Easy Pork Souvlaki Marinade Red Wine Vinegar


Over time, Pork Souvlaki evolved into a beloved street food item that captured the hearts and taste buds of Greeks and visitors alike. It became a staple in Greek cuisine and is now enjoyed as a versatile dish that can be savoured at home, in tavernas, or at festive gatherings.

The marinated pork is then threaded onto skewers, allowing for even cooking and imparting a subtle smoky flavour. Traditionally, Souvlaki skewers were made from sturdy wooden sticks, but today, metal skewers are more commonly used. The skewers are then grilled over an open flame or on a hot grill, creating a mouthwatering aroma and giving the meat a charred, caramelized exterior.

The taste of Pork Souvlaki is an irresistible medley of flavours. The tender pork, infused with the vibrant marinade, boasts a delightful balance of tanginess from the lemon, earthiness from the herbs, and a subtle smokiness from the grilling process. The combination of these flavours results in a harmonious dish that is both refreshing and satisfying.

Ingredients For Making Pork Souvlaki

To prepare a delicious batch of Pork Souvlaki, you’ll need the following major ingredients:

  • Pork Shoulder or Pork Tenderloin: 1.5 pounds (680 grams), cut into bite-sized cubes: Pork shoulder is often preferred due to its marbling and tenderness. However, pork tenderloin works well too, offering a leaner option.
  • Olive Oil: 1/4 cup (60 ml): Extra virgin olive oil is recommended for its rich flavour and quality. It contributes to the marinade and helps keep the meat moist during grilling.
  • Lemon Juice: 1/4 cup (60 ml): Freshly squeezed lemon juice adds a refreshing tanginess to the marinade, enhancing the overall flavour profile of the dish.
  • Garlic: 4 cloves, minced: Garlic infuses the marinade with its distinct aroma and savoury undertones, complementing the pork beautifully.
  • Dried Oregano: 1 tablespoon: The earthy and slightly bitter notes of dried oregano are a quintessential component of Pork Souvlaki’s flavour profile.
  • Dried Thyme: 1 teaspoon: Thyme adds a subtle herbaceous flavour to the marinade, enhancing the overall taste of the dish.
  • Salt: 1 teaspoon (adjust to taste): Salt helps to season the meat and balance the flavours. Adjust the amount according to personal preference.
  • Black Pepper: 1/2 teaspoon (adjust to taste): Freshly ground black pepper adds a touch of spiciness and depth to the marinade.
  • Paprika: 1/2 Teaspoon: Paprika imparts a mild smokiness and a hint of sweetness to the marinade, enhancing the overall flavour profile. It’s an optional ingredient but highly recommended.
  • Red Wine Vinegar: 2 Tablespoons: Red wine vinegar can be added to the marinade for an extra tangy kick and a subtle acidity. It complements the other flavours harmoniously.
  • Wooden or Metal Skewers: Quantity as needed: Wooden or metal skewers are used to thread the marinated pork cubes for grilling. Soak wooden skewers in water for 30 minutes before use to prevent burning.

Step-by-Step Guide Pork Souvlaki Recipe Cooking Direction

Step-by-Step Guide to Cooking Pork Souvlaki:

Prepare the Marinade

In a bowl, combine olive oil, lemon juice, minced garlic, dried oregano, dried thyme, salt, black pepper, and paprika (if using). Whisk the ingredients together until well blended. This aromatic marinade will infuse the pork with a burst of flavour.

Marinate the Pork

Place the pork cubes in a shallow dish or a resealable plastic bag. Pour the marinade over the pork, ensuring that all the pieces are well coated. Massage the marinade into the meat, making sure it is evenly distributed. Cover the dish or seal the bag and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or preferably overnight. This allows the flavours to meld and the pork to tenderize.

Preheat the Grill

Preheat your grill to medium-high heat, around 400°F (200°C). This will ensure that the pork cooks evenly and gets that irresistible charred exterior.

Thread the Skewers

If using wooden skewers, make sure to soak them in water for about 30 minutes to prevent them from burning on the grill. Remove the marinated pork from the refrigerator and thread the pieces onto the skewers, leaving a little space between each cube. This allows the heat to circulate and cook the meat evenly.

