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Greek gyros street food is a delicious and hearty dish that locals and visitors enjoy. It consists of slices of rotisserie-cooked pork, chicken, or lamb on a flatbread with tomatoes, onions, lettuce, and tzatziki sauce. Gyros street food is often served with fries and/or fresh vegetables.
The most popular way to eat Greek gyros street food is to wrap it in pita bread for a warm, flavorful sandwich. However, some enjoy eating it as an open-faced sandwich or adding extra ingredients like olives, feta cheese, and other vegetables. No matter how you choose to prepare your Greek street food classic, you are sure to love the unique flavors and textures of this popular street food.
How is this Greek word pronounced?
Gyro, which is pronounced “GHEE-ro” in Greek, is derived from the Greek word “gheereezo,” which means “to turn.” As previously said, it’s a rotating-piled mound of thinly sliced meat, either lamb, hog, beef, or a mix of the three, with later-day variations including chicken and fish.
The layers meld together as the tightly packed stack roasts upright, and the grill person manning the gyro rotisserie cuts off paper-thin slices, which he or she fixes in a pita wrap with tomatoes, raw red onions, parsley or lettuce, Greek yogurt or tzatziki, and occasionally fried potatoes and a sprinkling of paprika or cayenne pepper.
A brief history of Gyros street food
For years, historians have questioned the origins of the gyroscope. According to food historians, the gyro first came to Greece in the early 1920s as a refugee from Asia Minor, mostly from Istanbul and Izmir. Many of these folks were of Greek descent, and they carried the gyro tradition with them. However, history has it that the first gyro handlers in Athens were of Armenian descent.
It was rather typical for these immigrants to create modest businesses, mostly in Athens, contributing to the food’s appeal. As the meal became popular in Athens, it expanded to other parts of Greece. Greeks who left Greece for other nations, such as the United States, eventually carried the meal with them, and the custom persisted in places such as the United States and Canada.
What makes gyros unique?
Chef Dimitris Kokkalidis (Chef in “The Fat Greek” on Copenhagen’s Ryesgade street proves that Greek street food can easily exist in one of the world’s toughest fine dining scenes. And he gets right to the very heart of it by offering plain and utterly delicious gyros).
“Gyros, in our view, is unique since it combines a few of your favorite foods (meat/chips/sauce/salad) in a wrap that you can eat at a table or on the run”!
Gyro is found anywhere there are Greeks, and it is unquestionably one of the most popular foods among travelers. Of course, selling this delectable street wrap has spread beyond the mom-and-pop sphere and into the worlds of American chains (some owned by Greeks) and the internet. In Greece, there are hundreds of internet sites where you may purchase a gyro for home delivery in 2019. Gyros remain a durable emblem of Greek informal dining and street cuisine in the United States and internationally.
Gyros are made by Greeks, Arabs, and Turks equally. This delightful street meal is known as doner kebab in Turkey and is made with lamb or beef. The Arabs call it shawarma, which may be made with beef, lamb, goat, or chicken. In some areas of the Arab world, gyro/doner kebab/shawarma is served with a thin, delectable sprinkling of seasoned pistachios instead of yogurt or tzatziki. Yum. That is universal for delectable!
Whether grabbing a quick street food snack or sitting down to enjoy an unforgettable street food feast, Greek gyros street food is sure to be one of the highlights of your experience. Try it today and discover why this street food classic is beloved by locals and visitors alike.