Yogurt-Spiced Chicken and Preserved Lemon Skewers

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Prep Time: 70 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4

If you can’t find preserved lemons in the specialty foods aisle of your grocery store and don’t have time to make your own, simply roast slices of raw lemons. For this recipe you will need 8 to 10 wooden skewers, each 7 inches (18 cm) or longer. Soak them in water for at least an hour to prevent them from catching fire on the grill.


  • 3/4 cup (6 oz./185 g) plain whole-milk yogurt
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. saffron threads
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 lb. (750 g) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 1/2 lb. (750 g) asparagus, ends trimmed
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 preserved lemons, drained, preserving liquid reserved


In a large, nonreactive bowl, stir together the yogurt, cumin, turmeric, paprika, saffron, cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper.

Cut the chicken into 1 1/2-inch (4-cm) cubes. Add the chicken to the bowl and toss to coat well. Cover and let marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours.

Preheat an oven to 375°F (190°C). Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.

In a large bowl, toss the asparagus with the olive oil and the reserved preserved lemon liquid (about 1 Tbs.). Set aside. Cut the lemons into 1-inch (2.5-cm) pieces.

Drain the skewers and thread them with chicken and lemons. Place the skewers in a single layer on half of the baking sheet. Bake until the chicken is opaque throughout, about 15 minutes. Using tongs, flip the skewers over. Spread the asparagus in a single layer next to the skewers on the baking sheet. Cook until the chicken is roasted throughout and the asparagus is fork-tender, about 12 minutes. Serve immediately. Serves 4.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma School Night, by Kate McMillan (Weldon Owen, 2015)

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