right.

What types of meat work best 

Beef, Lamb, Pork and Chicken. 

Grilling involves very high cooking temperatures so the best Kebab Meats will be
tender with very little fat and connective tissue 

Too small chunks of Meat 

Too small chunks of Meat will cook very quickly on the grill so there won’t be nearly enough time for fat to render and connective tissue to properly dissolve. 

Avoid meats that need slow-and-low cooking and that have substantial amounts of connective tissue - and always trim away any chunks of fat, gristle, or connective tissue you do see before cutting the tender Meat into cubes.

Four Keys to great Marinades 

Marinating Meat seasons and tenderizes it, which is especially helpful for Cuts of Meat that are slightly tougher, very lean, or otherwise lower on flavour. 

• Oil: Oil makes the marinade thicker and tackier, helping it stick to the Meat better. It is a vehicle to flavour the Meat since some aromatics such as Garlic and some Spices are Oil soluble. A thin coating of Oil helps heat to transfer more evenly as the Meat cooks, and it also helps keep the Meat from sticking to the grill..

• Salt: When Salt is dissolved in liquid it dissolves the Myosin in Protein fibres, making the meat a bit looser and able to retain its own moisture better. Salt also penetrates into the Meat, seasoning it.

• Fruits rich in Proteases: Proteases are enzymes that break down protein in muscle fibres and connective tissue. Naturally occurring Proteases can be found in Pineapples, Mangoes, Papayas, and Ginger

• Acid: Acids in marinades help to break down connective tissue, slightly tenderizing the final product. Acids can also denature the protein in muscle fibres, chemically “cooking” it. If the ratio of acid in the marinade is too high, the Meat can become opaque and chalky. Keep your acid to oil ratio at 1:1 or lower


Aromatics are ingredients that only flavour the exterior of the Meat. Garlic, Onions, Shallots, Herbs, and Spices can all be powerful flavour components, especially when combined with Oil.

Aromatics are not considered an essential component in marinades since their effect is merely superficial, rather than improving the texture and cooking process like the other four ingredients do.

When Recycling is not OK 

Used marinade is contaminated with raw Meat juice and is therefore unsafe to consume. Even boiling might not make it safe. If you want a Sauce to serve with cooked Meat, make a little extra marinade and set it aside before adding the rest to the raw Meat. 

Skewers - The Debate of Stainless Steel vs. Wood 


Stainless Steel skewers are great because they’re durable and don’t need to soak in water before grilling, and you never have to worry about splinters. If you’re using wood skewers, you’ll need to be sure and soak them for 2 hours prior to grilling to keep them from burning.


Wood skewers have the advantage of being disposable. Just chuck them along with anything else that goes in the recycle bin. Metal skewers are reusable, but they do give you something else to wash. The choice is up to you. 

How long do Kebabs take to grill? 

The length of cooking time depends on a few factors…

• The temperature of your grill and how well it’s maintained throughout the cook
• The size of the cubed meat
• And your desired doneness temperature

A rough estimate of Kebab grilling time is 10-15 minutes but, for Meat, you should always gauge doneness by the measured internal temperature. 

Different doneness temperatures 

Keep in mind that smaller pieces of Meat will cook more quickly, and different types of Meat will have different doneness temperatures. For example, Beef should be pulled at about 125-130°f (52-54°c), Chicken at 155-160°f (68-71°c), and Seafood around 125-140°f (52-60°c). 

So, if you choose to make your own killer Kebabs - here are some recipe ideas for you to consider:

• Zingy Teriyaki Beef Skewers - by Justine Pattison
If you're looking for a light and healthy dinner then these Kebabs are just the ticket - rich in folate, fibre, Iron and Vitamin C, plus 3 of your 5-a-day. Healthy
Preparation time 20 mins : Cooking time 25 mins - plus marinating.. Click here for Sirloin Steak 
(Click here for recipe) 

• Bavette Shami Kebabs, Black Cardamom, Cumin & Cinnamon - by Sumayya Usmani
Not on a skewer - and slow cooked - but still called a Kebab - is this glorious Shami Kebab recipe with slow-cooked Bavette Steak rather than the traditional ground Beef. Laced with Black Cardamom, Black Cumin and Herbs, these Kebabs will make a wonderful celebration starter
Preparation/Cooking time 3 hrs. Click here for Bavette Steak 
(Click here for recipe) 

• Alfresco BBQ Beef Kebabs
These Beef Kebabs marinated in Yogurt, Garlic and Lemon are ideal for informal outdoor BBQ dining. Sprinkle over freshly chopped Chives and serve immediately with a crisp Salad.
Preparation time 10 mins : Cooking time 10 mins. Click here for Hand Diced Beef

(Click here for recipe)

