Cooking a tasty Greek meal for Father’s Day is a simple way to show dad how much he means to the family. As the days get warmer, grilling outdoors is a great option. Try the following souvlakia along with dad’s favorite side dishes. The Greek yogurt dessert which follows combines some classic flavors for a quick sweet treat to round out the meal.
2 pounds chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
1/2 cup Greek extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon Greek sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
Bamboo skewers, soaked in water for 15 minutes, or metal skewers
2-3 plum tomatoes, sliced
1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
Tzatziki (recipe follows)
Feta, crumbled (optional)
Place the chicken in a large, nonreactive, mixing bowl. Add the olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, oregano, and garlic, and toss to coat the chicken pieces. Cover with plastic wrap and marinade for at least half an hour or up to four hours in the refrigerator. Stir 2-3 times while the chicken is marinading and return to the refrigerator. Thread the chicken pieces on the soaked bamboo or metal skewers. When ready, prepare the grill. Place the marinaded, skewered chicken on the grill and brush with the remaining marinade. Grill over medium heat, turning the chicken pieces on all sides until done, or the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. A meat thermometer stuck in the thickest part of the chicken piece should give you an accurate temperature. Once the chicken is grilled, remove it to a serving plate and allow to rest for about 10 minutes. Enjoy on the stick with a piece of bread or if preferred, remove the grilled chicken from skewers and serve with pita bread warmed on the grill and top with sliced tomatoes, onions, tzatziki, and feta, if using.
1 large seedless cucumber, grated coarsely
Greek sea salt
2 cups Greek yogurt
4-6 garlic cloves to taste, minced
3 tablespoons Greek extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
Place grated cucumber in a strainer over a bowl, sprinkle with a 1/4 teaspoon salt and let stand for 30 minutes to an hour to drain off the liquid. If preferred, place in cheesecloth and after an hour squeeze out any excess liquid. Place the cucumber in a mixing bowl with the yogurt, garlic, olive oil, lemon, and dill, and toss to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt, if needed. Cover tightly and chill in the refrigerator for 15 minutes before serving.
Greek Yogurt Bites
2 cups Greek yogurt
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons Greek honey
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
A pinch of Greek sea salt
3/4 cup ground toasted almonds, as needed
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and prepare mini muffin pan (24-cup) with mini muffin paper baking cups and set aside. In a mixing bowl, beat the yogurt, egg, vanilla extract, and honey, until smooth. Add the flour and salt and beat well. Spoon the mixture into the prepared muffin cups by about a tablespoonful or so and bake in the preheated oven until set about 15-20 minutes. Allow to cool, then chill in the refrigerator for an hour or freeze for 30 minutes and then remove from paper baking cups. Coat each yogurt bite with the ground almonds and place on a serving platter. Drizzle with additional Greek honey, if preferred.