CA My Meat-Tooth Cravings

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I don’t typically have a sweet-tooth, but I used to have meat-tooth often. I don’t miss most foods. I will admit, before I went vegan, I tried Jollibee’s chicken. I never made it to Toronto’s new Chick Fil A but I hear it’s like Wendy’s. I loved steak.

But for most of this year as a vegetarian-then-vegan, and due to lockdown, I have been missing carne asada tacos (which I learned how to cook vegan) and lamb gyro from Greek restaurants on the Danforth. Do any vegans (don’t have to be Greek - just a lover of Greek food) have any idea how to veganize lamb gyro? I can do the lemon potatoes with rosemary and all that. Rice with tomato paste. Just not sure how to make vegan lamb gyro.
 

Emma JC

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I googled 'vegan lamb gyros' and a number of suggestions came up - I would suggest that it is mostly to do with spices and so any base could be used as a meat substitute, like tempeh or Soy Curls, or seitan etc.

Edgy Veg likes challenges like that, maybe send her a message - she is in Toronto too.

good luck and let us know how your experiments go

Emma JC
 
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I googled 'vegan lamb gyros' and a number of suggestions came up - I would suggest that it is mostly to do with spices and so any base could be used as a meat substitute, like tempeh or Soy Curls, or seitan etc.

Edgy Veg likes challenges like that, maybe send her a message - she is in Toronto too.

good luck and let us know how your experiments go

Emma JC
Is edgy veg on this forum?
 

Emma JC

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Is edgy veg on this forum?


Vegan Youtubers are a great source for new ideas and ways to veganize your favourite foods. Candice (aka Edgy Veg) does this on a regular basis.

Emma JC
 

silva

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I've never made as written, but do something similar, using more equal parts water and vital wheat gluten. I use 2 cups each, and Penzeys Lamb and Turkish seasoning, a heaping Tblps each. They're similar to what the recipe calls for. Do not knead. I also cook it in my Instant Pot
I actually call it my gyro seitan, it slices super thin and goes perfectly with gyro toppings on pita.
 
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Veganite

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I've made a reasonable gyro/donair using Beyond meat. It's not exactly lamb, but it definitely satiated my craving for a donair aka a gyro. I grew up in Halifax. We call them donairs there, and yes, they were originally made with lamb. I think most places use ground beef now. I found Beyond meat quite tasty for this recipe, and the beauty is, no animals die.

I'm still refining it, but this is my recipe if you want to try it:

Halifax Donairs with/Beyond Meat

Sauce:


2/3 cup veganaise

1/3 cup sugar

2 tbsp. white vinegar

1/2 tsp garlic powder

Mix ingredients together, tasting to your desire. I don’t measure these ingredients, so it does slightly vary each time. The sauce is pretty close to the taste of the authentic donair sauce, made from evaporated milk, sugar, and vinegar. You can experiment to your own tastes. For a diabetic version you could use whatever sweetener you use in place of the sugar, but using the approximate ratio conversation. Also, I might try adding a tiny bit of vegan sour cream (Tofutti) to this next time. I constantly play around with the recipe, in an effort to improve on it. The sour cream would give it a slightly better texture, I’m hoping. I won't know until I try it.

Donair Meat:

1-3 packages beyond meat ground
(16 oz packs). The amount of meat used will depend on how many people you are cooking for and how much leftovers you desire. I think the beyond meat is in 16 oz packets. I like having leftovers and so will you ;)

3/4 cup bread crumbs (fine)

2 tablespoons ground flax I use this in place of egg to bind it all together. Real donair meat doesn't use egg at all, but that's because ground beef will bind if kneaded, where Beyond meat doesn't. Anyways, it is optional and does not contribute to the flavour of the donair. You will need to add a bit of water to the flax to make it sticky). If it does bind successfully, you might get away with the traditional loaf style, but I found they tend to overcook on the outside before reaching proper temp inside. I have only made this recipe a few times, so I'm still experimenting. Right now I prefer making it into thin patties, which can be fried to achieve a crispy texture, which I find gives it a more authentic texture.

2 tsp white pepper

1-2 tsp cayenne red pepper
(depending on your taste)

3 tablespoons ground oregano

1 tablespoons leaf oregano

3 tablespoons paprika

3 tablespoons onion powder

1 Table spoon(s) garlic powder

2-3 tsp salt


The spices here are a guestimate and should be adjusted to your tastes and also to the amount of meat used. I never measure, so be your own chef and decide what you like. These are the spices for traditional Halifax donairs, but the amounts are up to you. The most important thing to remember is the salt ratio. Approximately 1 teaspoon of salt per pound (500g) of meat is about right and the rest of the spices are pretty flexible.

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and knead until binded and sticky. Shape into patties, as I prefer. Normally you would bake donair meat in loaves, but because beyond meat requires a lot less cooking, I’ve been forming it into patties and frying them instead, as I mentioned. I slice it afterwards to put in my wrap.

