Halifax Donair Cooked On Vertical Beer Keg BBQ || Glen & Friends Cooking

Halifax Donair Cooked On Vertical Beer Keg BBQ || Glen & Friends Cooking

welcome friends welcome back to the
kitchen if you have been following along you might have seen some of the videos
where Julie and I went to Mexico City and we did a street food tour and after
eating a whole lot of Pastore it occurred to me that I’ve got a beer keg
and I could turn that beer keg into a charcoal burning vertical rotisserie to
make al pesto so I’ll link to those videos below came home turned a beer keg
into a vertical rotisserie and I’ll link to that video down below but before I
get into making tacos up a store and schwarmann and some of the more involved
recipes I thought I would do something homegrown Canadian this is pure
Canadiana immigrant experience food and I mean that in the greatest way I’m
gonna make a Halifax Donaire so before I get into the history of the Donaire and
what it’s all about let’s just start by making it so I have here ground beef and
this is sort of if you live in Ontario it’s called medium ground beef if you
live in the United States it’s probably 80/20 you want a good mix of beef too
fat or a good beef to fat ratio and I put that into the stand mixer yes I’m
using a stand mixer wait for it this is how it works
into here I’m gonna put black pepper this is really simple paprika salt
cayenne raiga no garlic powder and onion powder now we want to emulsify this
almost like a sausage well no completely like an emulsified sausage and there’s a
few ways that you could do it you could mix all the spices in with the ground
beef and then just keep putting it through a grinder into a little mussaf
eyes that would work fantastic that’s probably my preferred method to do this
certainly that’s the way that the the factory in Halifax that makes this stuff
commercially for a bunch of restaurants does it but I’m going to use the stand
mixer with a dough hook this might take a little bit longer but
I think for ease of cleanup this is the best method for me now if you don’t have
a stand mixer or you don’t have a scam it’s a big enough you could use a food
processor definitely and just whiz it in the food processor for a little while
until you get that nice emulsification I switched to the paddle from the dough
hook I initially didn’t want to use the paddle because I watched Matty Matheson
make this a couple weeks ago and he made a mess of his kitchen but I guess his
mixer wasn’t as big as mine so this is working out fairly well so let’s talk
about Halifax Donaire what is Halifax Donaire where did it come from where did
it start who invented it and just like every food story or recipe the history
is a little bit muddled there are competing families who claim that they
invented it and that they started it and they were the first but generally if you
distill it down the stories are basically the same you’ve got a family
that moved to Canada from Greece in the 1960s they open a restaurant in halifax
they’re surveying euros it doesn’t go over very well with the locals they
don’t like the spicing they don’t like the lamb for whatever reason it doesn’t
sell so the chef goes back into the kitchen
and says what do these people want to eat and he comes up with a mix that is
100% ground beef instead of lamb takes out a lot of the Mediterranean spicing
and adds in things that people in Halifax were more familiar with at that
time cooks it in exactly the same way takes out the tzatziki sauce that
garlicky sort of yogurt sauce that I personally loved and instead they make
this other sauce that I’ll make later that is just sickly sweet and vinegary
goes over really well people love it absolutely love it and it’s a hit and it
doesn’t really travel much outside of Nova Scotia out of Halifax in Nova
Scotia until probably the 1990s but if you really want the proper Halifax done
area you have to go to Halifax okay almost ready so for those of you
following along at home yes it is related to donor or donor or Euros or
gyros but it is its flavored differently it is uniquely Canadian and I really
like it although you have to be drunk at like 2:00 in the morning to have one I
think it’s kind of like puttin it really is an after the bar or after the club
type meal so now what I need to do is form the meat around the rotisserie so
that we can cook it outside with the charcoal and for those of you following
along at home yes it’s just barbecued meat loaf and so Mady wasn’t too far off
when he did his in the oven I’ve seen people do it in the oven like a regular
meatloaf I’ve also seen people take this meat and lay it flat out on a cookie
sheet and form it into a very thin thin thin layer and then bake it and that
gives you a texture that is much closer to what you would get by cooking it on a
vertical spit and the flavors a lot more roasty than cooking it in a loaf tin
like you would a meatloaf so I just want to form this on this is the first time
I’m doing this at home like this so I just I don’t know that I’m gonna get the
shape completely right but I’m gonna do my best which is really all you can do
okay the shape is not great but the meat is starting to warm up a little bit so
it’s not holding its shape quite as nicely I’m gonna stick this in the
fridge and let it chill down I’ll rework the shape a little bit after its chilled
a little bit more and then I want to leave it in the fridge for probably
three to four hours collect the whole thing come together and let all of the
