Talk:Kebab/Archive 1

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Can any European explain the difference between gyros, kebab and shwarma? This American is still laughing trying to imagine you eating al those little sticks on your pizza! Rmhermen 14:30, Dec 6, 2003 (: Natually, one takes the meat off the stick before putting it on the pizza. Don't they have kababs in America? (heck, I know they do - I can recommend a most excellent Afghan place in Sunnyvale, California) -- Finlay McWalter 15:55, 6 Dec 2003 (UTC)

SO you are saying that European kebabs are chunks of meat on sticks but the author neglected to mention that in the article? Gyros and schwarma are just sliced meats which was the impression I got that the kebab article was saying. There is no way kebab pizza makes any sense in the US because if it doesn't involve a stick it isn't a kebab. That is the kebab isn't the meat itself, it is the entire presentation. Rmhermen 16:04, Dec 6, 2003 (UTC)

Doner Kebab is served with salad in pitta bread and optional sauces. Shawarma is kebab meat rolled into one sandwich roll with salad and sauce.

This picture confirms my suspicion [1]. An American would have no trouble identifying that as gyros. I should note that kebab is always short for shish kebab. This page [2] shows both shish kebab and gyros slices/shwarma. Rmhermen 16:14, Dec 6, 2003 (UTC)
Nope - kebab can mean any type of kebab - normally doner, but can be shish or all the other varieties Secretlondon 16:17, Dec 6, 2003 (UTC)
(I'm not putting this into the article, as I'm not really super-sure). Doner kebab is slices of meat served in a pita bread. Shish kebab is chunks of meat (and sometimes veggies too) barbequed on a stick. Like much of turkish cuisine, there's a direct equivalent in Greek (and often Lebanese and Egyptian too) cuisine, hence the confusion between gyros and donner kebabs. I imagine the "kebab pizza" is some enterprising late-night-cafe owner's oppertune scheme (curry pizzas are also common in such establishments, as are deep-fried mars-bars and other such dietary horrors) and shouldn't be taken as "genuine turkish". I have no idea what a samak is, however (sounds vaguely vulcan...) -- Finlay McWalter 16:26, 6 Dec 2003 (UTC)
Samak appears to be fish shish kebab which just sounds unnatural. According to the link in the article shwarma doesn't even mean the same thing. The schwarma I have had in America is a pressed loaf differing from gyros only in spices and vegetables. The link claims European schwarma is "not pressed" and falls to pieces when cut. Not the same. Rmhermen 16:34, Dec 6, 2003 (UTC)
I should mention that in a fancy sit-down restaurant, they'll give you a shish kebab with the stick still present. In a grotty takeaway place, however, they'll deskewer it for you and put it into a pita (so they don't have drunken people skewering one another with pointy metal or bamboo things). -- Finlay McWalter 16:32, 6 Dec 2003 (UTC)
Worth adding perhaps, but I'm not quite sure about the spelling of this. There is another variety of kebab pretty common around here (The Netherlands) called dürüm kebab. It's regular döner kebab meat with the usual vegetables but instead of a pita bread, they wrap a single piece of (I assume) unrisen and partly baked turkish bread around it. It holds more meat then a normal döner kebab and it's particulary in with turkish people here in The Netherlands. Most places around here dont list it on their menus, it's generally considered a "by turks, for turks" recipe, but they'll gladly serve it to you if you ask for it, even if it isn't on any menu. Not exactly a encyclopedia-worthy bit of text, but a nice little tidbit to know, I guess... :: DarkLordSeth 16:12, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I don't have any idea what each is, except that shish kebabs are bits of meat and vegetables on sticks and that what I know as 'yiros' (I suppose an alt. spelling of gyros) are bits of meat, tomato, vegetables, and tzatziki in pita bread and that they are delicious.

We're currently calling it a "Döner" not a "Doner". I'm guessing that umlaut over the O is an artifact of this article's odd swedish provenance (rather than an effort to reflect its proper turkish spelling). Unless anyone objects, I intend to replace the o-umlaut with a regular o. -- Finlay McWalter 17:51, 6 Dec 2003 (UTC)

Döner is also the German spelling but it doesn't appear to be an English language spelling. Rmhermen 22:14, Dec 6, 2003 (UTC)

Just a note regarding the above. O with an umlaut is a letter of the turkish alphabet, and the correct spelling is Döner, NOT Doner. The pronounciation of the "ö" character in Turkish is the same as in German and as such "Döner" is not pronounced anything remotely close to the "Donna" you hear drunken lager louts ask for in England's kebab houses! I suppose the closest I could indicate in writing would be D+"earn"+"air". I'm sure you all have better things to worry about than how this heart attack on a plate is supposed to be written and pronounced, but I thought to correct your error!

