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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 10-04-2009, 06:13 PM   #1
Saiko
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Default Saiko's Greek Chicken Souvlaki, with Pron

This is the wifey's favorite dish, and she is always begging me to make it for her. Chicken Souvlaki is basically the chicken version of a Gyro, which is made with lamb and beef. The key to any Souvlaki (or Gyro) is the Tzatziki sauce, which flavors the entire dish. The tzatziki you get on a gryo is usually pretty lifeless, and sometimes made with sour cream instead of Greek yogurt. Homemade tzatziki is incredible, and a great snack served with pita chips or bread.
If you can't find Greek yogurt, you can make it from regular yogurt. Drape a cheesecloth over a bowl, and drain 3 cups of regular yogurt overnight in the fridge through the cheesecloth. Discard the liquid, and you now have Greek yogurt, which is obviously much thicker than regular yogurt.
I'm also including my recipe for my Greek salad dressing, since I mix in a little of the salad dressing with the chicken when I pull it off the grill.

Chicken Marinade:
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup EVOO
2 tsp Greek oregano
4 small cloves garlic minced

Tzatziki Sauce:
1 large English cucumber, or 2 regular cucumbers
1-2 tsp salt, to taste
2 TBSP EVOO
2 TBSP fresh lemon juice
2 small cloves garlic minced
2 cups Greek yogurt
2-4 TBSP minced fresh dill or mint to taste (I prefer dill)

Greek Salad Dressing:
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
2/3 cup EVOO
1 tsp dried Greek oregano
1 small glove garlic, minced
1 tsp lemon zest
1 TBSP lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste

Chicken Souvlaki:
2 lbs chicken breasts
Pita bread
EVOO
Chicken Marinade
Tzatziki Sauce
Greek Salad Dressing (Not critical, dish is good without it)


Chicken Marinade:
Whisk together the ingredients for the Chicken Marinade. I make this with lots of lemon juice cause wifey and I like it tart, you can go with 2 parts EVOO and 1 part lemon juice if you don't want it as tart.



Cube the chicken breasts into large cubes.




Mix the chicken and the marinade in a gallon freezer bag and store in a fridge for 4 to 8 hours.



Tzatziki Sauce:
Peel the cucumbers, then use a spoon to scrape all the seeds, then cut into large chunks. Grate the cucumbers, then after grating, grab a small fist of grated cucumber at a time and squeeze the liquid out over the sink.




You can use the cucumber as is, but I like to chop it finer after grating it.



Mix all the ingredients for the tzatziki together in a bowl except for the dill. Then mix in the dill.




This is good stuff! Makes a great snack with some pita chips.



Making the Souvlaki:
Season the chicken with salt and pepper, then insert the chicken on some skewers.



While the grill is warming, brush both sides of some pita bread with EVOO. Don't worry about putting too much oil, you can pat them with a paper towel when you pull them off the grill. If you don't brush with oil the pita will crack.




Grill the chicken, turning once. These will cook FAST, so don't multi-task here. Pull as soon as the largest chunk of chicken hits 160 degrees. DON'T OVER COOK! A thermapen (red) really helps here.




This step isn't critical, but I always stir in a little Greek salad dressing with the chicken. Wifey will cube these a little smaller while I heat up the pita.




Heat the pita for about 30 seconds on each side until warm. Only heat until the pita is warm! If you heat it too long it will stiffen up on you. Use a paper towel to pat off any extra EVOO.




Served up with some tomatoes and a bunch of tzaziki. Onion is also nice to add. Little salad with feta on the side. Yummy.




And there you have it. It's a bit of work, but leftovers are great. You can use leftover chicken to top a big Greek salad, and the tzaziki is great with anything. That's all!
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Last edited by Saiko; 10-04-2009 at 08:19 PM..
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Unread 10-04-2009, 06:23 PM   #2
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Um - I'll take 2 please. Thanks for the play by play on these - this is making it to my recipe file.
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Unread 10-04-2009, 06:24 PM   #3
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Oh man, nice job. I still maintain that the best chicken dishes I have had have been cooked by Greeks. Tsatsiki is a great condiment. I want some souvlaki now.
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Unread 10-04-2009, 06:28 PM   #4
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Thanks Saiko! I love the Greek.
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Unread 10-04-2009, 06:28 PM   #5
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I haven't had souvlaki in a long long time, That my friend looks way better than any I've had...Nice One!
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Unread 10-04-2009, 06:35 PM   #6
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That looks awesome!! I love tzaziki sauce. That recipe is a keeper. Thanks
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Unread 10-04-2009, 06:38 PM   #7
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Saiko, that really sounds and looks awsome. Full of tons of flavors that sound fantastic. Nice tutorial as well.
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Unread 10-04-2009, 07:00 PM   #8
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Great job and tutorial!
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Unread 10-04-2009, 07:12 PM   #9
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Looks really good. We will do that one night this week.
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Unread 10-04-2009, 07:35 PM   #10
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How is greek style yogurt different than regular yogurt?
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Unread 10-04-2009, 07:38 PM   #11
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Looks great, I love greek food!!
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Unread 10-04-2009, 08:01 PM   #12
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Awesome job. My favorite chicken is Greek Lemon chicken..
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Unread 10-04-2009, 08:07 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesTX View Post
How is greek style yogurt different than regular yogurt?
I believe it's thicker, that's why you want to drain regular yogurt first.
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Unread 10-04-2009, 08:07 PM   #14
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Very nice write up with pics for those wanting to try a different recipe.

On a side note, we have several Greek restaurants nearby that have Gyros on the menu. They do offer the white sauce and they have a red sauce. Not sure what exactly is in the red, but damn is it delicious. I like the red more than the white.
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Unread 10-04-2009, 08:14 PM   #15
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Thanks for this beautiful play-by-play!

I will be trying this out this week. If I can make it work, it looks like it might become a lunchtime regular.

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