Confession is good for the soul, right?
I must confess that I’m a huge fan of Lamb Gyros. I should further admit my love for these developed from a food booth at the rodeo. I’d never eaten one until a few years ago.
My life shall never, ever be the same.
There’s something about the tender meat, zingy Tzatziki sauce, fresh tomatoes, and tangy Feta cheese encased in soft Pita bread that makes my knees wobble while my mouth waters.
Devastated when the food vendor wasn’t at this year’s rodeo (yes, I only get these amazing treats once a year), I decided to make my own.
The hardest part was locating some lamb. Three grocery stores later, I happened upon a manager’s half-price special or I probably wouldn’t have purchased the meat because it ran a little (okay, astronomically) on the high side.
Regardless of how or where I purchased the lamb, the gyros turned out so, so good. I almost had to beat Captain Cavedweller off so I could have half of the leftovers.
Here’s how we made them:
Cucumber sauce – make and set aside in the fridge while they meat cooks. You can also make it the previous night. Just cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.
There are any number of traditional methods for cooking the meat. I stir-fried mine in a wok.
It didn’t take long for the meat to brown or the delicious scent to cause us to anxiously begin assembling the gyros.
Toast your Pita bread – just until it’s warm.
Then layer on all the delicious toppings and be thrilled you know how to make this at home instead of waiting to find the next vendor booth at a public event.
Lamb Gyro with Tzatziki Sauce
1 lb. of lamb, cooked and sliced into small pieces
1 tomato, sliced into bite-sized chunks
1/2 cup Feta cheese
1/4 cup Kalamata olives, sliced
1 cucumber, peeled and coarsely shredded
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 cup plain yogurt
2 tbsp. white vinegar
1/2 tsp. dill weed
In a medium bowl, sprinkle salt over cucumber and mix well. Let stand five minutes. Drain. Stir in remaining dressing ingredients. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
(Please ignore the fact I show sour cream in the ingredient photo because I forgot to get plain yogurt and had to make a little substitution. Ditto on the balsamic vinegar instead of white vinegar. Follow the recipe and you’ll be fine!)
You can use whatever type of lamb you like (or can find). I ended up with a package of lamb chops and cut all the meat off the bones into thin slices. I then put the lamb in a resealable bag with about 2 tbsp. olive oil, 1 tsp. salt, and 1 tsp. seasoning. I let the meat marinate overnight. I dumped the contents of the bag into a heated wok and stirred the meat around on medium-heat until it was nicely browned (and filled the house with a mouth-watering aroma).
While the meat cooks, chop your tomatoes and slice the olives then set aside.
Warm the pita bread in the oven for just a minute or two until it’s warm and soft and wonderful.
Layer on the meat, followed by the sauce, tomatoes, olives and cheese.
She Who Could Eat This Once a Week
Makes five Gyros.