flavors mix nicely in that time we’ll make the sauce and we will get the
barbecue going okay it’s time to make the sauce and I’m gonna tell you don’t
think about the sauce too much just enjoy it without thinking about the fact
that it’s evaporated milk sugar and vinegar it just tastes
it tastes great on the donor so evaporated milk now some recipes don’t
do evaporated milk and sugar they do condensed milk without the sugar because
there’s already sugar in condensed milk and you can do that way for sure
definitely so that’s the sugar that goes in this is garlic powder and then we
need some white vinegar just plain white vinegar and then we just pour this in
and whisk at the same time and as soon as you start pouring it in and whisking
it thickens right up so just finish up and then I’m gonna stick this in the
fridge and let it come together it’ll thicken up and I’m gonna put it in a
squeeze bottle for service I guess it’s time to go ahead and start the barbecue
okay the fire’s rolling I just loaded it up with some extra charcoal so that as
soon as I put the rotisserie on I don’t have to sort of reach in and add more
charcoal so I think it’s time to get the meat and get going okay can I get this
in there first time there we go whoo we are on okay so we’re cooking pretty well right
now I’m gonna close these doors just a little bit to try to shape the heat
around the Donaire as it cooks okay it’s time to take off the first few slices
let’s see if I can do this hey that smells pretty good but I’m a
little worried I dip dip it dip it and throw it on yep really quick you know
closer okay I feel like I’m gonna dribble everywhere so they steam the
pedia first first time it’s like the first pancake sacrificial okay so here’s
the sauce the cooker works kind of the way I thought it might temperature-wise
I think it was a little bit difficult I think my biggest problem was I didn’t
make the I didn’t make the loaf correctly I don’t think I emulsified the
meat enough and because I didn’t emulsify the meat enough I didn’t get a
good shape and because I didn’t get a good shape it cooked unevenly and was
difficult to cut so all of these things are things that version 1 version 1 I
know next time I can do it better sauce onions and tomatoes may go Jules thank
you okay sauce meat yeah I could have done better with me yeah well but it
kind of looks like it’s supposed to look like if I could cut it thinner I think I
would be in a better shape oh that game that’s a skill thing right yep Oh onion
it’s boy this is not first date food at all no I’m already making a mess okay
and are you ready yep roll it up no way you go mmm okay it is not pretty
it has all the right flavors though hmm it is I don’t think I don’t think I did
a very good job with the bread but I think the Peter I got is too thick
mm-hmm mm-hmm there is a much thinner style of pita
that they use for next time but it’s got that sweet onion II yeah a
little bit of garlic a little bit of spice barbecue e mmm I’m in I mean
project one on our on our homemade mm-hm device is pretty good I can actually
just pick up the pieces that fall out so it needs some refining yes but you know
imagine coming out of a bar in Halifax in 1975 and seeing stop and Tom Connors
chomping down on one of these after his show that would have been that would
have been great I’m sure well um I guess we’re gonna continue experimenting
clearly because we haven’t stopped eating mm-hmm it tastes great okay so I
just need to cook it better good makoki a better starts with with make sure
shape which goes back to I’m also finding it properly and so there you go
and um but the keg works great just fabulous a couple of edges opens up also
a couple of little changes I’ll make to it I will drill holes in the bottom so
the fat drips into the bottom it has some way to go would notice we didn’t we
didn’t catch fire but there’s a couple times I looked inside and thought oh no
there’s a little bit of grease in the bottom could be in trouble it was fine
though everybody was worried about the rotisserie motor being too hot I took
temperature readings all through the cook it never reached even half of what
it’s rated for in terms of temperature because you didn’t purposely buy one
that was that was there was for high temperatures so it is it’s completely
fine where it is so don’t worry about it I’m and the other thing was the charcoal
worked great I was worried that I’d constantly be putting charcoal in I
fired it up put in fresh charcoal just before I put the the meat on mm-hmm and
then once in the middle I put in a little bit more charcoal because I was
worried but I shouldn’t have yeah cuz it’s still really hot it’s still really
hot and I noticed that after I put the next little bit of charcoal and that it
got too hot and that’s when I ran into trouble with it
that little char on there you know what the irony though is that because of the
sugars in what you put into the day yep it’s actually it’s that sweet sour
versus blender so that makes sense like that sugary so all in all I think
today’s a win well I’ll take it as a way it’s a win so we’re gonna keep going on
this we’re gonna try all of the meats but you know it is the end of October
and it is kind of chilly outside today and we always start these things I know
I have this vague memory of assembling the Pizza Pizza Oven last fall in the
dark and then some fall evening so come on back to see the next one thanks for
stopping by you see you again soon you

