Cook Date: September 6, 2020
Back at the end of June I blogged about a problem with my kabob rack when I cooked some pork skewers; the Weber elevations rack I love doesn’t fit on my Mak 2 Star grill. So, I bought a the Steven Raichlen SR8816 Stainless Steel Kabob Rack. This was my first time using it; let’s see how things went.
But first, I love this backlit picture of our maple tree seeds.
We’ve made the same style pork skewers a few times now and wanted to try something different. I read the ingredients of possible recipes out loud to Carla; “that’s the one!” she said. The marinade included soy sauce and oyster sauce. Not only did it sound good, we had almost a full bottle of oyster sauce in the fridge.
Measure, grind, and press.
That’s a lot of garlic – 2 Tablespoons. Whisk it all together.
I had two pork loins that weighed in at just under two pounds. Normally, I cube my pork into ½ to 1-inch pieces. This recipe calls for much larger pieces. I divided each pork loin in half; those bits in half; then those bits in half yielding 8 2-inch skewers. Interesting.
Pork and marinade went into a 1 gallon zip lock back. After mushing things together, it all went into the fridge for about 6 hours.
Time to start on the dipping sauce. Like the marinade it had a small but strong set of ingredients.
One-half cup of lime juice and ¼ cup fish sauce.
That turned out to be way too much fish sauce – on top of the fact that the Red Boat brand is pretty strong to begin with.
Later in the afternoon, my youngest grandson helped me skewer the vegetables.
Be aware that if you have help from a 4-year old not only do you need to be careful with the skewers – I started them and he slid them into place – you have to be patient. We did a lot of teeny-meeny-miney-mo to determine what piece of vegetable/fruit to put on next. But it was definitely time well spent.
Skewer them up an stash in the fridge until ready to cook.
In the picture above you can see the new rack; but the skewers are my old ¼-inch Weber skewers. The new skewers were much too wide; as wide of most of the cherry tomatoes from Carla’s garden.
Then I started some coconut Jasmine rice – this is SO good:
- 1 full cup (not rice cooker cup) of Jasmine rice, thoroughly rinsed
- ½ can full fat coconut milk
- ¾ cup water
- 1 teaspoon unsweetened coconut flakes
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon granulated sugar [Optional; I don’t use it]
Mix it all together and cook in the rice cooker.
Later I fired up the grill and skewered the pork
These are the skewers that came with the new kabob rack. They definitely worked well with these large hunks of pork but you can see how much wider they are than the Weber skewers. The dipping sauce is on the bowl to the right. Can I say I love that roasting pan? I bought it a few year ago, but I’ve never actually cooked anything in it because I don’t want it to get all discolored.
Everything couldn’t go on the grill at the same time so the veggies go first.
Then the meat.
The V-shape rack design is supposed to make it easy to rotate the skewers in increments – that was the main reason I got this set up. Unfortunately, if your skewers are not perfectly balanced, they tend to flip back to the other side when you adjust. .You can see how the skewer on the far right rotated back after I tried to turn them. Not good.
These cooked in about 6 minutes with a flip at 3 minutes. But don’t cook to time! I used my Thermapen to make sure it was the right temp. The metal skewers help cook the meat from the inside.
Dinner was served,
This will easily feed 4 people (we’ll have leftovers tonight). Each serving is 1 skewer of meat (about ¼ pound) and 1½ skewers of vegetables.
There are some valuable takeaways but overall this is not ready for prime time. I like using the larger cubes of pork; the 2-inch cubes hold up against overcooking and drying out the meat. The marinade was nice but not complex enough; it laced a touch of brightness. The original recipe calls for including some chopped cilantro; maybe that would have made the difference. The dipping sauce was a no go; way, way too strong. The lime and fish sauce promised a nice taste but there is way, WAY too much fish sauce. I think 1 tablespoon could have done the job.
The kabob rack was a disappointment because some of the skewers were unbalanced and would not successfully flip to the other side of the “V”. I have my eye on another system that promises the ability to lock the skewers into position as they rotate.