Paul McCauslandComment

Chicken Gyro Kebab

Paul McCauslandComment
Chicken Gyro Kebab

The mighty kebab has a stereotypical opinion in the UK. Mainly because they are usually consumed after a copious amount of alcohol when dietary motivation is out the window. However, the kebab is much more than the strips of 'doner' meat synonymous with kicking out time.

The Gyro style kebab derives from Greece and ate at all times of the day. Traditionally made from pork or chicken and cooked on a rotisserie which isn't exactly feasible for home cooking. A quick alternative is to simply skewer your meat of choice and cook hot and fast on the grill. To serve, pitta bread works well but I prefer a thin naan bread with a spicy yoghurt based sauce rather than a cooling tzatziki but it's entirely up to personal preference, however, don't forget the fries!

SWANKINGREDIENTS

Serves 2

Chicken Marinade

  • Chicken Thighs 6
  • Cayenne Pepper 1 Teaspoon
  • Smoked Paprika 1 Teaspoon
  • Garlic Powder 1 Teaspoon 
  • Onion Powder 1 Teaspoon
  • Sumac 1 Teaspoon
  • Salt 1 Teaspoon
  • Black Pepper 1 Teaspoon
  • Olive oil 5 Tablespoons
  • Water 5 Tablespoons
  • Juice of 1 lemon

Yoghurt Sauce

  • Natural Yoghurt 1 small pot
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Scotch Bonnet Chilli (optional) 1
  • Garlic 1 Clove
  • Mayonnaise 1 Tablespoon

Tomato and Onion Garnish

  • Baby Tomatoes Dozen
  • Red Onion 1 
  • Dried Mint 1 Teaspoon
  • Apple Cider Vinegar 3 Tablespoons
  • Salt 1 Teaspoon

To Serve

  • French fries
  • Pitta or Naan Bread
  • Salad Leaves
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METHOD

1. The first step to making these awesome kebabs is to prepare the chicken. You can use any cut but my preference is thighs. They have a higher fat content than breast meaning they don't dry out as quickly when cooking compared to breast meat. I bought bone in, skin on thighs which needed the bone removed before marinating. I also kept a bit of skin on which turned crispy on the grill. Once the bone has been removed cut the chicken into one-inch cubes and add the marinade ingredients. The key ingredient to the marinade is the kebab spice which can be purchased at most Asian food stores. Mix well and leave overnight or at least an hour for the flavours to penetrate the meat.

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2. While the chicken is marinating prepare the yoghurt sauce and the tomato and onion salad. This is as simple as placing the ingredients above into a bowl and mixing well. For the yoghurt sauce, I included a whole scotch bonnet chilli which adds significant heat as well as a fruity flavour to the kebab. Be wary however as they are extremely hot so add a little at a time until you reach your preferred heat.

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3. Preheat your grill to its highest setting and allow to come up to temperature. You are aiming for the chicken to caramalise and the skin to crisp. When skewering the chicken leave a gap between each piece, this will ensure maximum surface area of the chicken is exposed to the heat giving a shorter cooking time and maximum taste. Cook for around 3 minutes per side and set aside.

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4. For the bread, I used shop bought naan bread again from the Asian food store. These work great as they are thin enough to roll and provide an authentic Gyro taste. If you cannot get naan bread tortilla wraps or pitta bread are a less worthy alternative. To serve you need to heat the naans slightly over the grill for 20 seconds per side.

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5. Now for the fun part, once your bread is piping hot fill the centre with the chicken, tomato and onion salad and drizzle with the yoghurt sauce. The last thing that separates a gyro from other kebabs is the inclusion of fries. 

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6. Ensure you don't overfill the bread as this will make the kebab harder to roll and you will also end up with the majority of the filling falling out.

Get stuck in and enjoy!