Going Greek: Venison Gyros
I still don’t know how to pronounce it however, no matter which pronunciation you decide, the Gyro sandwich has been deemed an American-Greek fast food staple. Served at festivals, carnivals and a select number of Mediterranean restaurants around the United States, the Gyro sandwich is a delicacy that I don’t often get to eat, but absolutely savor when I do.
According to Whats Cooking America the Gyro type of sandwich has been known, and sold on the streets of Greece, the Middle East, and Turkey for hundreds of years. Greek historians believe that the dish originated during Alexander The Great’s time when his soldiers used their knives to skewer meat that they turned over fires. Even today, a proper gyro is made with meat cut off a big cylinder of well-seasoned lamb or beef on a slowly rotating vertical spit called a gyro.
I don’t know about you but I don’t have a slow turning vertical spit in my kitchen. Heck, I barely have a kitchen! If you’re anything like us, you like to think outside the box when it comes to your wild game meat. After all, you worked hard to harvest the animal and what better way to honor your hard work than to experiment with different recipes.
Here is our own take on a venison gyro, or as Adam calls it a “Deer-ro”
2 lbs venison steak- any cut.
We used a package of deer venison steak at the very bottom of the freezer…you know, that package that is unmarked and questionable. The one that clearly you were either too tired to label during processing or didn’t even know what to call it. Any cut and type of venison meat will do, from deer to exotic game.
1 white onion
Salt, pepper, turmeric, paprika, cayenne, garlic and any other spice combinations you may like- oregano and mint would be good!
Typically you can buy tzatziki sauce in your local grocery store. Store bought has a very strong dill flavor and I like mine a little more diluted. Click on the link for an EASY TZATZIKI recipe which you can tweak to satisfy your pallet.
Roma tomato, sliced
Romaine lettuce, shredded
Hot sauce- Because we live in the South y’all
3. Using a cast iron skillet, heat and coat pan with olive oil and a tablespoon of butter. Add. venison and onion mix. Sear venison on both sides, making sure not to overcook but letting a crust form on the edges of the meat (that will give it the true gyro texture!). Add more olive oil/butter as needed. 4. Assemble sandwiches by heating pita bread. Layer tzatziki sauce, meat and onions, lettuce, tomato, feta cheese.
5. If you are feeling really creative, wrap your Gyro sandwich in foil for that real street food feeling. Enjoy!