Eat at UAE’s top places on international Shawarma Day, or better yet, make it at home!

Eat at UAE’s top places on international Shawarma Day, or better yet, make it at home!

The famed dish is much loved in the Middle East and beyond. Here’s why…

Shawarma Image Credit: Shutterstock

If you’ve ever watched the post-credits scene of Marvel’s The Avengers, you would know that even the world’s greatest superheroes need to relax with a shawarma.

This tasty dish is claimed to have first emerged from the Ottoman Empire in the 18th century. Shawarma comes from the Turkish word ‘çevirme’, which means ‘turning’. It is made with juicy, shredded pieces of rotisserie meat, which is placed on a skewer and grilled till it is ready to be scraped and spread out on a soft flatbread called lavash or saj.

The meat is then topped off with pickles or pickled vegetables and sauces like garlic sauce or toum and the famed tahina. Most restaurants also accompany this mouth-watering wrap with a side of fries, a salad or even falafel.

Today, shawarma is a staple dish in the Middle East and beyond. You would find a shawarma stall all over the world. However, it may be unmatched to what is served in the UAE and we can account for that!

That being said, are you hungry for shawarma already?

Food by Gulf News ran an Insta poll on the account of it being Shawarma Day, and we did get more than a few responses on where you need to try this dish in the UAE:

1. Laffah – Sharjah and Dubai

2. Operation Falafel - Dubai

3. Aroos Damascus – Sharjah and Dubai

4. Allo Beirut - Dubai

5. Bilad Al Shams - Dubai

But here’s what we suggest, you don’t need a reason to eat shawarma. You can eat it at any time… or even better, make it home with a quick recipe from Chef Muhammet Ors of Turkish restaurant Babaji:

Chicken shawarma wrap

Shawarma ... picture used for illustrative purpose only


1 boneless whole chicken

1 white onion, juiced

2 cloves garlic, mashed

2 tbsp yogurt

2 tbsp olive oil

5 gms sweet paprika powder

4 gms oregano

1 tsp black pepper powder

1 tsp chilli flakes

5 gms table salt

For the wrap

1 tortilla bread or lavash

200 gms cooked chicken

60 gms Romanian lettuce

50 gms sliced tomato

30 gms cucumber pickle

40 gms sliced onion

10 gms ketchup

10 gms mayonnaise


Mix all together and let it marinate for a minimum of 1 hour.

Arrange it in stacks on a rotating kebab skewer and let it cook. Make sure to keep turning.

Once ready, slice off the meat and spread it out on the bread.

Top it with sauces and vegetables.

Roll the bread into a wrap and toast it a little.

Serve and enjoy!

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