Monday, January 30, 2012

Chicken Shawarma

When this recipe popped up on Gourmet: Day to Day, it was a food that I had never heard of, nor did I know how to pronounce.  Usually, I skip right over these recipes and just let someone else make and enjoy them, but the photo made the food look so good that I knew I'd have to try it.

I found out several things about Chicken Shawarma when I was researching it out of curiosity.  According to Wikipedia, shawarma is a fast-food staple across the Middle East, Europe and the Caucasus.  The meat is usually made on a spit that can rotate up to a day, and common meats are lamb, goat, chicken, turkey, and beef.  Shawarma can be eaten with tabbouleh, fattoush, taboon bread, tomato, and cucumber

Chicken Shawarma
slightly adapted from Gourmet: Day to Day
1.25 pounds chicken breasts
1/2 cup Greek Yogurt
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon dill

Yogurt Sauce
7 oz. cup plain greek yogurt
1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon fresh chopped dill
1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 head romaine lettuce, washed and teared
1 medium cucumber, sliced thinly
2 medium tomatoes, cut into 1/8ths
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 red onion sliced thinly
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
Juice of 1 small lemon
Salt and Pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon dill

6  pitas, or flatbreads

1) In a small bowl, combine the ingredients for the marinade (yogurt, lemon juice, garlic, cinnamon, oregano, salt, nutmeg, and clove). Add chicken to the marinade, coat well, cover and refrigerate for 4-24 hours. If desired, slice the chicken into strips before marinating to maximize the flavor.
2)  Prepare the yogurt sauce for the sandwiches. Combine plain greek yogurt, garlic, dill, and salt. Refrigerate until ready to use.
3) After marinating the chicken, grill or pan-sear until cooked through.
4) Combine cucumber, tomato, red onion, garlic, lemon juice and olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside
5)  Build the chicken shawarma sandwiches. Spread the yogurt sauce on your flat bread, top with the chicken, lettuce and cucumber, tomato, onion salad. Roll the sandwich closed. You can wrap the sandwich in foil to help it stay closed as you eat.

This dish tastes so fresh and amazing.  The spices on the chicken were present but not overwhelming, and tasted amazing with the sauce.  I am thinking about making the chicken and eating it on salads.

At first my husband said these were just "Ok", but as the meal went on, he said they grew on him, and he was disappointed there wasn't enough chicken for seconds.

This dish comes together quickly, it is just putting the marinade together and marinating the chicken that takes the longest.  I am very glad I didn't pass this dish over when I saw it.

1 comment:

  1. I'm so glad you didn't pass over it either! I'm glad you liked it and that it grew on your hubby! It is one of our favorite ethnic meals now! (bonus that it's healthy right?)