Döner kebab of Turkey

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This is a dish many people will recognize (think Greek Gyro). And I’ll be completely honest, I can’t tell the difference between the two. From the recipes I’ve found, the ingredients of the Gyro seem standard for the Döner kebab: lamb, sliced and diced vegetables, a yogurt based sauce, all piled in a pita. Maybe I didn’t do enough research to find the real differences between them, but needless to say, they are similar dishes.

Memories of this dish go back to my college days. When I was a student at Augsburg College, I loved going to a restaurant in our neighborhood called Afro Deli. They had a variety of different ethnic foods there, including Mediterranean and African cuisine. The traditional, vertical rotisserie of lamb spun behind the cashier as I ordered that very dish. This was considered the gyro, but like I said, it was very reminiscent of the meal we created for Turkey.

For this particular recreation, I substituted strips of beef for the lamb. Authenticity is something I always strive for, but lamb is expensive. For this particular recipe, I found I could justify the substitution. Homemade pita bread was fun to make and worth the time!

Ingredient List

  • Onion
  • Garlic
  • Lemon juice
  • Oregano
  • Pepper
  • Turmeric
  • Curry powder
  • Salt
  • Beef flanksteak
  • Pita
  • Tzatziki sauce

Quick Quotes

S: “Real good. Reminded me of the good old days of eating at Izmir’s [a Turkish restaurant in Vienna while studying abroad].”

T: “Nothing new in flavor, but I enjoyed making it – never have before!”

Trivial Trifles

  • The capital of Turkey is Ankara
  • The official language is Turkish
  • Turkey has the second largest standing military force in NATO (US is the largest), and every fit male must serve in the army for a period of 3 weeks to one year
  • Turkey is considered a transcontinental Eurasian country, though it is still divided into Asian Turkey (97% of the country) and European Turkey (or East Thrace, 3 % of the country)

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