Also run your pita under cold water for a second on both sides then lightly fry. This makes the pita soft and pliable to make your donair/gyro wrap.

Donairs are served in Halifax in heated pita bread, with sweet sauce, diced onions and tomatoes. Nothing more and nothing less! Enjoy!!

*
 
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shyvas

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I've made a reasonable gyro/donair using Beyond meat. It's not exactly lamb, but it definitely satiated my craving for a donair aka a gyro. I grew up in Halifax. We call them donairs there, and yes, they were originally made with lamb. I think most places use ground beef now. I found Beyond meat quite tasty for this recipe, and the beauty is, no animals die.

I'm still refining it, but this is my recipe if you want to try it:

Halifax Donairs with/Beyond Meat

Sauce:


2/3 cup veganaise

1/3 cup sugar

2 tbsp. white vinegar

1/2 tsp garlic powder

Mix ingredients together, tasting to your desire. I don’t measure these ingredients, so it does slightly vary each time. The sauce is pretty close to the taste of the authentic donair sauce, made from evaporated milk, sugar, and vinegar. You can experiment to your own tastes. For a diabetic version you could use whatever sweetener you use in place of the sugar, but using the approximate ratio conversation. Also, I might try adding a tiny bit of vegan sour cream (Tofutti) to this next time. I constantly play around with the recipe, in an effort to improve on it. The sour cream would give it a slightly better texture, I’m hoping. I won't know until I try it.

Donair Meat:

1-3 packages beyond meat ground
(16 oz packs). The amount of meat used will depend on how many people you are cooking for and how much leftovers you desire. I think the beyond meat is in 16 oz packets. I like having leftovers and so will you ;)

3/4 cup bread crumbs (fine)

2 tablespoons ground flax I use this in place of egg to bind it all together. Real donair meat doesn't use egg at all, but that's because ground beef will bind if kneaded, where Beyond meat doesn't. Anyways, it is optional and does not contribute to the flavour of the donair. You will need to add a bit of water to the flax to make it sticky). If it does bind successfully, you might get away with the traditional loaf style, but I found they tend to overcook on the outside before reaching proper temp inside. I have only made this recipe a few times, so I'm still experimenting. Right now I prefer making it into thin patties, which can be fried to achieve a crispy texture, which I find gives it a more authentic texture.

2 tsp white pepper

1-2 tsp cayenne red pepper
(depending on your taste)

3 tablespoons ground oregano

1 tablespoons leaf oregano

3 tablespoons paprika

3 tablespoons onion powder

1 Table spoon(s) garlic powder

2-3 tsp salt


The spices here are a guestimate and should be adjusted to your tastes and also to the amount of meat used. I never measure, so be your own chef and decide what you like. These are the spices for traditional Halifax donairs, but the amounts are up to you. The most important thing to remember is the salt ratio. Approximately 1 teaspoon of salt per pound (500g) of meat is about right and the rest of the spices are pretty flexible.

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and knead until binded and sticky. Shape into patties, as I prefer. Normally you would bake donair meat in loaves, but because beyond meat requires a lot less cooking, I’ve been forming it into patties and frying them instead, as I mentioned. I slice it afterwards to put in my wrap.

Also run your pita under cold water for a second on both sides then lightly fry. This makes the pita soft and pliable to make your donair/gyro wrap.

Donairs are served in Halifax in heated pita bread, with sweet sauce, diced onions and tomatoes. Nothing more and nothing less! Enjoy!!

*

I really like oregano and use it quite a lot when making Mediterranean style dishes but those mesures look like they should be tsp not tbs. Oregano is very potent and should be used a bit more sparsely compared to most other herbs.

Just checking. :)
 

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I double checked the original recipe with meat. While it sounds like a lot, it is correct, and the recipe flavour will appear quite weak without it, in my own experience. However, as I stated in the recipe, please feel free to make this your own recipe and edit it however you please. I promise these amounts won't ruin your first attempt, but again, use what you feel seems right for you. I encourage anyone that tries it to post opinions, and suggested improvements.

EDIT: Hmm, I checked some online recipes to compare. It would appear some are in teaspoons. So like one teaspoon oregano per pound of meat, but as I said, I have tested this recipe with less seasonings, and it seemed quite weak in flavour. So I suggest trying the recipe with less to start and see how it tastes, but please know that I'm 100% certain the given amounts won't ruin your donair meat.

At the end of the day, when searching out online recipes for something, I usually end up taking the best of multiple recipes and combine them into my own take on the dish. So with something like gyros and/or donairs, I probably used multiple recipes to start and adapted the measurements into my own that worked for me. Use what works for you!


*
 
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Emma JC

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@shyvas

At the end of the day, when searching out online recipes for something, I usually end up taking the best of multiple recipes and combine them into my own take on the dish. So with something like gyros and/or donairs, I probably used multiple recipes to start and adapted the measurements into my own that worked for me. Use what works for you!


