Do you like eating shawarma but hate paying $15 for it at the restaurant? Why not make your own shawarma and enjoy the delicious taste of freshly made food? This simple homemade chicken shawarma recipe doesn’t need a special rotisserie!
Shawarma is a popular dish from the Middle East, with origins in Turkish cuisine. Think of it as a pita wrap but better! It’s filled with all your favorite toppings and sauce, which you can either top or dip. Shawarma is a popular street food all over the world, but particularly in the Middle East.
Since the Ottoman Empire dominated the Islamic world for decades, its cuisine influenced nearly every aspect of life in the region. Shawarma is a good example of this influence. While it is unknown when shawarma first appeared in the Arab world, most experts believe it is an Arabized form of the Turkish doner.
The word shawarma is derived from the Turkish word çevirme, which means “to turn.” Shawarma, a popular street food in the Arab world, is the most tagged food on Instagram in the Middle East, according to data collected by the food delivery service Gousto, with 544,230 tags in multiple languages.
Chawarma, a Mediterranean sandwich
Whether you call it “shawarma”, “kebab” or even “Greek”, this meat-based sandwich slowly cooked on a rotating spit is a delight enjoyed all over the planet. But where exactly does it come from? And why is it found under so many different names? Let’s retrace the history of shawarma, its variants and the right way to prepare it.
A true star of nighttime snacks or quick meals, the kebab has invaded the world and has been part of our culinary landscape for a long time, allowing party-goers and students to get their fill at low cost in all circumstances. But its original form, the shawarma, was not necessarily a popular sandwich. Between ancestral cooking methods and luxury dishes, let’s find out where this delicious meat sandwich comes from.
The origins of shawarma
Shawarma is a spicy meat preparation originating in Lebanon, served as a sandwich in a pita bread, in a pancake, in a dürüm (unleavened) bread or on the plate, with separate meat and vegetables. It is this sandwich that we more commonly refer to as Kebab in Europe, although the Lebanese variant is not quite the same as Turkish kebab.
It can be written chawarma or shawarma , a term that comes from the Turkish word çevirme which means “it turns”, in reference to the method of preparing the meat.
This meat recipe, first mentioned in writing in the 14th century, has an uncertain origin and could go back further in the past, as it is believed that the nomadic peoples of Central Asia cooked meat on spits or swords from that time. During the 13th century, it even acquired the status of luxury food from the sultans of the Indian royal court.
However, its democratization as a sandwich had to wait until the 19th century, when shawarma was offered in bread on the streets of the cities of the Ottoman Empire. It was at this same time that the idea of cooking meat on a vertical spit was adopted, which allowed the fat to flow throughout the preparation,
At the dawn of the 1970s, a member of the Turkish community in Berlin launched the kebab by presenting it as a fast food product, thus triggering a growing craze for this meatloaf. From then on, the Turkish sandwich set out to conquer Europe and the shawarma will become part of our culinary habits.
The best part with shawarma is that you can make it at home just in time for dinner!
How to Make The Mediterranean Shawarma
If you've never had shawarma before, then you're in for a treat! This recipe is all about flavor and taste. Simply buy flap steak, cut into strips against the grain, marinate the beef with liquids and spices, and cook.
Shawarma is All about the spices! The right mixture will give the meat the flavour. to learn everything about this recipe, follow these steps:
Start off with the marinade
In a bowl, dump the mixture of spices. Then, add the extra virgin oil, the white vinegar, and the lemon (zest and juice).
Now mix everything up, and here it is! the perfect marinade.
Now, take the steak and what are you going to do is cut against the grain (this technique helps when the meat is a little bit chewy), and cut them to bite-size pieces.
Back to the bowl
After cutting the meat, dump it in the marinade of spices, add to it the salt, black pepper, garlic, and onion, mix everything and let it in the fridge for couple of hours (the more the better).
In high heat, cook your meat in a pan for about 10 minutes and flip it over to cook it on all sides.
- Amount Per Serving
- Calories 206.9
- % Daily Value *
- Cholesterol 53.6mg18%
- Sodium 204.4mg9%
- Potassium 318.2mg10%
- Total Carbohydrate 3.8g2%
- Dietary Fiber 1g4%
- Protein 18.9g38%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.