Pork Skewers Five Ways

BY BILL ST. JOHN

Butchers or home cooks typically compose pork skewers (or “kebabs” or “kebobs” as they also may be called [although I always have shunned the latter because it’s too much voodoo on my brother, Robert]) from the loin cuts of pork. You might use tenderloin, although as is the case with tenderloin, any pork proposition with it is a gamble: with virtually no fat to guard against overcooking and drying out, “regular” loin cuts such as sirloin call merit to themselves. 

Here are five ways to prepare pork kebabs. Grill any of these on very hot coals for 10-15 minutes, turning once or twice, or until the pork pieces are well browned all over but also being careful to not overcook the meat.

Way 1: Carne Asada
Marczyk’s Fine Foods pork skewers ($8.99/lb, F&F $6.99/lb) already come one of two ways; dusted with the butcher market’s carne asada rub, and Way 2, to follow. Cook these carne asada skewers as-is.

Way 2: Pineappled and Red-Onioned
Coining past participles runs the risk of being misunderstood, but pretty sure you’ll fathom this. Cook these as-is, perhaps with some grindings of black pepper and healthy pinches of salt.

Way 3: Marinated
Deconstruct a few of your Marczyk’s pineapple-and-red onion skewers, separate away the meat, and marinate the pork pieces for 30 minutes (or up to 4 hours) in a well-combined mix of 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, 2 minced cloves garlic, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, and generous grindings or shakes of kosher salt and black pepper. Remove the pork pieces and toss the pineapple and onion pieces in the marinade. Then re-thread the skewers, allocating all pieces evenly.

Way 4: Greek
Deconstruct a few of your Marczyk’s pineapple-and-red onion skewers, separate away the meat, reserve the pineapple for another use, and marinate the pork pieces for 1 hour in a well-combined mix of 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (Greek, if you have it), 1 minced clove garlic, 2 teaspoons dried crushed Mediterranean or Greek oregano, and generous grindings or shakes of kosher salt and black pepper. Remove the pork pieces and toss the onion pieces in the marinade, while adding chunks of zucchini and large grape tomatoes, if you wish. Then re-thread the skewers, allocating all pieces evenly.

Way 5: Vietnamese
Deconstruct a few of your Marczyk’s pineapple-and-red onion skewers, separate away the meat, and marinate the pork pieces for 30 minutes (or up to 4 hours) in a well-combined mix of 1 teaspoon sesame oil, 1 teaspoon neutral vegetable oil, 2 minced cloves garlic, 2 4-inch sections of pale lemongrass, heartily crushed, 1 tablespoon fish sauce, 1 tablespoon oyster sauce, 2 tablespoons sugar, and generous grindings or shakes of kosher salt and black pepper. Remove the pork pieces and toss the pineapple and onion pieces in the marinade. Then re-thread the skewers, allocating all pieces evenly.