Archive for the ‘Greek’ Category

Vegan Gyros

Today I made vegan gyros for the first time. They turned out quite well and more gyro-ish than I expected.

First, I made some vegan feta cheese following a recipe I found online:

Basically, it’s marinated tofu, and basically, it tasted like marinated tofu. That’s not a problem for me since I like marinated tofu, but this didn’t taste much like feta to me, and it really didn’t feel like feta at all. It was good, but not in a feta-esque way.

Next I made some vegan tzatziki sauce, following another recipe I found online:

Oooo, this was really good. It tasted very similar to “real” tzatziki sauce, although it was a bit thicker than any tzatziki sauce I’ve had before. I didn’t know that if you ran silken tofu through a blender it ended up with a consistency like that of sour cream. Live and learn.

For the meat I cut up some Field Roast Co. vegan Italian sausages and pan fried them in olive oil:

This worked even better than I expected. The feel of the fried sausages was amazingly similar to that of gyro meat, and the Italian sausage flavor fit in surprisingly well with the other gyro indgredients.

I put the meat, sauce, and feta on a pita, added some sliced onion and chopped tomato, and voila! A vegan gyro:

It really does look like a “real” gyro, doesn’t it? And it tasted pretty much like one too, much more so than I was expecting. Usually vegan versions of carnivorous dishes don’t taste much like the dishes they are imitating, although sometimes they taste good in their own way. (And sometimes they just taste awful.) Of all the vegan imitation dishes I have made this is the one that turned out the most similar to the carnivorous dish it was imitating.

For what it’s worth, I estimate that it cost about $3.00 to make one of these gyros. That’s a pretty good price for a gyro, certainly lower than I’ve ever paid for one in a restaurant. And for those who (needlessly) worry about protein in vegetarian and vegan diets, I estimate that each of these gyros has about 40 grams of protein: 25g from the sausage, 8g from the pita, and about 7g from the tofu in the feta and tzatziki sauce. The last time I checked the daily RDA of protein is 46g for adult women and 56g for adult men, so 40g is quite a lot.

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