Grill the Pork

Place the skewers on the preheated grill and close the lid. Cook for about 10-12 minutes, turning occasionally to ensure even cooking and a beautiful char on all sides. The pork should be cooked through with a slight hint of pink in the centre, and the exterior should have a delicious caramelized crust.

Rest and Serve

Once the pork is cooked to perfection, remove the skewers from the grill and let them rest for a few minutes. This allows the juices to be redistributed, ensuring a tender and juicy bite. 

Serve the Pork Souvlaki skewers on a platter with warm pita bread, tzatziki sauce, sliced tomatoes, onions, and a sprinkle of fresh herbs.

Equipment For Preparing Pork Souvlaki Recipe

To make Pork Souvlaki, you will need the following specific equipment:

  • Grill or Barbecue: A grill or barbecue is essential for cooking the Pork Souvlaki. You can use a charcoal grill, gas grill, or an electric grill depending on your preference and availability. Ensure that your grill is in good working condition and properly cleaned before use.
  • Skewers: Skewers are used to thread the marinated pork cubes for grilling. There are two main types of skewers you can use.
  • Mixing Bowl: A mixing bowl is needed to prepare the marinade. Choose a bowl that is large enough to hold all the ingredients and allows for easy mixing.
  • Whisk or Spoon: You’ll need a whisk or a spoon to mix the marinade ingredients thoroughly. A whisk helps blend the ingredients more evenly, but a spoon can also do the job.
  • Shallow Dish or Resealable Plastic Bag: A shallow dish or a resealable plastic bag is used to marinate the pork. The dish should be large enough to hold the pork cubes in a single layer or accommodate the plastic bag with enough room for the marinade to coat the meat evenly.
  • Tongs: Tongs are useful for flipping the skewers while grilling and removing them from the grill once the Pork Souvlaki is cooked. They provide a firm grip and help prevent any accidents while handling hot skewers.
  • Serving Platter: A serving platter or plate is needed to present the cooked Pork Souvlaki beautifully. Choose a platter that is large enough to hold the skewers and any additional side dishes you may be serving.
  • Knife and Cutting Board: A knife and cutting board are required for preparing the pork by cutting it into bite-sized cubes. You may also need them for slicing any additional garnishes or vegetables.

If you’re using a grill, a grill brush or scraper is handy for cleaning the grill grates before and after use. This ensures that any leftover residue or charred bits are removed, providing a clean surface for grilling.

Easy Pork Souvlaki Marinade Red Wine Vinegar

Pork Souvlaki is a traditional Greek dish consisting of tender, marinated pork cubes threaded onto skewers and grilled to perfection. Bursting with Mediterranean flavours, this dish offers a delightful combination of tanginess, earthiness, and a slight smoky char. It is commonly served with warm pita bread, tzatziki sauce, and fresh vegetables.
Prep Time 2 hours
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 12 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Greek
Servings 4 People
Calories 300 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • Pork Shoulder or Pork Tenderloin: 1.5 lbs (680 g), cut into bite-sized cubes
  • Olive Oil: 1/4 cup (60 ml)
  • Lemon Juice: 1/4 cup (60 ml)
  • Garlic: 4 cloves, minced
  • Dried Oregano: 1 tbsp
  • Dried Thyme: 1 tsp
  • Salt: 1 tsp (adjust to taste)
  • Black Pepper: 1/2 tsp (adjust to taste)
  • Paprika (optional): 1/2 tsp
  • Red Wine Vinegar (optional): 2 tbsp
  • Wooden or Metal Skewers: Quantity as needed

Instructions
 

  • In a mixing bowl, combine olive oil, lemon juice, minced garlic, dried oregano, dried thyme, salt, black pepper, paprika (if using), and red wine vinegar (if using). Whisk the ingredients together to create the marinade.
  • Place the pork cubes in a shallow dish or resealable plastic bag. Pour the marinade over the pork, ensuring all pieces are coated evenly. Massage the marinade into the meat. Cover the dish or seal the bag and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or preferably overnight.
  • If using wooden skewers, soak them in water for about 30 minutes to prevent burning. Thread the marinated pork cubes onto the skewers, leaving space between each cube.
  • Preheat the grill to medium-high heat (around 400°F or 200°C). Place the skewers on the grill and close the lid. Cook for 10-12 minutes, turning occasionally, until the pork is cooked through and has a caramelized crust.
  • Remove the skewers from the grill and let them rest for a few minutes. Serve the Pork Souvlaki on a platter with warm pita bread, tzatziki sauce, and your choice of sliced tomatoes, onions, and fresh herbs.

