Shish kebab

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Shish kebab with "şehriyeli pilav" (orzo pilaf), onions with sumac, a grilled pepper, a slice of tomato (also grilled) and rucula leaves.

Shish kebab (Armenian: խորոված; Turkish: şiş kebap; Persian/Mazandarani: شیش کباب, šiš kabāb) is a popular meal of skewered and grilled cubes of meat.[1] It is similar to a dish called shashlik, which is found in the Caucasus region.[2]

It is generally made of lamb (kuzu şiş)[3] but there are also versions with beef or veal (dana şiş), swordfish (kılıç şiş)[4] and chicken meat (tavuk şiş or şiş tavuk). In Turkey, shish kebab and the vegetables served with it are grilled separately, normally not on the same skewer.[5]

While shish kebabs are sometimes referred to in English as simply kebabs, that term can also refer to a wide variety of different grilled meat dishes.


Shish kebab is an English rendering of Turkish: şiş (sword or skewer) and Turkish: kebap (roasted meat dish).[6]

The word kebab came to English in the late 17th century, from the Arabic: كَبَاب‎ (kabāb), partly through Urdu, Persian and Turkish.[7] However, the earliest known use of shish kebab in English is 1914, from the novel Our Mr. Wrenn, in a passage describing a meal in an Armenian restaurant in New York City.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ John Ayto (18 October 2012). The Diner's Dictionary: Word Origins of Food and Drink. OUP Oxford. pp. 192–. ISBN 978-0-19-964024-9. 
  2. ^ Davidson, Allen, "The Oxford Companion to Food", p.442.
  3. ^ Ozcan Ozan (13 December 2013). The Sultan's Kitchen: A Turkish Cookbook. Tuttle Publishing. pp. 146–. ISBN 978-1-4629-0639-0. 
  4. ^ Mimi Sheraton (13 January 2015). 1,000 Foods To Eat Before You Die: A Food Lover's Life List. Workman Publishing Company. pp. 1090–. ISBN 978-0-7611-8306-8. 
  5. ^ Steven Raichlen (28 May 2008). The Barbecue! Bible 10th Anniversary Edition. Workman Publishing Company. pp. 214–. ISBN 978-0-7611-5957-5. 
  6. ^ a b "shish kebab". Oxford English Dictionary (2nd ed.). Oxford University Press. 1989. 
  7. ^ "kebab - definition of kebab in English". Oxford Dictionaries. Oxford University Press. Retrieved August 3, 2017.