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Gyros: A Greek Classic

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Gyro with Sangria

Gyro with Sangria

Kevin D Weeks

Some 30 years ago I stepped into a taverna in Athens, Greece and was captivated by a vertical spit of meat rotating slowly in front of a multiple-level charcoal brasier. I watched as the fellow behind the counter sliced off pieces of meat, piled it on a round of flat bread, then slathered it with some kind of sauce, some tomato, chopped onion, and rolled it up. This I had to try, and so I had my first gyro along with a tumbler of retsina. It was a major culinary event in my life, and I immediately ordered a second one. (Larger image.) Makes 4.

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Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Ingredients:

  • Meat Mixture:
  • 1 lb. ground lamb (or beef)
  • 1/4 cup minced red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • Sandwich:
  • 4 rounds of flat bread or pita.
  • lettuce
  • tomato; sliced
  • Tzatziki Sauce

Preparation:

Meat mixture
1. Thoroughly combine all ingredients in a bowl.

2. Divide into four equal portions and shape into oblong patties about 3" wide, 6" long, 1/2" thick. Refrigerate for an hour.

Sandwich
3. Grill patties over a hot fire for 3 - 4 minutes per side.

4. Spread tzatziki sauce down the center of a flat bread round, add a lettuce leaf, add some diced tomato. Add the patty, fold the bread over the lamb, and enjoy.

Note: wrapping in foil helps hold things together while you eat it.

Readers Respond: Name that sandwich...
Sandwiches, in their various forms, are popular around the world whether it's a Gyro in Greece, a Muffaletta in New Orleans, or a Bahn Mi in Vietnam. What's your favorite sandwich and where's it from? Click here to share your favorite.

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