Chicken Side Dish

Joojeh Kabab – Chicken Drumettes Kabab

Dear Friends,

We are one week away from the publication of my cookbook Bottom of the Pot – Persian Recipes and Stories (Flatiron Books)! And I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than with a platter of Joojeh Kabab – Chicken Drumettes Kabab from my book.

The summer sun is still gracing us with her warmth and light.  And a charcoal grill and late summer barbeque is always a good idea. There will be more words and news to share in the weeks to come. For now, I want to take a moment to thank you all for all your support and encouragement throughout this book journey. It has meant the world to me. Thank you to all who have pre-ordered the book. And if you haven’t, it’s not too late – head right here to pre-order.

I look forward to hearing and seeing what you will all be making from the book and please share your photos with #bottomofthepotthecookbook.


Joojeh Kabab – Chicken Drumettes Kabab

From Bottom of the Pot – Persian Recipes and Stories Flatiron Books 2018.

Juicy and tender on the inside and charred and smoky on the outside, dripping with saffron and spiked with lime juice, Joojeh Kabab is the stuff of summertime barbecue dreams. The drumettes (which look like tiny drumsticks, also referred to as wings) are served over a layer of lavash bread. The bread happily soaks up all the smoky, sweet joojeh juices and sends all hands reaching in to tear away at both the succulent kabab and the bread. Long, flat metal skewers (can be purchased online or at Iranian markets) come in handy here so the drumettes don’t twist and turn while grilling; otherwise, you can use double skewers. These kababs really need an overnight marinade, so plan ahead. Serve with rice and a heaping basket of fresh green herbs.

Serves 6

  • 4 pounds chicken drumettes
  • 1 large yellow onion, sliced into half-moons
  • 1 ¼ cups plain yogurt
  • ½ cup lime juice
  • 5 cloves garlic, crushed to a paste
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon ground saffron steeped in 2 tablespoons hot water
  • 4 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper

For The Baste:

  • 4 tablespoons clarified butter or unsalted butter or olive oil
  • juice of 1 small lime
  • kosher salt
  • ground black pepper
  • 6 small tomatoes
  • sumac, for serving
  • lavash bread, for serving

Place the drumettes and the onion slices in a large container or in a large re-sealable plastic bag. In a medium bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients and pour over the chicken. Turn the chicken a few times to coat well in the marinade. Cover the container or seal the bag and marinate in the fridge for 24 to 48 hours. Turn the chicken pieces around a few times while marinating.

Remove the chicken from the marinade and skewer. This can get messy and fun so have a few paper towels on hand. Skewer the tomatoes separately.

In a small pot, melt the butter or heat the oil for the baste. Stir in the lime juice and season with salt and pepper. Heat a hot grill and grill the chicken and the tomatoes, turning and basting the drumettes, until the chicken is cooked through and charred in parts on the outside, about 15 minutes. Place the chicken and grilled tomatoes on the lavash bread, the kabab juices will soak into the bread. Sprinkle sumac on the chicken and tomatoes or set aside a small bowl for everyone to sprinkle for themselves.

Photo: Eric Wolfinger

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