94 thoughts on “Halifax Donair Cooked On Vertical Beer Keg BBQ || Glen & Friends Cooking”

  1. Thanks for watching everyone! Please go easy on me in the comments… This was the first time making this at home.
    For those non-Canadians wondering who Stompin' Tom Connors is: https://youtu.be/L4GEsv6ENd0
    Ps. Here's the links to the BEER KEG BBQ: youtube.com/watch?v=XzF3WrpkCWg & THE MEXICO CITY STREET FOOD TOUR: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLgOb3zseg1hR49DUXgKlvuPRgpzkRMURY

  2. Good afternoon can I give you a massive tip when you put the meat on the skewer wrapping in cling film very very very tightly and then fridge it for least 4 hours or more

  3. I only wish this video came out before I visited Halifax. Honesty, it just gives me one more reason to go back to that really great city.

  4. I'm from Halifax and eat donair sauce regularly, I would say the consistency of the sauce is too thin, maybe some corn starch or an unflavored thickener would help

  5. Newfoundlander here. The domain sauce is interesting. A lot of people here eat it as a dip with pizza and garlic fingers, but I don't think the Halifax style donair has completely travelled over though.

  6. Wasn’t the meat upside down? I thought it was supposed to be fat at the top and thin at the bottom, to keep the meat from drying out?

  7. Sir, I burn toast. Your culinary skills are in no danger of being critiqued by me. Looks amazing and I am enjoying your engineering expertise.

  8. Here they always serve it wrapped in aluminum foil. It gives you the illusion that the sauce will be retained as you eat it walking down the street. Of course, the sauce will not be contained and will drip on your jacket and shoes. Always take extra napkins for: your hands, your face, (2 more for your beard if you're so equipped), your jacket, your shoes… etc
    BTW, I think food service regs now require restaurants to put the slices of donair meat onto a flat top for a bit to make sure it gets hot enough, since it's possible that they could slice a bit too deep when too many have ordered too quickly so they might not have cooked it hot enough for long enough on the spit.

  9. Not bad, from Halifax. A lot of the restaurants here use an electric grinder type thing to slice the meat. Thin Lebanese pitas are used, but so what? A Greek pita or even a Na'an would be awesome. Probably better than the thinner version.

  10. As the charcoal pans are completely self contained, what if in you were to add a back door so you can easily add charcoal to the tiers. Though this may not be fully necessary maybe something to consider if you ever plan on doing long cooking sessions. Love the content, cheers!

  11. Really interesting how diverse a very similar food can be from country to country, i tried that halifax donair actually in halifax while i visited my aunt, who lives close to halifax. The meat is a bit different, the sauce is completely different, it is really sweet. In europe more accurate in germany the sauce is like you mentioned tzaziki or garlic flavoured. Nice video 🙂 .

    Greetings from germany

  12. It was either Donair or the Chinese food place on Spring Garden after a night at the Office. They both did a brisk business.

  13. Did you add a door at the back to load the charcoal or are you having to remove the meat or reach past it with fresh charcoal ?

  14. It's easier to eat at a take out place because it's wrapped in the takeout foil. You leave the foil on it when you eat it.

