An earthy, summery, sweet, barbequey, Middle-Eastern number.
Sumac is a plant common in North Africa and the Middle East, on which the fruit forms dense clusters of reddish ‘drupes’ called sumac ‘bobs’. The drupes are dried to make the tangy, lemony spice that we know as sumac. It is one of those ingredients that sounds more difficult to source than it actually is – you can find sumac humbly located in the spice section of most regular supermarkets these days!
BBQ Sumac Chicken With Caramelised Orange and Beetroot Salad
The sumac marinade would work well with seafood like fish and prawns, or even tofu, tempeh and fleshy vege like eggplant and mushrooms.
3/4 cup natural yoghurt
1/4 tsp salt
1 tablespoon sumac
4 chicken thighs
Mix together yoghurt, sumac and salt. In a large flat baking dish add chicken and pour over yoghurt. Mix well to coat chicken in marinade. Cover and refridgerate for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight.
Heat a BBQ or frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook on each side for about 5 minutes, or until just cooked through.
Caramelised Orange & Beetroot Salad
Beetroot and orange is a classic combo – earthy, zesty, crunchy, juicy and colourful. Here it’s teamed with some mint for freshness and caramelised oranges for sweetness.
A mandolin is the best tool for the job in getting the beetroot thin enough. You could also use a cheese slicer or potato peeler. It is very easy to take the top off your fingers with mandolins, so take heed that it’s only beetroot blood on the chopping board and not your own.
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons finely sliced mint
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 teaspoon sherry vinegar
black pepper and sea salt
Heat oven to 200*c. Wrap beetroot in foil and roast for 40 minutes, until soft but still firm. When cool enough to handle, cut into small wedges or chunks.
Heat a frying pan. Add orange slices. Sprinkle over sugar.
In a bowl, combine beetroot, orange segments. Mix together olive oil and sherry vinegar, season with salt and pepper to taste. Toss through beetroot mixture to coat and sprinkle over mint to serve.
I like to serve this with a little sauce of yoghurt mixed with tahini, cayenne pepper (or lemon juice) and salt.