Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Turkey Meatball Gyros

Before I moved to the Chicago area, I had never heard of a gyro. They are pretty common on restaurant menus here-at hot dog/Italian beef places and family-style restaurants. While you can purchase traditional gyro kits at the store, I started making a version at home using meatballs. It is a meal that pleases the whole family.

This is a meal that I make from scratch, but you could purchase any of the main ingredients premade if you'd like.

Turkey Meatballs
(you can also substitute hamburger, ground chicken, or venison)
1 1/2 lb. ground turkey
2 slices wheat bread
1 egg
1 Tbsp. dried minced onion
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. Garlic powder
1/4 tsp. pepper

Grind bread into bread crumbs in food processor or blender. Mix all ingredients and form into small meatballs. Bake in 375° oven for 30-40 minutes, turning once during baking. Alternately you can cook them in a pan on the stove top.

Easy Pita Bread
from (Carol's Easy Pita Bread)
3 to 3 1/2 C. flour (I use whole wheat, but all purpose or a combo is fine)
2 1/4 tsp. quick rising yeast (1 packet)
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/4 C. hot water

Combine 2 C. of flour, yeast, salt, and water in a large bowl. Beat well about 1 min. Mix in remaining flour, using just enough to make a soft, sticky dough. Turn out on floured board and continue to knead for 5 min. Divide into 8 balls. Roll out each ball to about 1/4 in thick and six inches in diameter. Place on very lightly greased cookie sheet. Let rise in warm place for 25 to 35 minutes. Bake at 450 for 4 min, turn over, bake for 4 min more or until lightly browned. Wrap immediately in dish towel for 3 to 4 minutes.

Cucumber Sauce (aka Tzatziki Sauce)
1/2 C. plain Greek yogurt
1/2 C. cucumber, peeled, diced small
3 T. red onion, finely diced (or 1 tsp. onion powder)
1/2 tsp. lemon pepper
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
Optional: Fresh Dill (Traditional Tzatziki has dill, but we prefer it without dill)

Mix together all ingredients. Can be made ahead of time and chilled until ready to serve.

Serve your gyros with sliced tomatoes, onions, and cucumbers. I like to split the meatballs in half, but you could leave them whole. Sometimes the kids like to eat everything separate. Other times they make it into a "sandwich" too.

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