Now, I was never a fan of meat and I almost never miss it. But every once in a while, I have a hankering for a donair. The vegetarian recipe, I hoped, could be veganised.
Donairs, if you've never heard of them, are a Turkish-inspired meatloaf-esque dish, served in a pita with raw onions, tomato and donair sauce. They're similar to Greek gyro and Arabic shawarma. They're messy and utterly delicious. And I'm happy to say, my modified vegan version was more than satisfying.
2x 1 lb packages of prepared TVP such as Yves Ground Round
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp ground chili pepper (I ended up dumping what I had left, which was a bit more than a tsp)
3 tsp oregano (the original recipe used only 1 tsp, but I found that the garlic was overpowering, so I upped the amount of oregano; also, I used Italian and Greek oregano)
1 tsp thyme (the original didn't call for thyme, but I love thyme)
2 tsp onion powder
1 tsp salt
3-5 tsp garlic powder (I don't have garlic powder; I used 4 tsp garlic granules, which was a bit too strong)
1/2 cup finely ground cracker crumbs (I didn't have this or breadcrumbs, so I used oats)
Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Place in a greased loaf pan and bake at 350′F for 1 hour.
Meat donairs are made of compressed ground meat and are shaved into long strips. This version will be crumbly. Nonetheless, it's still delicious.
1 250 ml container of Belsoy (the original called for 1/2 cup evaporated milk)
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp garlic powder (I used 1/2 tsp garlic granules)
salt and pepper to taste (the original recipe called for neither)
Whisk together the above ingredients. Despite accidentally using twice as much liquid as the original recipe called for), I found the sauce to be sufficiently thick. And the 2 to 1 ratio of liquid to sugar was more than sweet enough.
Warm pita in oven. Just until they're warm and supple. Don't heat too much or they'll be crispy. You'll need one pita per donair. As this dish is a fast food, "unhealthy" dish, it's traditionally served with white pita. However, my organic grocery carries whole wheat pita made by a local Lebanese bakery.
Add some of the donair "meat" mixture into the middle of the pita, add some chopped tomato and sliced raw onion and lots of sauce. Fold the bottom up and the two sides in.
You could also add a slice or two of Tofutti mozzarella slices. And I sprinkled some Greek oregano on top of the sauce before wrapping.