• Moroccan Kefta Kebab  - by Christine Benlafquih
Kefta (or kofta) is a deliciously spiced and tender type of Moroccan Kebab made using Ground Beef or Lamb. The mixture is flavoured with Cumin, Paprika, Minced Onion, Coriander, and Parsley and formed into skewers. The Cinnamon, Cayenne Pepper, and Mint leaves are optional but highly recommended. Serve your Kebabs with a fresh Salad and a side of Couscous or serve on Pita Bread as a Kefta sandwich with Tomato and Roasted Pepper Salad. 
Preparation time 20 mins - plus 60 mins chill time : Cooking time 10 min. Click here for Lean Minced Beef,
 Lean Lamb Mince
(Click here for recipe)

• Lamb Kebabs with Peppery Lime Marinade - by Roopa Gulati
Team these tangy Kebabs with a tossed Salad and enjoy a spicy supper
Preparation/Cooking time 40 mins - plus 1 hr chilling time. Click here for Lamb Neck Fillets 
(Click here for recipe) 

• Lamb Souvlaki Skewers 
Make a big batch of these delicious Greek Kebabs, enjoy some now - and also freeze some for a sunny day. 
Preparation time 10 mins : Cooking time 15 mins - plus marinating. Click here for Boneless Leg of Lamb, Boneless Shoulder of Lamb 
(Click here for recipe) 

• Lamb Shawarma
This delicious Lamb Shawarma is a Middle Eastern street food packed with a variety of Spices and the Meat is grilled or barbecued.  Lamb Leg or Shoulder cubes are great for this recipe sprinkled and marinated with Ras el Hanout or Moroccan Spices and Pomegranate Molasses - very moreish. 
Preparation time 20 mins : Cooking time 20 mins - plus marinating. Click here for Hand Diced Lamb 
(Click here for recipe) 

• Minty Lamb Kebabs 
These minty Kebabs are a treat for the whole family and fun for the kids to make too. Easily doubled/halved
Preparation time 10 mins : Cooking time 10 mins. Click here for Hand Diced Lamb 
(Click here for recipe) 

• Spicy Lamb & Feta Skewers with Greek Brown Rice Salad 
Kofta-style Kebabs with Feta, Harissa and Onion, served with a wholesome Basmati Rice flavoured with Parsley and Mint. 
Preparation time 25 mins : Cooking time 20 -25 mins. Click here for Lean Lamb Mince 
(Click here for recipe) 

• Lamb Kebabs - by Manju Malhi
These spicy Lamb Kebabs are perfect for the barbecue. Serve with hot Pitta Bread and Tomato and Chilli Chutney.
Preparation time 30 mins to 1 hr : Cooking time10 to 30 mins. Click here for Lean Lamb Mince 
(Click here for recipe)

• Spicy Chicken Kebabs - by Antony Worrall Thompson
These fresh, spicy Kebabs don’t just taste great - the whole family will enjoy making them
Preparation time 30 mins : Cooking time 15 mins - plus marinating. Click here for Chicken Fillets 
(Click here for recipe) 

• Tavuk Şiş: Authentic Turkish Chicken Kebab - by Elizabeth Taviloglu
Kebabs originated in Turkey, so you can't get much more authentic than these Turkish Chicken Kebabs, or Tavuk şiş (tah-vook’ sheesh’). The key to great authentic Turkish Kebab is in the quality of the Meat and the flavour imparted by the marinade. In a typically hospitable Turkish way, Chicken Kebabs are often served alongside grilled Beef and Lamb to offer an alternative for diners
Preparation time 15 mins : Cooking time 12 mins - plus 8 hrs marinating. Click here for Chicken Breast Fillets, Chicken Thighs Boneless Skinless 
(Click here for recipe)

• Chicken Tikka Skewers 
This breezy dish is perfect for the grill or barbecue - and it's low-calorie too. Healthy.
Preparation time 20 mins : Cooking time 20 mins. Click here for Hand Diced Chicken 
(Click here for recipe) 

• Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce - by Sally Abé
Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce is a family favourite, but also makes a delicious starter. The creamy, slightly sweet Sauce in Sally's easy Chicken recipe perfectly complements the sticky, tangy Meat. 
Preparation/Cooking time 60 mins. Click here for Hand Diced Chicken 
(Click here for recipe) 

• Pork & Peach Kebabs with Little Gem Salad 
Great on the BBQ, but equally delicious on the grill - luckily! Easily doubled / halved. Healthy.
Preparation time 15 mins : Cooking time 10 -12 mins. Click here for Pork Tenderloin 
(Click here for recipe) 

• Barbecue Pork Belly and Langoustine with Baby Gem Salad - by Tony Fleming
This barbecue Pork skewer recipe is far from your standard summer Kebab. Each skewer is threaded with confit Pork Belly, fresh Langoustines and Vegetables before placing over hot coals and brushing with a sticky barbecue Sauce.
Preparation/ cooking time 60 mins - plus 24 hrs marinating and 4 hrs to confit. Click here for Belly of Pork Slices - and ask us to keep them in one piece
(Click here for recipe) 

But if you don’t want to - or haven’t the time to prepare your own Kebabs - then here are some Kebabs - ready to cook - we prepared earlier