  15. Hey Glen, here a maybe useful tip from the homeland of the mighty Döner…. If we eat it with a pita here, the pita is sliced open forming a pocket and then filled. That prevents the content falling out. Then, if you use thinner bread, it is called a Durum. Here you stuff it, roll the thing and then fold the bottom of the bread so things do not fall out there. You hold the Durum vertical and eat it from the top down while the bottom gets soggy… so hurry up 🙂

  16. Matty Matheson recently did a Donair recipe video too, only his was in the oven instead of on a spit. He also made the classic "cum sauce" for it too. 😉 You should check him out Glen (if you haven't already), he's hilarious and an absolute culinary madman!

  17. here's a tip Glen, add water to the mixing of the meat, maybe a tablespoon or two. I learned that from my many years as a sausage maker.

  18. The vertical spit is cool. but when cooking at home without one I like to form Gyro around skewers and grill over coals. This Kabob like treatment gives a good ratio of milliard reaction to juicy interior.

  19. You can buy "fancy lebanese pitas" they are a bit closer to what you want. Also, when you cut off the meat you can toss that on the frying pan while steaming the pita. Lastly, lots more sauce on after meat and toppings (dice the hell out of them too). That would be my advice for recreating that "oh damn I'll regret this tomorrow" Halifax donair. Coming from a Haligonian who has one about once a month. Alexandra's pizza is my favorite place to get em if you ever find yourself in town.

  20. It’s interesting how your kebab developed, over here in uk it’s just lamb minced with plenty of chilli and garlic sauce and a bit of salad in a pita. But the traditional gyro’s in Greece trumps all. Chunks of lamb with tzatziki ish sauce and bit of cucumber and tomatoes. Like you said it’s definitely food to soak up the booze

  21. I think it’s great considering it was a first run at this!!!! As a former butcher I think the only way to get the emulsification you’re looking for on the meat would come from a bowl chopper(expensive and bulky for the home kitchen). Also, maybe an electric knife for slicing? I know sac religious coming from a butcher! Great work though!

  22. In December of '87, I was injured while co-piloting an aircraft which encountered a 'somewhat less than adequate landing' in Greenland. While enroute to the States for more adequate care, I 'began heading south, at a faster rate than the plane was capable of flying', and wound up at the hospital in Gander, (Paton Memorial) where I received "two units of Canada's finest Type A-Positive".

    A little over a year later, I flew back to Gander – to thank those who helped stabilize my condition that day, and wound up at a pub which served "Halifax Donair", (Canadian Gyro, more 'kick' than the Hellenic version). "Festive formalities" kicked on, and before I was even allowed to sit at the bar, some smart a** b*****d reached into a freezer near their grill, and pulled a frozen bird out of a Ziploc bag, made me kiss its 'posterior aperture', then forced me to chase it down with something distilled from pine cones and Janitor in a Drum.

    I had been "screeched – in"; however, I now wonder about that, because the videos displayed while searching for spelling variants clearly state that a frozen cod is used, and I was prodded to defile a puffin.

  23. Yum!! I prefer the side made with condensed milk, and yes… Extra sugar. And also drizzle the sauce all over the rolled donair heavily when you're finished wrapping it… Way better that way 😍

  24. Love it. We do the recipe from Chef Steps and we all use wild game. I still whip the snot out of it. I usually just bake it in a loaf pan and then we let it cool so it’s warm and we can slice nice thin pieces. I may have to try on the BBQ now

  25. I've found adding some crushed ice to my Gyro meat helps to get that emulsification you're looking for.I also don't form the meat around the skewer; I create a 'sausage' and wrap it in plastic wrap and nearly freeze it and then shove it down on the skewer then unwrap it. That gives a more even shape for those of us that aren't professionals.

  26. Nice attempt on the meat, and probably a tasty food, but that is some real runny donair sauce, there, Glen. It should be a goo more than a liquid. (Think cream-based dip or store-bought caesar dressing.) I think you stirred too much when adding the vinegar. More stirring makes it thinner (unless you use condensed milk). Try searching for "Glen Petitpas donair" for fail-proof instructions based on real restaurants' donairs and insider info.
    Also if you're trying to represent a "real" donair (which YouTube doesn't recognize as a word, apparently), you've got to put more meat on those. Like, at least twice as much. A real donair from the East Coast is a wrapped cylinder probably at least an inch and a half across. If you don't think there's too much meat on it, there isn't enough meat on it. You should be worried about the future state of your digestion when you eat one of those.
    Layer of chopped onion and tomato, bunch of sauce, MOUND of meat, more sauce, wrap in foil, get drunk, then eat outside so you don't have to clean EVERYTHING. Bring all your napkins. And some wet wipes.
    You're definitely right about the thin pita. That thick pita would be more appropriate for a sit-down fork-and-knife open-face donair like as from Pizza Delight, which I barely consider a donair.

