T Nation

Shawarma / Greek-Style Meat?

My new favorite place for a quick bite is one of those Middle-Eastern style cafe’s where they have the two rotating spits, one with chicken and the other with lamb…you know those places: they shave off chunks of meat from the big mound with some sort of knife and then put it in a pita pocket or something. Delicious.

Anyhow, I got to wondering whether these things are all that healthy for me. I stick to the chicken, but the thing tastes so damn good, I couldn’t help but wonder whether they deep fry that meat before sticking it on the spot, or maybe just soak it in a tub of grease/oil overnight…I mean, that glistening sheen on the meat sure doesn’t come from wholesome butter-free baking alone! That, and the meat sort of looks like the “hot dog” of chicken…but sure does taste good.

Anyone know just how the chicken is prepared before the stick it on that spit? I’ve got a sneaking suspicion this might actually not be very healthy for me.

TRANS FAT

Its actually Lebanese-ish lol. But yeah, most big stores will have it full of trans-fat. If you want to get it without all that stuff, go to small, private lebanese eateries. They usually have whole wheat bread with it too. The beef is usually not packed with butter and stuff, because it holds together.

I’ve been eating it all my life lol.

greek souvlaki. Rulez

I remember reading a recipe for this kinda shawarma meat on the Turkish embassy website, and they recommended 1.5lbs of fat for every 1lb of meat, to make sure it sticks together. I used to eat it all the time, but after reading that, no more.

It’s been so long since I’ve had a shawarma I would kill for one… (not really, but damn they were good).

As for how healthy they are,I don’t know. It probably depends mostly on the individual restaurant/cafe/etc. Those in the u.s. are more likely to use shitty margarine type products whereas in the middle east you are more likely to find straight up butter/olive oil used for fats. Hands down the best Shawarma i’ve ever had was in Jeddah (Saudi Arabia).

shawarmas! I ate so many of those while i was in spain and morrocco. hahahah. doner kebap

Don’t know what is in it and I don’t care either. Just throw it on some bread, a dollop of yogurt, and send it this way!

I can’t pass one of those places up.
I think I have to go find one now. Thanks for the reminder.

It’s known as Gyro, and it’s called that because, as you know it’s cooked on a vertical spit that goes around. And “gyro” is the Greek work for going around.

As far as it being healthy, I know that in the States most shops buy their gyro meat from two main factories based out Chicago. It’s processed meat: they take it, grind it up, add a bunch of spices, and then freeze the shit out of it. The chicken is a smarter choice than the lamb/beef mix. If you are able to go to more traditional places (like in Greece for instance) – the cones are actually made by layering slabs of meat on top of each other, rather than having it processed. Much more fresh and delicious.

Oh damn - you guys are bursting my bubble here.

Okay Shoebolt - where in Ontario are you and if you’re in the GTA - where is one of these non-trans fat shwarma dudes.

This is disapointing for me to hear - I think I will be grumpy for the rest of the day now.

troop

Forgot to tell you, a lot of the fat drips off since it’s cooked on a spit, theres a tray on the bottom to catch it all…that’s a plus I suppose!

You just made me hungry. I was born and lived in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia for a long time. Since then i have loved the taste of shawarmas. Thank God that there are two Shawarma King restaraunts around where I currently live.

[quote]atroopan wrote:
Oh damn - you guys are bursting my bubble here.

Okay Shoebolt - where in Ontario are you and if you’re in the GTA - where is one of these non-trans fat shwarma dudes.

This is disapointing for me to hear - I think I will be grumpy for the rest of the day now.

troop
[/quote]

I’ve actually only found two like that. And its down in Hamilton next to McMaster University… sorry lol.

Some are really awful, like Pita Nutsy in Streetsville. It was probably one of the best tasting shawarmas I’ve ever had, but greasiness ruled on my hands.

You mostly find the ones with less fat in Arab countries, like where I lived in Saudi Arabia. The meat is a lot more dry, but coupled with hummus or tahina it tastes absolutely insane.

[quote]playmaker08 wrote:
You just made me hungry. I was born and lived in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia for a long time. Since then i have loved the taste of shawarmas. Thank God that there are two Shawarma King restaraunts around where I currently live.[/quote]

Woah dude. When, where and which school did you go to (if any).