Halal Guys Copycat

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Note to self: The other day I was looking through my snaps and came across a bunch of people eating Halal Guys. It made me crave it sooo much! Their white sauce is a must and I usually get an extra packet to just drench the entire thing in it. This past year they opened up a location in my hometown in Florida and everyone was super stoked. I remember for the first few weeks the line being out the door because of the anticipation.

Now I think overall while yeah it’s good this isn’t a direct copycat per se. I tried finding a bunch of different recipes and combined the best part of each to make one solid recipe. I think the most noticeable difference it the actual gyro. Tbh the meat sort of reminds me of kabobs. This would actually be a good recipe to them, the flavor is on point and very similar to Pakistani seikh kabobs, and there’s a softness to it. You can totally just shape them on skewers and bake in the oven or sauté on a pan.

The other thing was the white sauce. I think there was too much dill? or ranch? I feel like ranch already has dill and adding more overpowered it a bit. It was still good, don’t get me wrong, totally went with the flavors of the gyro and added that moisture but it wasn’t a true copycat you know?

The rice though was on point I think, simple, easy, and good. Overall I would definitely give it a shot if you don’t have a halal guys near you, I think if I would make it again I would make it into kebabs and put it over the rice with the white sauce. Or even use the gyro meat to make a paratha roll or stuff it inside a naan! Noms!

Ingredients:

Gyro Spice Blend

  • 1 tbsp coriander
  • ½ tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp oregano
  • 1 tbsp basil (or parsley)
  • 2 tsp thyme
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tbsp paprika

Gyro Meat

  • ½ lb ground beef
  • ½ lb ground lamb
  • ½ of an onion roughly chopped
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • All of the gyro spice blend from above
  • ½ cup of breadcrumbs

White Sauce

  • ½ cup of mayo
  • 1 Tbsp of prepared horseradish
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp cracked black pepper
  • ½ Tbsp lemon juice
  • ⅛ cup of white vinegar
  • ½ cup of ranch dressing
  • Half of a ⅓ cup of plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 Tbsp white sugar
  • 1½ tsp dry dill weed

Rice

  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ¼ tsp ground cumin
  • 1½ cups long-grain or Basmati rice
  • 2½ cups chicken broth
  • Kosher salt and black pepper

Directions:

Gyro Spice Blend:

  1. In a small bowl add 1 tbsp ground coriander, ½ tbsp Garlic powder, 2 tsp dried Oregano, 1 tbsp Basil, 2 tsp Thyme, 2 tbsp Chili powder, 1 tsp Cinnamon, and ½ tbsp Paprika. Mix well and set aside.

Gyro Meat:

  1. Combine 1 lb ground beef and 1 lb ground lamb with ½ tsp of kosher salt, ½ teaspoon of ground black pepper and all of the gyro spice blend.
  2. Using your hands (feel free to wear latex gloves) mix the meat and the spices together
  3. Form it into a tight ball, cover, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  4. After at least an hour and you are ready to start making the gyro, pre-heat the oven to 300 – 325 degrees F.
  5. Roughly chop half of an onion and place in a food processor with 2 tsp minced garlic. Blend until the onions are thoroughly pureed.
  6. Add in the cold ground beef (do not let it get to room temperature)
  7. Blend everything together very well. You will need to scrape down the sides of the food processor using a rubber spatula and blend the meat again. You want the meat to end up looking like a thick paste without any visible unblended pieces.
  8. Form into a flat loaf – I like to put the meat onto a piece of wax paper, and flattening it into a 3″ high slab rectangle. I cover it with another piece of wax and use a rolling pin to flatten it out. (You can also use your hands)
  9. Make sure it is uniformly flat all around with a very slight indentation in the middle of the loaf. This will help keep the loaf from bunching up towards the middle when it cooks.
  10. Bake the loaf in a dish with raised edges, because it will leak grease!) at 350 for about an hour.
  11. Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before slicing thin.

White Sauce:

  1. In a small bowl mix ½ cup of mayo, 1 Tbsp. of prepared horseradish, ¼ tsp. salt, ¼ tsp. cracked black pepper, ½ Tbsp. lemon juice, ⅛ cup of white vinegar, ½ cup of Ranch dressing, Half of a ⅓ cup of plain Greek yogurt, Half of a ⅓ cup of sour cream, 1 Tbsp. white sugar, 1½ tsp. dry dill weed.
  2. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

For the rice:

  1. Melt the butter over medium heat in a large pot.
  2. Add the turmeric and cumin and cook until fragrant but not browned, about 1 minute.
  3. Add the rice and stir to coat. Cook, stirring frequently, until the rice is lightly toasted, about 4 minutes.
  4. Add the chicken broth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  5. Raise the heat to high and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 15 minutes without disturbing.
  6. Remove from the heat and allow to rest until the water is completely absorbed and the rice is tender, about 15 minutes.

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Original recipes adapted from these sites: http://gothamist.com/2013/03/16/behold_heres_the_recipe_for_white_h.php

http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2011/12/serious-eats-halal-cart-style-chicken-and-rice-white-sauce-recipe.html

http://www.geniuskitchen.com/recipe/gyros-an-authentic-recipe-for-making-them-at-home-285900

https://manfuelblog.com/2015/08/23/easy-homemade-gyro-meat-recipe/

http://www.geniuskitchen.com/topic/greek/recipe/gyros-spice-mix-with-a-kick-58843

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