    Overall, good first attempt, though. Glad to see this delicious late-night mistake getting some love elsewhere.

    -Advice from PEI (3 hours from Halifax, been there many many times, and we have Halifax donair chains here which order their supplies from Halifax.)

    Oh, and if you want to introduce the Middle and the West to another East Coast pizza-place classic, try making garlic fingers in your pizza oven. They are traditionally served with donair sauce for dipping, and are delicious.

  27. I add phosphate and meat glue when I make my doner kebab. I cook it as a big "loaf" in a sous vide bag, refrigerate, and slice thinly, before reheating. It comes out perfectly!

  28. Very impressed you tried steaming the pita, if you used the thin ones you would have had a much better time. Also, dice the onions small, and the tomatoes smaller, better chance of even dispersal of them in every bite. Some of the best donair sauce has just the slightest hint of garlic, I tried mincing a single clove of fresh garlic and putting that in and it was very nice.
    Great job though!

  29. I've been thinking about doing a plant based version of an Al pastor or even a Shawarma! I feel like I have to now after seeing this!

  30. You have to roll the sandwich in deli paper into a cylnder and then slice in half. It will stay together and be more manable and compact to eat. Works for any sandwich on a roll or pita.

  31. Good first attempt! Less wisking of the sauce will give you the proper texture, and 2wice cooked meat.. reheat meat in pan before serving gives the crispy edges… DICED onions and tomatos….. 🙂

  32. I think it turned out great for a first try! For your second experiment with the beer keg BBQ, it would be great if you tried making Doner the original way: www.youtube.com/watch?v=HF0aOC_w_bU

  33. Looks like something I would enjoy… Now let us have a moment of silence for the beer keg that sacrificed its life for this project… 🙂

  34. I want a set up like this for the side of my fireplace. A stand with a rod a gear, and a pan at the bottom would be so much fun.

  35. Glenn!! You definitely need to try out the Halifax Original Donair!! They’ve got a location in Milton and Burlington! Honestly best Donairs I’ve ever had! And I spent 8 years in Halifax. Definitely check them out!

  36. As far as I can tell this is a rip off of a german/turkish dish called "Döner". Not only is the name a complete bastardazation of the Döner, the sauce is also. What the hell happened to the yoghurt sauce? Where is the mint? Or at least parsely? Let alone the garlic… I'm shocked 😂

  37. Has anyone suggested rolling the meat in cling wrap like you're doing a herb butter for steaks? A consistent shape will aid in cooking, I'm thinking. Then you can impale it on the spike when you're ready, unwrap it and stick in in the BBQ?

  38. I've been making different kinds of kebabs for years, the German Turkish kebab is by far the best. It used to just have lamb in the good takeouts. The bread is the real secret. It's basically a thick pizza base cut into 4 and cut to the crust from the peak. that is griddled on both sides until crisp . It has a stability that you can hold a doner kebab with one hand without the mess.

    I also make a sauce out of a crushed garlic clove a pinch of salt and natural yogurt with mortar and pestle with some fresh finely Chopped mint.

  39. Thank you for the history lesson on the origin of Donair. I have loved gyros for decades but only learned about Donair from the Donair Cam that was on YouTube for a brief spell. I really love your DIY approach to cooking this dish and you have inspired me to cobble something up in the very near future. 👍 Edit: Despite the 1st time challenges, this looks delicious and only needs minor refinements. Would partial freezing and using a meat grinder help with the emulsification?

  40. I feel like if you put the meat into a cylinder/cone shaped container, or plastic wrapped tube and chilling it before putting it on a spit to cook could help too.

  41. As the descendant of Italian immigrants, I really enjoyed the history of the food. Thanks for sharing, Glen! ❤

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