Skewered Souvlaki is a really easy BBQ pork recipe, marinade the meat in olive oil and red wine to ensure wonderful results on the barbecue grill.
In Greece, Souvlaki is available on every street corner, it’s a classic kebab take-away (the equivalent of the hamburger) and with a little marinade time it can be reproduced on the barbecue.
Technically this doesn't just have to be a BBQ pork recipe, the word souvlaki is a derivation of the Medieval Greek word for skewer, it can be made from many meats and some chefs may use lamb, chicken and sometimes swordfish. Here you can read more about the different derivations of souvlaki.
In some places they are referred to as Gyros (pronounced yeer-oss) which refers to the giant vertical spit roaster on which they are cooked. A lot of street vendors will also cook souvlaki as we are going to do, on a kebab skewer.
Typically they are served wrapped up in grease proof paper but I hope you will forgive my presentation in the picture above which slightly less traditional but certainly less messy.
A great compliment to Souvlaki is the yogurt sauce Tzaziki , again easily made up with cucumber, garlic and olive oil – something to do while the marinade is working its magic. Do it early on though because Tzaziki needs an hour or so in the refrigerator to chill and let the flavors combine....and don’t forget to soak some bamboo skewers.
Note:- I have put a link in to pitta breads because I have a recipe for you to make your own. If you are wanting to do so then this is the place to start, otherwise you can simply buy the breads down the supermarket.
Serves:- 8 people
Preparation Time:- 10 minutes
Marinade Time:- 1 hour
Cooking Time:- 10 minutes
Total Time:- 1 hour 20 minutes
Make up the marinade in a bowl using the olive oil, red wine, juice of two of the lemons, salt and pepper and throw in the pork. Cover and and allow to marinade for one hour. Don't refrigerate during the marinade otherwise the olive oil will turn semi solid and stop the marinade from working.
If you're going to make up your own tzaziki then now is the time to follow this part of the recipe.
When the marinade time is complete, thread the pork onto wooden skewers leaving plenty of space between the cubes. Don't pack the cubes onto the skewers otherwise the heat from the grill can't get around the meat and you'll end up cooking the meat for longer and overcooking the outside.
Grill your souvlaki BBQ pork kebabs for about 10 minutes turning occasionally to ensure the kebab is cooked on all sides.
When the kebabs are cooked, place the pittas on the grill and warm them through taking care not to toast them. Depending on the heat from your grill they'll need only and minute on each side.
When the meat is done, dip the kebabs in a long glass containing the remaining lemon juice (or brush it on) and then holding a warm pitta bread in one hand, place the kebab on the pitta, grab the meat using your pitta as a glove and pull the pork off the skewer by grabbing the pitta and meat and removing the skewer. Sprinkle with oregano and salt, add some lettuce tomato and chopped onion, spoon on some tzaziki and your souvlaki BBQ pork is ready to eat.
If you really want to get into the Greek mood with this BBQ pork recipe then you could try a glass of Retsina but I have to say for some reason Retsina tastes better in Greece – the pine resin flavor just doesn’t travel well in my view. I’d recommend searching out a bottle of wine from Crete.
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