(A friendly passer-by.)

Döner Kebab, which is said to have been invented in Berlin by Turkish immigrants, -- said by who? I've had Döner in Turkey itself, and the Turks themselves trace it back to a chef in Bursa. [3] Jpatokal 00:47, 13 Apr 2004 (UTC)

I believe a gyro has tzaziki in it and a shawarma has hummous in it. Where does a Shish Taouk and a kofte fit into all of this? -AnyonymousCoward

Shish tawook (taouk) is yogurt-marinated chicken on a stick. Kofte appears to be generic for parsley/mint flavored meatballs which are sometimes cooked as "shish kofte". Rmhermen 14:43, Jul 25, 2004 (UTC)

What's the real difference between a Kebab and a Souvlaki?

In Australia we have both Kebab's and the Souvlaki. From my research it is looking like there is no difference what so ever. If anyone can tell me if it is a change in the sauce or ingredients that is in it then it would be a big help. In Australia both are meat basically wrapped in bread with the usual tomato, garlic sauce etc.

  • As far as i know, souvlaki is a kind of shish kebab made of pork, which has a Greek origin. There is no other difference i've heard.


Why did you revert

Kebab is also traditional in Greece, where is it known as "gyros" ("rotate", because of the way the meat is grilled). In France, kebabs are also known as sandwitchs grecs ("Greek sandwitchs")."

I'd think that the perception of wether kebab are seen as imported from Turkey or Greece is something interesting (certainly not a major issue, but yet funny); also, I see the word "gyros" was discussed already, but "sandwitchs grecs" was not. What is so wrong about the above statement ? Rama 11:23, 31 Jan 2005 (UTC)

sandwitchs grecs is French for gyros, not for kebab and is mentioned on the gyros page already. Rmhermen 04:47, Feb 3, 2005 (UTC)

Origin of kebab

the word 'kebab' probably comes from the Akkadian language, an extinct East-Semitic language from ancient Mesopotamia (approx. contemporary Iraq & Syria)

According to and "The earliest surviving kebab recipe is from one of the few available medieval Baghdadi cookbooks, the tenth-century Kitab al-Tabeekh (book of cookery) by Ibn Sayyar al-Warraq of Baghdad, dealing mainly with urban ninth-century cooking."

ZZyXx 17:58, 2005 Feb 3 (UTC)

Change picture?

Well, at first glance this might seem too much as an average hamburger tough kebabs are served that way, but shouldn't the official Wikipedia kebab article have at least the most usual and widespread picture of what you first think of when someone says "kebab": the vertical rotating meat on a stick?

Well, perhaps because the first thing a North American thinks of when you mean "a rotating meat on a stick" is gyros, secondly shwarma

. I think that picture is in the Doner kebab article, though. Now if you could add a picture of a skewer of meat and/or veg (shish kebab) to this article that would be a major improvement. Rmhermen 14:40, August 3, 2005 (UTC)


While I know its nitpicky, and I'm not going to change it, I think the spelling "kebab" is probably the least used in the places I've lived. Heck, most persian restaurants use kabab or kabob. I should know, I pay attention to these things. I'll give you one guess why: Bobak 03:23, 9 February 2006 (UTC)

Google shows 2.7 million for "Kebab" vs. 0.9 million for "Kabob" and 0.39 million for "Kabab". I don't think our spelling is an unusual one in English. Rmhermen 05:01, 9 February 2006 (UTC)

Döner and Shawarma

It is stated that these are similar. Aren't they identical? Bertilvidet 16:28, 15 February 2006 (UTC)

Sometimes, sometimes not - is probably the most accurate answer. See discussion on Döner kebab, Shawarma and gyros Rmhermen 18:54, 15 February 2006 (UTC)


Introduction of this article mentions names of this food in Iran and Pakistan... could we obtain somewhere those names in arabic script? It'd be really nice. --Dijxtra 11:09, 18 March 2006 (UTC)

I added the Russian and Ukrainian spellings. As the person above me said, we would like it in arabic and any other language we can get. Tholex 01:12, 17 September 2006 (UTC)

History of the kebab in the west

The souvlaki was probably introduced to the US and Germany through Greek immigrants. The kebab was introduced to the UK, via London, through the Greek Cypriot community (I know that for a fact) who popularised it in the 1970s. Perhaps there are other stories. It would be great to have a fuller picture. Politis