chicken souvlaki

Most people’s best food memories, aside from the childhood dinner table ones, come from a holiday experience. For me it was the perfect steak in New York, an amazing chocolate dessert in Florida, or even a lamb chop in the Peak District. The good times mingle with the food, being with friends and family, and a rose-tint descends on the memory. Back home, in your familiar surroundings you try and recreate that magic to capture those good feelings.

That’s the idea behind James Villas’ #MyHolidayDish campaign. Working with the brilliant Jo Pratt, she came up with holiday-inspired dinners such as Puglia Pasta Con Le Cozze, Rhodian Whole Baked Snapper and Cypriot Souvlaki. Here’s my take on it, a chicken souvlaki.

chicken souvlaki

I took Jo’s recipe and swapped the pork for chicken, added my own pickled onions and have included a recipe for flatbreads if you want it. If it’s too much faff, buy your own flatbreads and tzatziki.

You can find Jo’s original recipe here, or here she is on video cooking the kebab:

chicken souvlaki


  • 8 chicken thighs
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoons dried paprika
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and crushed
  • 1 red onion peeled and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • Pinch sugar

For the flatbreads:

  • 300 g self raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 300 g natural yoghurt

For the tzatziki:

  • 1 cucumber halved and deseeded
  • 200 natural yoghurt
  • Small handful of chopped parsley
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar


  • For the chicken, mix the chicken, lemon, oregano, paprika and garlic together with a tablespoon of oil thoroughly, season with salt and pepper and cover. Marinate for at least 30 minutes.
  • For the flatbreads, mix the flour, baking powder and yoghurt with a pinch of salt to a smooth dough. Cover for 30 minutes.
  • For the tzatziki, grate the cucumber and dust with salt. Leave to drain in a sieve for 10 minutes, then squeeze out as much of the moisture as you can. Combine with all the other dip ingredients.
  • For the onion pickle, cover the red onion in vinegar and a pinch each of salt and sugar.
  • Get your grill really high, or light the barbecue. When hot, skewer your chicken and cook for 15 minutes or until cooked through. Leave to rest on one side while you portion the flatbread dough into 8 balls. Press into thin circles and cook for a minute or two on each side until puffed up. Serve the meat in the breads and top with lovely pickles, tzatziki and your favourite salad.

James Villas kindly provided the ingredients to cook this with.


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