Editor's note: To give readers an opportunity to sample global foods that aren’t easy to find in the Lowcountry, we’ve invited 13 talented home cooks from various cooking traditions to join our new "Kitchen Cabinet." Each member will contribute four recipes over the coming year, providing some sense of the seasonal aspects of the showcased cuisines.
Summertime means figs in the Lowcountry: If you don’t have a fig tree in your backyard, a friend or neighbor almost surely does. Cooked quickly in butter, those seasonal gems frame this classic Afghan recipe from Fauzia Garner, who recently opened a permanent location of her longstanding food truck, Fauzia’s Kitchen, at 5 Alliance Drive in Goose Creek.
As with all of the recipes in the Kitchen Cabinet series, this recipe features ingredients available in a typical American supermarket. But the preparation reflects Afghan tastes: For example, these kabobs call for more oil and more time on the grill than an American-born home cook might anticipate.
But as Helen Saberi writes in "Afghan Food & Cookery: Noshe Djan," “Afghan cooks are not accustomed to using exact measures. I give such measures, without which many of the recipes would be puzzling to non-Afghans, but I don’t mean them to be taken too literally. Especially with ingredients like salt, pepper and cooking oil, amounts can be changed to suit individual tastes.”
Indeed, the first version of this recipe that Garner supplied didn’t have any measurements. In other words, it’s your kebab supper. Have fun with it (and consider serving it with basmati rice or nan, an Afghan flatbread.)
— Hanna Raskin