Katie and I have had Greek-American restaurant style gyro meat as one of our longterm cooking goals. We’ve finally nailed it. I can’t claim credit for this, as all we really did was adjust a couple of other blogged recipes.
We started with the method from this site: https://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2010/06/greek-american-lamb-gyros-recipe.html
Then we made a few changes, especially the spice blend, which we took from this site:
and again, made a few changes.
So, to put it all together as we do it, here it is.
Greek Seasoning Blend
1.5 tbsp dried oregano
1 tbsp garlic powder
2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
2 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp dried mint
1.5 tbsp sweet paprika
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
Combine all the above ingredients, grind to a fine powder. Store to your preference.
1 lb ground meat (we prefer 50% lamb, 50% beef (90% lean beef)
2 tsp kosher salt
1 generous tbsp rendered (but solid and cold) bacon fat
3/4 of the total amount of seasoning blend created above
Mix together the meat, salt and seasoning blend in a bowl, then transfer to a ziplock bag and refrigerate.
Puree the onion in a food processor. Then wring the onion out in a clean towel or cheesecloth. You want to remove as much liquid as possible. Return the onion to the food processor.
When the meat mixture has chilled at least an hour (preferably two), place it in the food processor along with the onion, and add the bacon fat. It is imperative that the meat and fat are quite cold. Process until you have a very fine (and rather unpleasant looking) paste, and the fat and spices are evenly distributed through the meat mixture.
Pre-heat the oven to 300F, and put the rack in the middle.
Form the meat into a loaf about 1.5″ tall by 5″ wide and 8″ long. Place the loaf on a pre-greased foil covered rimmed cookie sheet.
Bake until it registers about 155F on an instant read thermometer (about 30 minutes).
Remove from the oven, let stand about 10 minutes, then slice the meat about 1/8th” thick, replace on the cookie sheet, broil on the top rack about 5 minutes (until browned). The top side should be slightly dry and crunchy, while the bottom side will remain soft and juicy. It is pretty close to the effect of a vertical rotisserie.