Shashlik: recipes, history and how to bake it right

shashlik on the grill

"If you don't eat meat, you can't do so with pudding. How can you get pudding if you don't eat meat? ” / Pink Floyd /

This article is definitely for meat lovers. But the website is delicious sošlika recipe

My very first fried shashlik this year was on June 8th. And now I can say that my shashlik season has started since that day. 

Put firewood on the grill; give fire; expect charcoal; put your favorite shashlik on a skewer or ladder and bake. Have you already smelled freshly baked shashlik? Me yes!

In this article, we will look at the history of shashlik; what meat is better to choose; how to bake it and of course shashlik recipes.

What is shashlik?

The word shashlik was created from the Crimean Tatar language, the Zaporozhye Cossacks - "şış" - translated to mean skewer, dagger, and entered Russian in the 18th century, from where it spread to English and other European languages. Also in Turkish, the word "şış" means skewer, and shashlik is literally translated as "meat on a spit". Various meats are used for shashlik: pork, sheep, beef or chicken. Nowadays, the main ingredient in shashlik, so to speak, is the marinade: vinegar, fruit juices, wine, mayonnaise, herbs and spices. Shashlik is usually baked over an open fire or on charcoal; pieces of meat pinned to a spit; or bake on a special grill or mangala, turning periodically. Served separately as a main course or with side dishes.

Shashlik was originally made from lamb, but today it is made from all kinds of meat - pork, beef, venison, depending on local preferences and religious traditions. It has become popular to fry shashlik along with vegetables such as peppers, onions, mushrooms and tomatoes. 

In Latvian cookbooks, shashlik recipes appear even before the Second World War - it was lamb shashlik, which had not been marinated before, fried with bacon, but served with fried potatoes.

However, shashlik gained widespread popularity in the 1970s during the Latvian SSR, when shashlik became commonplace. food Midsummer.

Although it is not uncommon for shashlik to be included in restaurant menus today, it is usually sold as a fast food in many places by street vendors.

Today, shashlik has become more than just “If”Meal, but the usual food for picnics, summer parties, parties, etc.

Shashlik in other cultures

Turkish kebab or shashlik

In Armenian shashlik is called "horovats", in Azerbaijan shashlik - "kebab"; "Kebab-shashlik" and Turkish shashlik.

People in the Mediterranean make shashlik in a completely different way. They smear the finished meat with a small amount of mint, pierced on wooden chopsticks, and fry on charcoal. In Asian countries, it is done differently: small pieces of meat are fried, mostly only lamb.

In Iranian cuisine, meat is usually in large pieces, while elsewhere the shape of medium-sized meat cubes is maintained, making it similar to a brochure. 

When I was in Turkey and ordered shashlik, I got soy meat pierced on a skewer that looked like sausage. I won't say the taste was bad, but it wasn't mine. 

The traditions of cooking and frying meat vary from country to country. It is influenced by many factors, such as climate, traditions, religious characteristics, and people's desires. Nowadays, there are many techniques and recipes for making delicious shashlik. Definitely you also have your favorite recipe and a way to bake the most delicious shashlik. Safe articles in the comments.

Shashlik meat

Let's start with the fact that the meat must definitely not be chemical or with an aroma or one that raises suspicions of spoilage of the meat. Visually fresher meat will be dry, shiny and even in color. The best shashlik and the meat of any food is the best of the farmers' farms, then you definitely know that the meat is not pumped with water and has been frozen. 

In general, it is not recommended to use frozen and thawed meat for shashlik, because when cooking it will not have a good, enjoyable structure and it could be mixed out. It is better to choose fresh, chilled meat with thoroughly drained blood. The pieces must be firm and even.

You must choose a piece of meat that is not tendonous and has no large part of lard.

If there is no other option, you can buy frozen meat once. To check that the meat has been frozen only once, take the piece in your hands and heat it with your fingers; in places where heat has reached, the meat must become darker, if not, the meat must be frozen and thawed several times. 

As I mentioned at the beginning, fresh young lamb is used to make real classic shashlik. Such is rare today. In the store, choose a piece of lamb that is bright red. The ruby ​​tone of the lamb indicates that it is not the first freshness. After frying the shashlik, it is recommended to condemn it immediately, as it cools down quickly and becomes more difficult sakožams.

Shashlik meat selection

The most popular type of shashlik is from pork. This meat is available in almost every grocery store, and the choice is really wide. It is recommended to choose a light pink meat with a small layer of fat.

Fresh pork neck chop, boneless shoulder piece, as well as cuts at the back will be suitable for shashlik. Of course, you can also buy pure fillet, which is the most expensive part of the pork. However, the meat must also have a small piece of lard to make the shashlik juicy, no dry.

One of the most economical and now very popular shashlik is chicken. The most suitable pieces will be thighs and hams. It is used by many, because shashlik bakes quickly and also marinates. As well as easier to digest. But now I stick to classic values, like pork shashlik. 

Beef is the most unsuitable for making shashlik, because it is the hardest and most tender. If no meat other than beef is available, try to choose the cut of the youngest possible piece of meat and the lightest possible color. If you have to choose shashlik for cooking, of all the available types of beef, the best option will be veal.

How to properly fry shashlik

In my opinion, one of the main components of the whole process in baking shashlik is baking. When everyone is around the campfire or grill, watch their pieces, comment on whether they are / are not ready. 

When the meat is purchased, it must cut off all the excess - large tendons and skin. Cut the shashlik pieces into small cubes, but not too small, because the meat will shrink during frying. It must be remembered that the meat must be cut against the muscle veins so that it absorbs the marinade and is softer and easier to cut and digest when frying.

The best firewood for baking is from deciduous trees - birch and oak. Coniferous firewood should be avoided, it can forgive the meat of unwanted bitterness. And you should not use fuel or dry alcohol. But when used, remember that these liquids are allowed to soak in and burn out so that the food does not have a chemical taste. 

The distance from the coals to the meat should be 10-15 cm. shashlik should be trimmed every 5-7 minutes. It takes up to 25 minutes to bake a whole shashlik. It all depends on the choice and thickness of the meat. 

Coal in the process of preparation, it is not recommended to water. Flammable flames indicate that the temperature of the coal is too high or that fat is dripping onto them. In both cases, it is better to remove the shashlik from the grill and let the fire go out on its own. Sprinkling coal with water changes the temperature too quickly and the ashes end up on the meat.

How do you know when the meat is ready?

The most basic way is to remove one large piece off the fire. Cut in half, the meat should be bloodless but juicy. And, of course, taste, if you are satisfied with the texture, then you can take off and serve on table.

Shashlik recipes


We definitely all have our favorite shashlik marinade recipe. Others like mayonnaise, others vinegar. Just like one is fond of pork or chicken shashlik. Below I offer different types of recipes. Try one of them. Enjoy your meal!

Come on in and there you will also find other great recipes for every taste!