Turkish Food: Chicken Shish Kebab

Unless they’re vegetarian, it’s pretty difficult for food lovers to come to Turkey and leave without sampling good old tavuk şiş (chicken shish kebab).

Before we ever came to Turkey, we’d followed recipes for tavuk şiş where we would take our skewer and place a chunk of onion, a slice of pepper, a cube of chicken, a chunk of onion, a slice of pepper, a cube of…and so on before grilling it. That’s what all the TV chefs told us to do so we did it.

None of that nonsense here in Turkey!

A good tavuk şiş is cooked on a large barbecue known as an ocakbaşı. The skewer is crammed only with large chunks of chicken and the peppers, onions and tomatoes are grilled at the side. Just wonderful! So simple – but one of my favourite meals.

Chicken Shish Kebab

A classic chicken şiş – always so satisfying

For us, this shot is a photo of the perfect tavuk şiş and I was lucky enough to order this for dinner a few nights ago at Mozaik Bahçe Restaurant in Fethiye. Marinated, chargrilled chunks of chicken, slightly blackened in places but juicy and tender in the middle.

Grilled sweet red pepper complements the chicken – actually, grilled peppers complement anything for us. We love them!

Usually, şiş kebabs are served on a bed of pide or lavash bread – but this time, the bread was served on the side. Specialising in food from the Hatay region of Turkey, Mozaik Bahçe is well known for its spicy pepper sauce and, as you can see in the photo, the flatbread was covered in it and then heated.

I enjoyed getting messy with this, placing a chunk of chicken and a sprinkling of onion and parsley salad on each triangle of bread before rolling it up popping (stuffing) it into my mouth and savouring all the flavours.

And finally, a lot of restaurants geared towards tourists in the Fethiye area of Turkey will serve just about every meal with a side of rice and chips. We haven’t got much of a problem with this but when it’s a şiş kebab – just no! Bulgur wheat all the way! Any type of barbecued meat and bulgur are just best friends.

Must ask the people at Mozaik Bahçe how they cooked their bulgur wheat because we’ve never had it like this before…

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  1. Celine Blacow says

    Yakamoz also does a great chicken shish … and their bread (not pide) is just lovely, couldn’t get enough of it!

  2. @ Celine: We haven’t eaten at Yakamoz for a long, long time. No reason. Might have to give that a try though. 🙂

  3. cant wait to get out there for some tradition cuisine….5 days and counting

  4. Fresh Garden says

    Wonderful! Fantastic!
    My mouth is salivating…..

  5. Love chicken sish but prefer beef. Nice picture, only breakfast but I could eat one now!

  6. @ Tania: Hope you have a good time and enjoy all the fab food here.

    @ Fresh Garden: Mine too, when I was writing the post. 🙂

    @ Natalie: I always go for the chicken because there’s not a lot that can go wrong with it.

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