Monday, February 13, 2012

Greek Meatball Sandwich with Tzatziki


I had a hankering for Greek food, and found a recipe for meatballs that looked good. This recipe uses grated zucchini to fill out the meatballs and add some veggies to the mix.

Greek Meatball Sandwich with Tzatziki
(from here and here)

Meatballs:
1.25 lbs 93% lean ground turkey
1 cup zucchini, grated and liquid squeezed out
2 sliced whole wheat bread
1/4 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
1 large egg
2-3 cloves garlic, grated
1/4 red onion, grated
2 tbsp fresh oregano, chopped (1 tbsp if using dry)
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
2 tbsp chopped fresh mint, chopped (optional - I'm not a huge fan of mint)
1 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp fresh pepper
about 1 tsp worth of cooking spray

Tzatziki:
8 oz fat free greek yogurt (I used Fage)
1 cucumber, peeled
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tbsp fresh dill, chopped
kosher salt and fresh pepper

==

I made the tzatziki first because the longer it sits in the fridge, the better it tastes.

Peel a cucumber and slice it in half.


Use a teaspoon or tablespoon to scoop out the seeds.


Finely grate it on a box grater.


Put the grated cucumber in a fine mesh strainer over a bowl and press the pulp to get as much liquid as you can out.


Save the juice for use as a nice cocktail mixer. (I recommend using gin.)


Add the 8 oz of Greek yogurt, crushed garlic clove, 1 tsp lemon juice, 1 tbsp fresh dill, kosher salt and fresh pepper. 


Stir well to combine and store in the fridge until dinner.


==

I grated the zucchini on the coarse side of the box grater and squeezed the juice out of it the same way as the cucumber from above. I did not however, save the juice.


Tear up your 2 slices of bread and add the breadcrumbs to a bowl.


Add 1 large egg, salt and pepper, and the zucchini. 



Add the 2-3 cloves grated garlic and 1/4 red onion, grated.


Finally add the 2 tbsp fresh oregano and 1/4 cup fresh parsley.


Stir well to combine.

Stash in the fridge until you're ready to cook. It'll work better slightly chilled.


==

Meanwhile, you can prep the toppings for the pita.

Tomatoes

Red Onion
==

When you're ready for dinner, portion each meatball using a 1/4 cup measure.

Add to a non-stick pan over medium heat.


Cook the meatballs, turning when they brown.


I turned them on each side.


Keep turning until they are done.


Use a thermometer if you are unsure of doneness.

You can also cut them in half and speed up the cooking process. They did take a bit of time to cook due to their thickness.


Serve cut in half for easier eating inside of a pita, slathered with tzatziki and topped with tomatoes and onion.

Overall, this was a pretty good meal. The meatballs were hearty and satisfying and the tzatziki was great. Not quite as good as a gyro, but a much quicker alternative.


Enjoy!

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