Souvlaki is a standard dish that can be found in any Greek restaurant. That is---grilled skewers of meat served with pita bread, veggies and yogurt sauce (tzatziki). If eating healthy is your goal, there’s no need to consider Greek food a culinary crisis. But as with everything, there are good choices and not-so-good choices. You could easily feed your carb addiction, as many dishes come with rice, along with your protein cravings since meat is present in many recipes. Considering popular choices such as moussaka (potatoes, meat, béchamel sauce), pastitsio (a cheese and pasta dish), and baklava (dessert), all tempting for their rich flavors, chicken souvlaki is a healthier, more nurturing option for your digestive system, especially if you use organic chicken.
- ¼ cup fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 ¼ pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, trimmed and cut into ¾-inch pieces
- 4 8-inch pita breads
- Tzatziki Sauce (recipe follows)
- 2 cups chopped romaine lettuce
- 2 Roma tomatoes, chopped (about 2 cups)
- 2 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (about ½ cup)
Ingredients for Tzatziki Sauce (makes about ¾ cup; serves 4):
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- ½ cup plain 2% Greek yogurt
- ¼ cucumber, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeded, and finely chopped (about 1/3 cup)
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint leaves
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
In a bowl, combine the garlic and salt, and using the back of a spoon, mash the garlic into paste. Stir in the lemon juice. Add the yogurt, cucumber, mint, and parsley, and stir well. The tzatziki will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 4 days.
In a large bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, oil, garlic, parsley, oregano, and pepper. Add the chicken, toss to coat, cover the bowl, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 8 hours.
Preheat a gas grill to high heat.
Thread the chicken onto presoaked wooden skewers (metal is OK too) taking care to evenly distribute the pieces among the skewers. Grill, turning occasionally, until the chicken is browned on all sides and an instant-read thermometer registers 160 F, 18 to 20 minutes.
Arrange the pita breads directly on the grill grates and cook until warm and faintly charred, about 2 minutes per side.
Lay each warm pita bread on a plate and spread 1½ tablespoons of tzatziki on each. Divide the lettuce among the pita, arranging it in a line down the center of each, and repeat with the tomato and feta. Slide the chicken off of the skewers and divide it among the pita. Wrap the sides of the pita inward over the chicken and vegetables and serve.
Source: Eating in the Middle by Andie Mitchell