These flavorful pork skewers are part of the intriguing Moorish culinary legacy in Spain. Of course, the Moors were Muslim and did not eat pork, but Christian Spaniards borrowed the delicious North African spice combination traditionally used on lamb kebabs and applied it to their beloved meat. The prep time for this dish is minimal, but the pork must be rubbed with the spice mixture several hours before grilling, so don’t forget to plan ahead.
Moorish-Spiced Pork Kebabs
- 1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) olive oil
- 3 Tbs. ground cumin
- 2 Tbs. ground coriander
- 1 Tbs. pimentón dulce (sweet Spanish smoked pepper)
- 1 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp. ground turmeric
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 lb. (1 kg) pork loin, cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) cubes
- 2 Tbs. minced garlic
- 1/4 cup (1/3 oz./10 g) chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) fresh lemon juice
- Lemon wedges for serving
1. In a small fry pan, combine the olive oil, cumin, coriander, pimentón, cayenne, turmeric, oregano, 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. black pepper. Place over low heat until warmed through and fragrant, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
2. Place the pork pieces in a bowl and rub with the spice mixture. Add the garlic, parsley and lemon juice and toss well. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
3. The next day, position a rack 4 to 6 inches (10 to 15 cm) below the heat source and turn on the broiler, or prepare a hot fire in a charcoal grill or preheat a gas grill on high. Thread the meat onto skewers and sprinkle with salt.
4. Place on a broiler pan or the grill rack and broil or grill, turning once, until just cooked through, about 4 minutes on each side. Transfer to a platter and serve with lemon wedges. Serves 8.
Find more than 100 recipes for the simple, unassuming, and satisfying food of the Spanish countryside in Rustic Spanish, by Paul Richardson.