Video

Keyword dried oregano, fresh lemon juice, Pork Souvlaki, Red Wine Vinegar

Tips & Tricks for the Perfect Pork Souvlaki Recipe

 Expert Tips for Preparing the Perfect Pork Souvlaki.

Choose the Right Cut of Pork

For the most flavorful and tender Pork Souvlaki, it’s essential to select the right cut of pork. Pork shoulder or pork tenderloin are commonly used and recommended. Pork shoulder, also known as pork butt, offers more marbling, which adds moisture and flavour to the meat. However, if you prefer a leaner option, pork tenderloin works well too.

Cut the Pork into Uniform Cubes

When cutting the pork into cubes, ensure they are of similar size. This allows for even cooking, ensuring that each piece cooks at the same rate. Aim for bite-sized cubes, around 1 to 1.5 inches in size.

Marinate Overnight for Optimal Flavor

While marinating the pork for at least 2 hours is sufficient, for the best flavour and tenderness, marinate it overnight in the refrigerator. This extended marination time allows the flavours to fully penetrate the meat, resulting in a more flavorful and succulent result.

Don’t Over-marinate

While marinating is essential for flavour, avoid marinating the pork for too long. Over-marinating can break down the proteins excessively and result in a mushy texture. Overnight marination or a maximum of 24 hours is generally sufficient.

Use Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice

Freshly squeezed lemon juice adds a vibrant tanginess to the marinade. It’s best to use freshly squeezed lemon juice rather than bottled juice for the brightest and freshest flavour.

Keep the Marinade-to-Pork Ratio Balanced

When preparing the marinade, ensure the amount is enough to thoroughly coat the pork cubes without drowning them. Aim for a balanced ratio to achieve optimal flavour without overpowering the meat.

Use High-quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil

The quality of olive oil used in the marinade plays a significant role in enhancing the flavour of Pork Souvlaki. Opt for high-quality extra virgin olive oil for its robust flavour and fruity notes.

Skewer Preparation and Grilling

Soak wooden skewers in water for approximately 30 minutes before threading the pork cubes onto them. This prevents the skewers from burning during grilling. Metal skewers don’t require soaking. Preheat the grill to medium-high heat (around 400°F or 200°C) before placing the skewers on it. 

Preheating ensures proper cooking and helps achieve a desirable charred exterior. While grilling, turn the skewers occasionally to ensure even cooking and to prevent any burning or charring. Be mindful of the cooking time to avoid overcooking and drying out the pork.

Allow the Pork to Rest

Once the Pork Souvlaki is cooked, remove the skewers from the grill and let them rest for a few minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute within the meat, resulting in a more tender and juicy final product.

Customize with Additional Ingredients

While the classic Pork Souvlaki recipe is delicious on its own, feel free to experiment and customize. Consider adding colourful bell peppers, onions, or cherry tomatoes to the skewers for added flavour and visual appeal. These additions can enhance the overall taste and provide a delightful variation.

Serve with Traditional Accompaniments

Traditional accompaniments for Pork Souvlaki include warm pita bread, tzatziki sauce, sliced tomatoes, and onions. These elements complement the flavours of the souvlaki and add a refreshing and textural contrast. Consider serving it alongside a Greek salad or roasted potatoes for a complete Mediterranean feast.

Don’t Forget the Char

Achieving a slight char on the exterior of the Pork Souvlaki adds depth of flavour and an appetizing appearance. Aim for a caramelized crust while ensuring the interior remains juicy and tender.

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