Skewered Chicken Spirals on a Bed of Garlic Couscous

Recently I read a darling recipe for Italian Chicken Sausage and Israeli Couscous. It is definitely on my “gotta try this” list. Everything cooks up in a single pan – always a plus, and I love couscous. Coleen over at Leen Cuisine always is a delight to read, and her recipes are beautiful. Her one-pan wonder is no exception (https://leencuisine.com/2017/08/06/italian-chicken-sausage-with-israeli-couscous/)

Reading Coleen’s post got me to thinking about my own favorite chicken with couscous. It’s a delicious recipe that I had shared with you back in October 2014. This is an updated recipe, as it includes the recipe for the Garlic Couscous. Sure, you could serve this spirals on a bed of rice or risotto or all on their own. I just like the added exotic appeal of Couscous.

Let me know what you all think – and please check out Coleen’s recipe, too.

Skewered Chicken Spirals with Fresh Basil
4 Chicken Breasts, boneless, skinless, pounded thin
1 Garlic Clove, crushed
2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
4 Hickory-Smoked Bacon Slices
Large handful Fresh Basil Leaves
Kitchen twine, enough to hold rolled chicken together
Oil for brushing
Salt & Pepper to Taste
Bamboo Skewers, soaked for 30 minutes in water

For Serving: A Bed of Garlic Couscous (recipe below)

Soak Wooden Cocktail or Bamboo Skewers in water for 30 minutes. Set aside until ready to use.

Spread out a piece of chicken between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound thin. Repeat with remaining chicken.

01 Pound Breast Thin

On a large work space, lay out chicken. Pat dry and season with salt and pepper. Mix together garlic and tomato paste, spread a layer of paste on each piece of chicken. Lay a slice of bacon on top of paste, then scatter basil leaves. 

03 Spread Tomato Paste, add bacon & basil

Roll tightly to form a spiral, rolling in the opposite direction as the bacon strip. Beginning at the center and working out, secure roll with kitchen twine in 1-inch intervals. Trim the ends so that the chicken will be somewhat uniform in shape and thickness.

05 Roll and Tie

Starting at one end of rolled, about ¾ of an inch from the very end, with the breast perpendicular to the skewer, thread bamboo skewer through chicken to hold spiral shape. Using a sharp knife, slice chicken spiral from roll at the twine; and then cut away twine. Give the skewered spiral a quarter turn, so that the cut side is up. Re-position roll and repeat until entire breast has been threaded onto skewer, cutting away twine as you go. This will make the rolled chicken hold its shape better and will make threading it easier. You should end up with four or five spiral pieces of chicken on each skewer.

07 Place on skewers

Heat broiler element. Lay chicken on a broiler pan and brush with oil. Place chicken under broiler and cook until chicken is cooked through, about 15-20 minutes, turning once midway through.

P1020128

To Serve: Create a bed of couscous on an oval serving platter. Top with chicken spirals and serve. Great with Smokey Pan Seared Asparagus or even a bright and refreshing Asparagus and Tomato Salad with a Honey-Balsamic Vinaigrette.

Garlic Couscous
1-2 Garlic Cloves, minced
Butter, as needed
1 ¼ Cup Chicken Stock
1 Cup Pearl Couscous
2 Teaspoons Butter
1 ½ Teaspoon Parsley Flakes

Peel and mince garlic. Set aside until ready to use.

Bring the stock to a boil. While waiting, sauté the garlic.

Heat a dab of butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic, and sauté until garlic is tender and just beginning to brown, 2-3 minutes.

To boiling stock, add 2 teaspoons butter, garlic, parsley and couscous. Cover and let simmer for about 10 minutes, until the liquid has been absorbed.

Remove from heat. Let sit a few more minutes for flavors to merge together. Remove cover and fluff before serving.

4 thoughts on “Skewered Chicken Spirals on a Bed of Garlic Couscous

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