• Free Range Flat Iron Steak Kebabs 
We skewer hand-cut Chunks of our Premium Quality, Free Range, Dry Aged, lean, expertly-trimmed Flat Iron Steak, interleaved with fresh Red Peppers and Courgette.    
Once assembled, the Flat Iron Steak chunks are perfectly complemented by an exquisite marinade of Paprika and a balance of Mixed Herb 
Cooking time 10-15 mins. Click here for Free Range Flat Iron Steak Kebabs 

• Free Range Lamb Fillet Kebabs 
We skewer hand cut Chunks of our Premium Quality, Free Range, Dry Aged, lean, expertly-trimmed Lamb Fillet, interleaved with fresh Red Peppers and Courgette 
Once assembled, the Lamb Fillet chunks are perfectly complemented by a delightful Greek fusion Marinade of Paprika, Thyme, Oregano and Rosemary. 
Cooking time 10-15 mins. Click here for Lamb Fillet Kebabs 

• Free Range Lamb Kebabs 
Skewered Chunks of Free Range, Dry-Aged, lean, expertly trimmed, Hand-diced Leg of Lamb interleaved with sweet Red and Yellow Peppers - ready for whichever Rub or Marinade you choose - or simply seasoned with Salt and Pepper
Cooking time 10- 15 mins. Click here for Lamb Kebabs 

• Free Range Steeped Lamb Kebabs 
Skewered Chunks of Free Range, Dry-Aged, lean, expertly trimmed, Hand-diced Leg of Lamb interleaved with Onion and Sweet Red and Yellow Peppers - and then steeped in a Greek style marinade seasoned with Cumin, Paprika, Oregano and Rosemary
Cooking time 10-15 mins. Click here for Steeped Lamb Kebabs 

• Free Range Lamb Koftas 
Using Hand-ground Premium Quality Lamb from much more expensive Cuts - our Free Range, Dry-Aged Lamb Mince Kofta Kebabs are packed full of Lamb flavour - and expertly blended with Currants, Cumin, Coriander, Ginger, Garlic, Salt and Pepper - for a real taste of the Mediterranean
Cooking time 10-15 mins. Click here for Lamb Koftas 

• Free Range Peri-Peri Wings 
Cut from Premium Quality, Free-Range slow grown Chickens - our Peri-Peri Wings are marinated on our own premises - in a delicious, moreish, sweet Chilli Sauce.
Cooking time 10-15 mins. Click here for Peri-Peri Wings 

• Free Range Chicken Skewers 
Cut only from Premium Quality Chickens - our ever-popular Chicken Skewers are whole, boneless Chicken Legs left with the skin-on for maximum flavour - and seasoned with Cajun Herbs.
Cooking time 20 mins. Click here for Chicken Skewers 

• Free Range Chicken and Chorizo Skewers 
Cut only from Premium Quality Chickens - are our Hand-diced Chunks of succulent, tender Free-Range Chicken Legs - squeezed between hunks of smoky spicy prime Pork Chorizo Sausage - and marinated in our Argentinian Fire marinade. All magically combine to make these special skewers a unique taste sensation.
Cooking time 20 mins. Click here for Chicken and Chorizo Skewers 

• Free Range Marinated Skewers 
Cut only from Premium Quality Chickens - our juicy Chicken Kebabs are boneless Hand-diced chunks of Chicken Thighs on Skewers - and then marinated, Available in a choice of spicy Argentinian Fire marinade with Jalapeno Chillies and Sweet Peppers - or sweet Japanese marinade with Sesame and Soy - or simply left plain without a marinade - for you to use your favourite seasonings or marinades
Cooking time 20 mins. Click here for Marinated Skewers 

• Free Range Pork Steak Kebabs 
Hand-cut Chunks of our Premium Quality, Free Range, expertly trimmed Pork Leg Steak - interleaved with fresh Red Peppers and Courgette - perfectly complemented by a marinade of big, strong, typically Mexican flavours such as Cayenne, Jalapeno Chillies, Coriander, Lemon, Tomato and Herbs - which makes this a real favourite!
Cooking time 20 mins. Click here for Pork Steak Kebabs 

So there you have it - killer Kebabs to prepare - or killer Kebabs to go!

Spring Lamb, Beef, Pork and Chicken Kebab recipe ideas using seasonal ingredients - just as nature intended

So whether you choose one of the recipes above - or the ready prepared Kebabs - or are just inspired to explore further Kebab recipes - we hope we have given you much food for thought for your next Kebab meal moments 

Give it a Click 

So why not give it a Click -  and experience a whole new way to enjoy Godfreys Seasonal Free Range Premium Quality Meats and Poultry by ordering from the comfort of your own home - or workplace - at a time that is convenient to you

We do the rest - be it if you would prefer delivery direct to your door Nationwide - or at our Click and Collect Points in Highbury or Finsbury Park.

Bon Appétit!

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