The history of the döner
The döner is by far the best-known Turkish dish worldwide. The name "döner" actually comes from döner kebap or döner kebab. "Kebab" is synonymous with roasted meat, and "döner" is derived from the Turkish verb "dönmek", meaning "to rotate". "Döner kebab" thus means "rotating skewer".
Many variants of the döner, accorded different names, are available the world over. For instance, in Arab-speaking regions, the name "shawarma" or "shoarma" is used.
The döner kebab certainly originated in Anatolia. However, the döner's victory march around the world begins here in Germany.
The idea of selling the döner with salad and sauce in a slitted flatbread (pita), thereby rendering it a fast food competing with the burger and the curried sausage, originated in Germany in the early 1970s.
The "döner pouch" has now marched to victory right across Germany and Europe and ousted the hamburger and the curried sausage from the fast food throne. Today, the döner is Germany's most popular fast food and, without doubt, one of the healthiest