*

that is exactly what I do - I look up numerous recipes and take the ingredients that I have/like and incorporate them

I have never loved lamb or its flavourings so I don't miss it but love seeing what everyone else does to replicate it.

Emma JC
 
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shyvas

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@shyvas
I double checked the original recipe with meat. While it sounds like a lot, it is correct, and the recipe flavour will appear quite weak without it, in my own experience. However, as I stated in the recipe, please feel free to make this your own recipe and edit it however you please. I promise these amounts won't ruin your first attempt, but again, use what you feel seems right for you. I encourage anyone that tries it to post opinions, and suggested improvements.

EDIT: Hmm, I checked some online recipes to compare. It would appear some are in teaspoons. So like one teaspoon oregano per pound of meat, but as I said, I have tested this recipe with less seasonings, and it seemed quite weak in flavour. So I suggest trying the recipe with less to start and see how it tastes, but please know that I'm 100% certain the given amounts won't ruin your donair meat.

At the end of the day, when searching out online recipes for something, I usually end up taking the best of multiple recipes and combine them into my own take on the dish. So with something like gyros and/or donairs, I probably used multiple recipes to start and adapted the measurements into my own that worked for me. Use what works for you!


*

@Veganite I was only checking as I didn't want you to ruin a few packs of BM. I never use recipes and cook as I go.:cool:
 
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silva

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Is oregano a typical gyro seasoning? I kinda hate oregano, but I used to love most gyros! Not all of them though...I remember some real disappointment!
 

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I don’t typically have a sweet-tooth, but I used to have meat-tooth often. I don’t miss most foods. I will admit, before I went vegan, I tried Jollibee’s chicken. I never made it to Toronto’s new Chick Fil A but I hear it’s like Wendy’s. I loved steak.

But for most of this year as a vegetarian-then-vegan, and due to lockdown, I have been missing carne asada tacos (which I learned how to cook vegan) and lamb gyro from Greek restaurants on the Danforth. Do any vegans (don’t have to be Greek - just a lover of Greek food) have any idea how to veganize lamb gyro? I can do the lemon potatoes with rosemary and all that. Rice with tomato paste. Just not sure how to make vegan lamb gyro.
.
In Toronto, there is a vegan middle eastern restaurant called "Eat Nabati": Menu | Eat Nabati . I don't see gyros on their menu, but it might be worth calling them anyway.

In Canada, the Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants serve meatless "chicken" options: https://www.kfc.ca/plant-based
.
 
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Veganite

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Is oregano a typical gyro seasoning?

From what I've read, traditional gyros do in fact have oregano. The recipes are similar, but different. Also, I believe gyros are served traditionally with tzatziki, where donairs are served with a sweet sauce, as described in my recipe.

If you enjoy gyros, I highly recommend trying my recipe. Seeing as you don't like oregano, definitely go with teaspoons though...or you could just look up a traditional gyro recipe and use those seasonings with Beyond meat.

The differences are quite subtle from what I understand. They are just the different terms for the same food, more or less. It's called a Gyro in Greek culture, a Shawarma in Lebanese, and Donair in Turkish culture. The spices/seasonings, sauces, and toppings may vary from each tradition/culture.


*
 
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shyvas

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From what I've read, traditional gyros do in fact have oregano. The recipes are similar, but different. Also, I believe gyros are served traditionally with tzatziki, where donairs are served with a sweet sauce, as described in my recipe.

If you enjoy gyros, I highly recommend trying my recipe. Seeing as you don't like oregano, definitely go with teaspoons though...or you could just look up a traditional gyro recipe and use those seasonings with Beyond meat.

The differences are quite subtle from what I understand. They are just the different terms for the same food, more or less. It's called a Gyro in Greek culture, a Shawarma in Lebanese, and Donair in Turkish culture. The spices/seasonings, sauces, and toppings may vary from each tradition/culture.


*

There seems to be quite a lot of discussion online concerning the three different types of food. Shawarma is quite popular over here and many small food outlets have a spit rotisserie and they serve the cooked meat in a type of pita bread. It would seem that the difference is the kind of meat and sauce that is used to make the above dishes.
I have noticed that this dish is very popular amongst men as it contains tons of greasy meat.

For anyone disliking oregano, I would suggest just omitting the herb as it's really overpowering and quite similar to sage. A tiny bit really goes a long way and will give the end result quite a strong taste.

 

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These Penzeys spice blends are my go to for what I imagine is a gyro, and they do have oregano-
Lamb seasoning blend-Turkish oregano, rosemary, cumin, celery, paprika, black pepper, onion, garlic, spearmint and ginger.

Turkish-salt, garlic, cumin, Tellicherry black pepper, Turkish oregano, sweet paprika, sumac, cayenne red pepper and cilantro.

Interesting that they include things i dislike, like oregano, cumin and cilantro, but all together work really well for me! Few spices do that

I may make another gyro seitan this weekend. Or maybe a white one?
 
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