Signature Dish of Steve Wertz

Lamb Gyros

Lamb Gyros - Picture by Steve Wertz

Having tried duplicating the Kronos Gyro Meat a couple previous times, they were edible, but not quite what I had in mind. This works very well and comes pretty darn close to what you'll find in the restaurants (that use Kronos brand gyro meat). - sw

Seasoning mix:

1 T Greek oregano
1 T Rubbed sage
1 T Whole coriander seed
2 ts Marjoram
1 ts Granulated garlic
1 ts Granulated onion
1 ts Whole cumin
1/2 ts Whole fenugreek
1/2 ts Whole black pepper

All the above are to be ground in a coffee grinder or by using a mortar/pestle.

Meat mixture:

1.5 lb Ground lamb (not too lean - about 80-85% lean)
1 Large Egg
1/3 cup Fine bread crumbs
1.5 ts Salt

Mix all but 1 ts of the spice mixture into meat mixture and blend well, saving that teaspoon if you make the yogurt sauce. Some people have reported success using a food processor for a denser-textured meat. Working the meat well with spatula or hands to mix also acheives the same effect

Press meat/spice mixture into a adequate loaf pan and cover with sliced onions. Bake unconvered at 375F for 35-40 minutes.

I also make a cucumber/sour cream sauce, with finely diced onion and cucumber, green onions, a pressed clove of garlic, juice of 1/3rd lime, and a little salt along with a touch of the seasoning mixture from above. I let that sit for 2 hours (6 is better). Make this before anything else.

After baking the gyro loaf, you can optionally fry slices of the meat in a very hot pan for a minute or two to give the meat some texture and maillard effect (browing). You can also briefly fry some onions along side the meat to use in filling the pita. The cooked onions should still be slightly crispy and not too limp.

Or you can just slice the loaf and some fresh onion and use as is.

I sometimes use warmed tortillas rather than pitas to make my gyros. The tortillas or pitas are warmed over the open flame of the gas burner. I also sometimes substitute Mexican cotija cheese for feta cheese, but I never use cow's milk feta - only sheep's milk. The cheese is optional. Chopped tomatoes also usually accompany the meat, onion, sour cream/yogurt w/cucumber sauce filling.

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