Impress your best girlfriends or special someone with this delicious & easy gourmet appy.

What’s easy to make, leaves your mouth watering for more and has your guests begging you for the recipe?

The answer: meat on a stick.

Whether you refer to them as kebabs, satays, or skewers, they can all pretty much be summed up as “meat on a stick”. With this trio of recipes I’ve incorporated bold flavours, spice and variety that will surely do some damage to your taste buds.
There are a variety of elements to keep in mind when preparing these skewers. They are great to prepare all year round, and not just during grilling season. Secondly, try to source out bamboo skewers and remember to soak them in water overnight or for at least a few hours. And finally, have fun with the flavour combinations and ingredients; feel free to use firm tofu, swordfish and even ground meats as replacements.

This recipe is all about packing some serious punch into just a few bites. A selection of “meat on a sticks” are great for parties, entertaining and are a fabulous start to any meal. To complete the wow factor, once cooked, stand the skewers straight up in a wide bowl or vase full of sugar or salt.

Garam Masala & Mustard Seed Paneer Skewers

Ingredient:

1 package paneer cheese, large diced

3 tbsp. garam masala

1 tsp. black mustard seeds

1 tsp. yellow mustard seeds

1 tbsp. cilantro, chopped

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 tsp. vegetable oil

1 lime, juice & zest

salt

pepper

Method:

1) Heat a heavy bottom frying pan over medium heat. Season the diced paneer with salt & pepper and sear paneer on all sides until golden brown.

2) When the paneer is almost done add to the pan the black & yellow mustard seeds and turn the heat off.

3) Remove paneer to a bowl and while still warm add the olive oil, cilantro, lime juice & lime zest.

4) Place 3-4 cubes of paneer each on a skewer and serve warm.

Tandoori Chicken Skewers

Ingredients:

½ pound chicken thigh, boneless & skinless

2 tbsp. tandoori paste

1 tbsp. yogurt

1 tbsp. cilantro, chopped

1 garlic clove, minced

1 small piece ginger, minced

salt

pepper

Method:

1) Clean & trim chicken making sure to dice the chicken evenly and making sure to remove all fat.

2) In a bowl combine all of the ingredients for the chicken marinade: tandoori paste, yogurt, cilantro, garlic, ginger, salt & pepper.

3) Mix the chicken with the marinade and let the flavours come together from 2-6 hours.

4) Skewer 3-4 pieces of chicken onto the skewers, and season with salt & pepper.

5) Cook the chicken under the broiler in an oven for 8 minutes, or on an outdoor grill over medium heat for 5-7 minutes.

Coconut Crusted Prawns with Curry Mayo

Ingredients:
6 medium sized prawns, peeled & deveined

salt

pepper

½ cup flour

1 egg, beaten

½ cup shredded coconut

½ cup bread crumbs

2 cup vegetable oil for frying

½ cup japanese mayo

1 tsp. garam masala

1 tsp. turmeric

Method:
1) Heat the frying oil in a small pot over medium to high heat.

2) Before breading the prawns make sure the prawns are nice and dry.

3) Season the prawns with salt & pepper and place into the flour, then into the egg and then into the breadcrumb & shredded coconut mixture.

4) Place the prawns into the oil and only cook a few prawns at a time as to not cool down the temperature. Cook prawns for 3-4 minutes until golden brown.

5) To make the curry mayonnaise just mix together the mayo, turmeric & garam masala.

Gurj Dhaliwal is a chef and caterer based in Vancouver, B.C. Winner of the Food Network's Superstar Chef Challenge in 2007, Gurj is also a Granville Island culinary tour guide and an avid food blogger. He can be contacted through email at info@gdgourmet.com