If you’ve never tried Ethiopia’s signature spice blend berbere, these vibrant chicken skewers get deep flavor from it. Made with dried alliums, chilies and warm spices, berbere features complex flavor and a rich, earthy aroma. Look for it in spice shops or well-stocked grocery stores.
If you can’t find berbere, or don’t feel like purchasing another spice to add to your growing collection, use a mixture of ground coriander and smoked paprika (which is what we did). In this recipe from Milk Street, they combine berbere with softened butter, lime juice and honey, making a spicy-sweet seasoning mix ideal for clinging to the chicken before cooking.
We served our skewers with a Lemon and Herb Farro side dish.
Berbere-Spiced Chicken Skewers
- 4 Tbsp. salted butter, room temperature
- 2 Tbsp. berbere OR 1 Tbsp. ground coriander plus 1 Tbsp. smoked paprika
- 2 Tbsp. honey, plus more to serve
- 1 Tbsp. grated lime zest, plus 2 Tbsp. lime juice, plus lime wedges to serve
- Kosher salt and ground black pepper
- 1½ lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and cut into 1½-inch pieces
- 2 medium red OR orange OR yellow bell peppers OR a combination, stemmed, seeded and cut into 1½-inch pieces
- Set a wire rack in a broiler-safe rimmed baking sheet and mist with cooking spray.
- In a large bowl, mix the butter, berbere, honey, lime zest and juice, 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper. Measure 2 tablespoons of the mixture into a small bowl; set aside for brushing.
- Add the chicken and peppers to the bowl with the remaining berbere mixture and mix with your hands to coat.
- Thread the chicken, alternating with the peppers, onto four 12-inch metal skewers. Place the skewers on the prepared rack, spacing them evenly. Let stand at room temperature while the broiler heats.
- Heat the broiler with a rack about 6 inches from the element. Broil the skewers until lightly charred, 6 to 7 minutes. Remove from the oven, flip and broil until charred on the second sides, another 6 to 7 minutes.
- Transfer to a serving platter, brush with the reserved butter mixture and drizzle with additional honey. Serve with lime wedges.
Original recipe from Milk Street