A skewer is a thin metal or wood stick used to hold pieces of food together. The word may sometimes be used as a metonym, to refer to the entire food item served on a skewer, as in “chicken skewers”. Skewers are used while grilling or roasting meats and fish, and in other culinary applications.
In English, brochette is a borrowing of the French word for the skewer. In cookery, en brochette means ‘on a skewer’, and describes the form of a dish or the method of cooking and serving pieces of food, especially grilled meat or seafood, on skewers; for example “lamb cubes en brochette”. Skewers are often used in a variety of kebab dishes.
Dishes, other than kebabs, prepared with skewers include American city chicken and corn dog, Brazilian churrasco, indigenous Peruvian anticucho, Italian arrosticini, Japanese kushiyaki and kushikatsu, Korean jeok and kkochi, Nepali sekuwa, Portuguese espetada, Vietnamese nem nướng and chạo tôm.
Appetizers and hors d’oeuvres may often be skewered together with small sticks or toothpicks; the Spanish pincho is named after such a skewer.Small, often decorative, skewers of glass, metal, wood or bamboo known as “olive picks” or “cocktail sticks” are used for garnishes on cocktails and other alcoholic beverages. Many types of snack food, such as candy apples, banana cue, ginanggang, elote, and tanghulu, are sold and served “on a stick” or skewer, especially at outdoor markets, fairs, and sidewalk or roadside stands around the world.
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