Thursday, July 22, 2010

Greek Night!!

So I have been wanting to do gyros for awhile, and for some reason, lately I have just wanted stuff from different countries.  So I planned an exotic menu for the week and we shopped for all of the ingredients.  Tonight was Greek Night...we had gyros, greek salad and we're about to have baklava for dessert as soon as it's cool.  I think it was a success, but it was not my husband's favorite.  Though I do think my in-laws enjoyed it.

Traditionally, gyros are made with lamb and beef together,  roasted on a spit and then shaved very thinly.  Lamb is kind of pricey in Utah, so we went with just the flank steak.  It turned out well, even though not quite as authentic.  I include the recipe for the toppings, as well as the greek salad dressing, and the baklava.


1 flank steak
steak marinade (I didnt use my recipe this time, I used a bottle of Lawry's steak and chops marinade.  Use whatever you have)
Tzatziki sauce (recipe follows)
tomato and red onion salsa (recipe follows)
4 pitas

Directions for gyro below sauce recipes.  (sorry, just works better that way)

Tzatziki sauce

1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and diced very finely
1 c plain greek yogurt (the thicker stuff)
1 tsp dry dill weed
1 1/2 tbsp minced garlic (I used a press)
1 tsp grated lemon zest
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp each of salt and pepper

Mix together, refrigerate til needed for gyros.  Can be made ahead.

Tomato and Onion Salsa
1 small tomato (I used a roma, but whatever you have), diced very small
1/4 small red onion, diced finely
2 tbsp sugar
1/4 c balsamic vinegar

Stir together ingredients, place in fridge til needed.

Marinate flank steak overnight in a ziplock bag.  when ready to serve, grill steak, 5 minutes per side over medium high heat.   Let it rest for a few minutes, then slice it thinly.  Warm pitas in microwave or on very low temp in oven.  Assemble gyros by starting with tzatziki sauce in the bottom of center of pita (fold it like a taco, not like a pocket bread), then the meat, then the tomato onion salsa, and then finally the lettuce.  Enjoy!

Greek Salad

1/2 head romaine lettuce, chopped
1 small can sliced olives, or 1/2 regular can of sliced olives (usually this is kalamata olives, but the family likes black olives better.  Use what you like.)
1/2 small block feta cheese, cut into thin strips, or crumbled
1/4 small red onion, diced finely
Dressing, recipe follows.

Greek Salad Dressing

1/4 c red wine vinegar
1/8 c white wine vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 small clove garlic, pasted or pressed
1/3 c olive oil
1/2 c canola oil

Mix together either in a salad dressing mixer or in a bowl with a whisk.  Shake or whisk til well blended.  Pour over salad and toss.

Toss all ingredients together.  Pour over dressing, toss.  Enjoy.


40 sheets of phyllo dough (1 full pkg) thawed.
3 sticks butter, melted
5 c chopped walnuts
1/2 c sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground cloves
honey syrup, recipe follows

Honey Syrup

2 c sugar
2 c water
1 c honey
zest of 1 lemon

Mix together in small saucepan, bring to boil.  Reduce heat to simmer for 10 minutes.  Remove from heat.  Should be warm when putting on top of baklava.

Directions for baklava assembly

Mix the walnuts, sugar, cinnamon and cloves in a mixing bowl.  Set aside.

Layer 12 sheets of phyllo dough, brushing with butter between each sheet.  Keep the sheets moist by covering with a damp paper towel.  After layering the dough with the butter for 12 sheets, top with 1/3 the walnut mixture, and spread evenly.  Layer again on top another 12 sheets of dough, again, brushing each sheet with butter before adding another sheet.  Then add another layer of walnuts.   Top with 8 more layers of the dough sheets, again buttering each time you lay a sheet down.  Top with last bit of walnut mixture, and then cover with the remaining 8 sheets of dough.  Cover the top layer of dough sheet with the rest of the butter.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until golden brown.  Top with warm syrup, then cool completely, and serve.

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