Chicken Gyros

from melskitchencafe.com

*Note: Keep in mind this recipe requires straining yogurt which may take overnight and marinating chicken which will take 1-2 hours so plan ahead!

*Makes enough chicken and tzatziki for approximately 4-6 gyros.

For the tzatziki sauce:

16 oz. plain yogurt (not fat free unless it is Oikos or Fage or another Greek-type yogurt)

1/2 hothouse cucumber or 1 regular cucumber, peeled and seeded (I used 1/2 of an English cucumber)

2-3 cloves garlic, pressed through a garlic press (or finely minced)

1 teaspoon red wine vinegar

Salt and pepper

Squeeze of fresh lemon juice

Extra virgin olive oil

For the chicken:

4 cloves garlic, smashed

Juice of 1 lemon

2 teaspoons red wine vinegar

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 heaping tablespoons plain yogurt

1 tablespoon dried oregano

Salt and pepper

1 1/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed

To assemble:

Soft wrap bread (or pita bread)

Fresh tomatoes, seeded and diced

Red onion, sliced thin

To make the tzatziki sauce, strain the yogurt using cheesecloth over a bowl. Let strain for several hours or overnight, if possible, to remove as much moisture as possible. (You won't believe how much liquid drains from the yogurt - it makes the yogurt much thicker and creamier. If you want to splurge on Greek yogurt, like Oikos or Fage, you won't need to strain it like this.)

Shred the cucumber. Wrap in a towel a squeeze to remove as much water as possible. Mix together the strained yogurt, shredded cucumber, garlic, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper to taste, and lemon juice. Drizzle lightly with olive oil. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving to allow the flavors to meld.

To prepare the chicken, combine the garlic, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, olive oil, yogurt, oregano, and salt and pepper to taste in a medium bowl. Whisk together until mixed well. Add the chicken pieces to the bowl and mix well to coat. Cover and refrigerate for about 1 hour.

Cook the chicken as desired, either in the skillet or with the broiler. (I sauted them in a hot skillet.) Once the chicken is completely cooked through, transfer to a plate and let rest for 5 minutes.

Heat pitas. Top with chicken, tzatziki sauce, diced tomatoes and sliced onions. Serve immediately.