I am in love with gyros (yee-ros, and roll that R!). I am not so much in love with JY-rohs. Sorry, I had to. 😉
Tender, flavorful lamb, garlicky tzatziki sauce, warm pita, tomatoes and (sometimes) onions…what more could you ask for? Chicago is a mecca of the gyro and yet, I find I don’t get to eat them all that often. It’s a shame, really. When I do find a place with a great gyro, though, you’d be hardpressed to keep me away. I used to eat them quite a bit at my family’s restaurants (yes, that’s plural; everyone in my family works in a restaurant. We fit the stereotype.), but I find that now I tend to gravitate toward the chicken gyro, at least occasionally, as a lighter option when I go back to Michigan.
I was fortunate enough to find a new market (well, it’s new to me, not new to others) relatively nearby that has a lot of Greek food items I can’t find anywhere but Greektown. Greektown is a major pain in my arse to get to, but this place (HarvesTime, for all you Chicagoans), thankfully, isn’t. I was so happy to procure some Greek pitas there that I was inspired to make some chicken gyros at home. Traditional Greek pitas are pocketless and pliable, not like most of the stuff that has a pocket and is tiresome to chew that you normally pick up at the grocery store.
This is pretty similar to my shish kabob recipe but I use some plain yogurt in place of some of the oil in order to keep it moist and light. If you can’t grill, a broiler is a great substitution. I use mine ALL the time.
- 90 minutes (includes marinating time)
- 10 minutes
- 4 servings
- 1.25 lbs. chicken pieces (I used breast this time, but I also love using thighs, or a combo)
- 4 cloves garlic, smashed
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 2 tsp. red wine vinegar
- 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 2 heaping Tbsp. plain yogurt
- 1 Tbsp. dried oregano
- salt and pepper
- 1 cup tzatziki
- sliced tomatoes
- sliced onions (I use red as they are the only kind I like raw)
- 4 (pocketless) pitas
- Whisk together the garlic, lemon juice, vinegar, oil, yogurt, and oregano in a bowl. Add the chicken and rub the marinade in. Cover and refrigerate for about an hour.
- Preheat the broiler (or grill, or pan on the stove). Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper on both sides, and then broil until cooked through, about 5 minutes per side, depending what size/type chicken you are using. Allow the chicken to rest for a few minutes before slicing into strips.
- Meanwhile, heat your pitas. I have a gas stove, so I just spray them with a little bit of oil and stick them right on the burner for a few seconds per side. Top the pita with the chicken, tzatziki, tomatoes, onions. Roll up and eat!