I decided to go with these Mock gyros instead of quesadillas tonight, mostly because I wanted to make Tzatziki sauce for the first time. I took off all the good meat left on the chicken and mixed it with some olive oil, garlic, oregano, salt and pepper. I made homemade pita bread and Tzatziki sauce, a traditional Greek sauce consisting mainly of Greek yogurt and cucumbers. I’m using this recipe from Ina Garten for the sauce. And I used this recipe from Farmgirl Fare for the pita bread.
I thought since my ethnic background is more than Italian, I would focus on the other cultures I come from-Greek and Polish. I know! Some combination, right? The best thing about being Italian, Greek and Polish is the great foods from all three countries as well as other wonderful qualities. Polish pottery is beautiful, the ancient Greeks gave us our democratic society roots and Italian artwork, among other things, is famous the world over. There is so much more from all three countries, Italy, Greece and Poland, that I could write entire series on each but I won’t. I am trying to stick with the original goal of this blog-to record my journey to learn authentic and traditional Italian cooking, with a little Greek and Polish thrown in for good measure. Sure, I also post other ethnic recipes that we enjoy and a few stories about my childhood or family but I think those posts are what makes this blog a true reflection of who I am. I wear many “hats” and like sharing what I do with those I love and come into contact with.
Today I was featured as “Person of the Week” in a local paper. I am very honored to be featured on the front page and I hope it brings great things my way in the future. If you are here because you read about me in the paper, welcome! Take a look around and see if there is something you like. To learn more about me, click on the “About Mama” tab at the top, and you can find the recipes right next to that. Be sure to leave a comment and if you really like what you read today or want to keep up with me and my journey, find the subscribe box on the right sidebar and send me your email. I won’t spam you. If you change your mind, you can always unsubscribe later.
2 cups seasoned chicken meat (great use for leftovers)directions below
1-2 cups Tzatziki sauce
8 pita breads
1-2 chopped tomatoes
1/2 red onion diced
Mix the chicken with some salt and pepper, 1 clove of garlic-crushed, 1 or 2 tsp of dried oregano and olive oil to combine.Warm in the oven for a bit. Add to fresh pita bread, top with tomatoes, onions and Tzatziki sauce. Enjoy!
Editing to add some pictures and further thoughts. I think for my oven I need to bake these for at least 9 minutes where the recipe says 5-8 so check your pitas as they cook. I will double the recipe next time and try for larger sized bread as well. We loved the flavor and texture. Here are my pictures.
2-1/2 cups bread flour plus extra for dusting and rolling
2 teaspoons salt
1 Tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 Tablespoons good olive oil
1 cup warm water (105-110 degrees)
8 8-inch squares of aluminum foil for baking pitas
(Bernard claims that “placing the rounds on foil rather than on a baking sheet or stone allows a softer heat to surround the dough. A direct thrust of heat from a baking stone would form a crust difficult to puff.”)
In a large bowl combine 1 cup flour with the salt, sugar, and yeast. Add the oil and water. Beat vigorously with a wooden spoon for three minutes, then stir in the rest of the flour 1/2 cup at a time. The dough should be a rough, shaggy mass that will clean the sides of the bowl. If the dough is moist, add a small amount of additional flour. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and knead for 6 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 500°.
Divide the dough into 8 pieces. Roll into balls, dust lightly with flour, and cover with a damp tea towel. Let rest for 30 minutes. (I increased this from Bernard’s 20 minutes.) Use the palm of your hand to flatten each ball into a disk. Finish with a rolling pin, flattening the dough into a disk about 6″ in diameter and 3/16″ thick. Their thinness is more important than making them perfectly round. Irregularity adds charm, says Bernard.
Place each round on a square of foil, and carefully place 3 or 4 of the rounds directly on the oven rack. Bake for 5 to 8 minutes, or until they are puffed.
See how they puffed up?
Here are the ingredients all ready to be made into the gyros.
A finished product! Sorry for the bad lighting. Not sure how to fix it.