Friday, May 8, 2015

Chicken Souvlaki Pita

I really like updating old posts because I like making them look prettier. Plus, my older posts are not as easy to follow and my chicken souvlaki pita post was definitely in need of some improvement.

This dish has been a favorite of mine for years. I can't even remember the first time I made it. I just know that when I was home from college on break, my sister and I would hit up this pita place in Montclair (Beyond Pita) and we'd always get one falafel pita and one chicken shawarma pita. I haven't perfected my falafel recipe yet, but when I do, I will share. I have, however, perfected my chicken souvlaki recipe, so here it is in all its glory.
Ingredients [serves 4]:
1½ lbs. chicken thighs
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons minced parsley
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
3 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons olive oil

flatbread pita (2 to 3 per person)
chunky tzatziki
diced tomatoes
feta crumbles
diced onion
diced avocado
minced parsley
pickled peppers
hot sauce


This chicken is ridiculously simple but it's amazingly delicious. Chicken thighs are already really flavorful and tender, but marinating in lemon juice makes the chicken even more flavorful and tender.
Add the chicken to a bowl along with minced garlic, parsley, salt, pepper, lemon juice, and olive oil and give it a good stir. Wrap in cling film and chuck in the fridge and leave to marinate for 2 hours.
When you're ready to cook, skewer the chicken chunks and toss onto a hot grill or grill pan. When I made this meal (which was back at the end of March), it was still a little too cold for the actual grill so I stayed indoors. No worry though, because a good and heavy cast iron grill pan is a wonderful substitute for an outdoor grill.
Place the skewers onto a screaming hot pan/grill. Cook the chicken until it's charred and gorgeous. If the chicken was cut into small enough chunks, then it shouldn't take too long to cook. But, if you're nervous, you can always stab the largest piece with a meat thermometer and make sure the internal temperature is 165F.
I also made a big batch of flatbread pita because homemade pita is so much yummier than store bought.
And of course, you can't have chicken souvlaki without delicious chunky tzatziki. Tzatziki tastes so much better when it's been given some time for the flavors to meld together so if you can, make it a few hours ahead of meal time.
Also, make sure to grab some more colorful toppings for the pita. These four: tomatoes, feta crumbles, minced parsley, and pickled peppers are my favorite. Red onion, avocado, and hot sauce are also great.
This is one of my favorite warmer weather meals because it's vibrant and fresh. The tender chicken is delicious, the sharp tzatziki is delicious, the toppings add crunch and are delicious. I guess my main message is that this is delicious.
Here's the recipe page:

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