Israeli Spice Chicken

A good friend of mine went to Israel and brought me back a delicious rub for meats. This is my attempt at replicating it. It works on anything[ and everything! Make extra and store in a cool, dry place for up to six months.]

Total Time:
40 min
5 min
20 min
15 min

4 servings

  • Israeli Spice Rub:
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons (1 1/2 palmfuls) sweet paprika
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons (1 1/2 palmfuls) ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon (1/3 palmful) dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon (1/3 palmful) ground coriander
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (medium to hot in spice level)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons (1/2 palmful), coarse kosher salt
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (split, 8 pieces) 1 1/2 to 2 pounds
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • Warm pita or flat bread, for passing
  • Serving suggestions: Serve with tomato relish and zucchini (recipes follow). Piling the relish and the chicken in a warm pita is a fun way to combine the flavors and textures of the 2 recipes.
  • Orange and Yellow Tomato Relish:
  • 3 vine ripe or small round red tomatoes
  • 2 orange or yellow tomatoes
  • 1 small sweet onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup (2 handfuls) flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
  • Dressing:
  • 3 tablespoons (a couple of glugs) extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 ripe lemon, juiced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Kosher salt
  • Zucchini with Mint and Parsley:
  • 4 small, tender zucchini, about 1 1/2 pounds (look in organic section of produce counter)
  • 3 tablespoons (3 turns around the pan) extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup (half a bundle) chopped fresh mint
  • 1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves (a couple of handfuls)
  • Kosher salt and pepper
Israeli Spice Rub:

For the spice rub combine the paprika, cumin, oregano, coriander, crushed red pepper flakes, and kosher salt in a bowl. Place in a sealable jar, keep in a cool dry place for up to 6 months.

Place chicken in a shallow dish. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil to barely coat the meat. Rub chicken liberally with 4 tablespoons of the spice blend. Let stand 10 minutes.

Grill chicken 6 or 7 minutes on each side or until juices run clear.


Seed and chop the tomatoes and combine with onion and parsley in a shallow bowl. Combine oil, lemon juice, and spices in a small plastic container with a lid. Shake dressing to combine and pour over salad. Season salad with kosher salt and toss to combine well. Let stand 10 minutes and serve.

Yield: 4 servings

Zucchini with Mint and Parsley:

Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Cut zucchini into 1/4-inch slices. Add oil, garlic, and zucchini to pan and saute 7 to 8 minutes, turning occasionally with a firm shake of the skillet, until zucchini are just tender. Add mint, parsley, salt, and pepper, and cook 1 minute longer. Remove from heat and serve.

Yield: 4 servings

Pairs Well With

Rich, buttery white wine

  • Find easy pairings for your favorite recipes, Bobby's perfect picks and party ideas.
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