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Grilled Lamb Shwarma

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“A Food and Wine staff favorite. Recipe courtesy of Chris Hanna. Shwarma is basically thinly sliced roasted meat and condiments, wrapped in a pita. It is a very popular street food throughout the Middle East. Here, the lamb should really marinate overnight in the spicy, garlicky marinade before grilling. Marinating for up to three days is even better! You can ask your butcher to butterfly the leg of lamb. I will also post a separate recipe for homemade pita bread (although it is perfectly fine to use store-bought pita). *Cook time does not include marinating*”
1hr 30mins

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Mix 1/2 cup of oil with the garlic, lemon juice, cumin, cardamom, Aleppo pepper (or crushed red pepper), 1 t. of black pepper and 1 1/2 T. of salt.
  2. Set the lamb on a rimmed baking sheet and coat it with the marinade. Cover and refrigerate overnight or up to 3 days. The longer it marinates, the more flavorful and tender the meat.
  3. On the day of grilling, you can go ahead and make the Yogurt-Tahini Sauce:.
  4. Blend the tahini paste, lemon juice and olive oil, in a food processor, until smooth. Add the yogurt and blend the mixture completely. Scrape the tahini sauce into a bowl; stir in the cumin and pepper. Season with salt, to taste. Garnish with parsley.
  5. Preheat a grill - medium-high heat.
  6. In a large skillet, heat 1 T. of oil over medium-low , and add the bell peppers. Cover and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer this to a serving bowl.
  7. Heat the remaining 1 T. of oil in the same skillet and add the onions. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the onions are lightly browned - about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Tranfer the onions to a different serving bowl.
  8. Grill the leg of lamb over medium-high heat, turning often, until an instant read thermometer (inserted into the thickest part of the meat) reads 130 degrees F. for medium-rare. This should take approximately 25 minutes.
  9. Transfer the lamb to a cutting board and let it rest for about 10 minutes. This is very important! Then, thinly slice the lamb across the grain and serve with the peppers, onions, yogurt-tahini sauce and pita bread.

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