Nothing Rhymes with Shawarma

Well, well, well, it’s that time again – Blue Apron recipe time!! Tonight I made Shawarma!! Of course, being the comic-book aficionado that I am (or was, grad school has seriously cut into my hobbies that require money…) I have to reference the scene from The Avengers movie:

avengersMom, this is a pretty great movie, and they must have it at the library: watch it so you get my nerdy reference, s’il vous plait!

Okay, so Shawarma.


Tonight’s recipe is sponsored by: Aunt Terry and Bobby Flay, for buying and making the knives that made this meal possible!


Jokes aside, like 50% of this recipe was dicing. You’ve got your radishes for salad

IMG_1846Parisian cucumbers (those are the tiny ones), sliced on an angle

IMG_1847Red onions, finely chopped

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Lemon, zested and quartered – check and check

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A few cloves of garlic, minced and smashed! (I would make a “Hulk SMASH!” joke here, but that’s just too nerdy for one post…)

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And finely, pick mint off the stems but don’t dice it till you need it!

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Have a glass of wine/beer and lets just review: mint, radish, lemon zest, lemon quarter, onion, garlic, cucumber!

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So. many. bowls.

Okay, now you’re going to want to cook onions, garlic, and 3/4 spice mixture (this has a ton of crazy stuff in it Za’tar or something??) in a little bit of olive oil.

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Set this aside in a big bowl and let it cool a bit. While it’s cooling, move forward to the yogurt bit, but I’ll keep my tangents together (that feels like an oxymoron…). IMG_1862

Next we’re going to mix onions and stuff into lamb/beef mixture with some salt and pepper. But first, I have to address the repercussions of growing up with an Italian family. “Mix together with spoon” is really just a suggestion. From years of making meatballs, I know the best way to mix stuff into meat is with your two hands, so that is exactly what I did! 

Now, back to Shawarma! Separate lamb/beef into patties and cook them till browned on both sides.

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This is a logical segue into the Tzatziki sauce. First, let’s definitely clarify: Tzatziki is a sauce because it is not made with meat product. I think it’s important to let our readers know, Ma, that our blog’s name, Gravy or Sauce, comes from an integral family debate: when is it sauce and when is it gravy? Well, by gram’s definition – the same gram who told me to mix meatballs with my hands – if it’s made with just veggies, it’s a sauce, but if it’s made with meat drippings of some sort, it’s a gravy!

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So start with some plain greek yogurt and add to it lemon zest, juice from lemon quarters, chopped mint, and some spice blend. Remember to chop the mint now, for maximum flavor! And save some mint to garnish for later. This is going to be used on the schawarmas themselves and also in the radish salad. (Can you tell I have no idea what part of this is actually “shawarma”? I just looked it up, it’s got to do with how you cook the lamb.)

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Back to the lamb patties –

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YUM! Meanwhile, heat up two pitas in the oven and put some tzatziki sauce and cucumbers down to make a luxurious, princess quality bed for those little lamb slices of heaven.

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Oh! I almost forgot the radishes! Add half the sauce to the chopped radishes, plus some sunflower seeds and spice blend! 

IMG_1865Finally, put the lambs on their bed of deliciousness. Garnish with some spice blend and mint!

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YUM! And the awesome thing about my Blue Apron dinners are that I have two! So lunch tomorrow is already made (the rest of the radish salad and shawarma for person two) and I can eat my Spicey Hot Chili for dinner! Or vice versa! The possibilities are endless!!

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