Quick dinner: Tasty Lamb Skewers With Yogurt, Cucumber and Dill Sauce

Growing up outside of Chicago, my mom and dad would take the family downtown to Greektown on Sundays after church. It was like being in a different country — there were Greek restaurants lining each block. My favorite dish was the gyros, made from a giant spit of grilled lamb, crisped by the flames, and served with tzatziki, the yogurt-cucumber sauce made with lemon, garlic and dill.

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These days, I make my own. I have my butcher bone out a leg of lamb and trim it. Grilled on skewers, the lamb is great as is or tucked into pita bread. For the sauce, which is good on meats or veggies, I use Greek-style yogurt, which gives the sauce a thicker consistency. Make sure you salt the grated cucumbers and let them rest over a sieve, so some of their water can drain off.

As I take my first bite, I drift back to my childhood days in Greektown and say, “Opa!”

Lamb Skewers With Yogurt, Cucumber and Dill Sauce

Makes 24 small skewers or 24 pita sandwiches

Note: If you are serving these as skewers, soak 24 short bamboo skewers in water for 30 minutes, so they don’t burn.

3 pounds leg of lamb, boneless

¼ cup olive oil

1 tablespoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon ground pepper


1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, grated and drained (be sure to squeeze all the water out)

1½ teaspoons kosher salt

1¼ cups Greek yogurt

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon white-wine vinegar

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon lemon zest

¼ cup fresh dill, finely chopped

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

8 large or 24 baby pita circles


Heat broiler (or grill). Trim the lamb of excess fat and silver skin, and cut into 4-inch by 1-inch strips. Transfer lamb to a bowl and toss with the olive oil, salt and pepper. Thread a strip of lamb onto each skewer, so the tip of the skewer is not exposed. Cover any exposed skewer with foil. Arrange the skewers in a single layer on a foil-lined sheet pan. (If you’ll be serving this in pita rounds, you can skip the skewers.)
In a medium bowl, combine all the sauce ingredients and mix well. Let the sauce sit for 10 minutes for flavors to blend. Transfer to a small serving bowl and garnish with a sprig of dill.
If you wish to warm the pita, wrap them tightly in foil and warm them in a 300-degree oven for 10 minutes.
Place the lamb in the broiler, 2-3 inches from the heat source and broil until just cooked through, about 2 minutes. Turn over and cook on the other side until the meat

Source:: East Bay – Lifestyle

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