Finally getting around to posting this, my Greek dinner. Soup was avgolemeno, three dishes were stifado, a beef and onion stew. Lamb gyro with tzatziki, and spanakorizo, spinach and rice.
The soup I did a couple months ago in the citrus challenge. I am not going to repeat that post here. I will talk about it later, though. For the stifado, beef and shallots.
I used a nice hunk of beef chuck.
For the the lamd gyro, a nice hunk of lamb shoulder.
For the spanakorizo, spinach and rice are the main players, along with some herbs, mint and dill.
And the tzatziki, yogurt, cucumber, and mint.
First off I made the chicken stock for the soup, poaching a whole chicken. You can see the whole process here: Avgolememo
Next was making the tzatziki sauce. Dumped the yogurt into a bowl. Grated the English cucumber into another bowl. Salted it, let sit for about half an hour. Drained out the excess water, added to the yogurt. Chopped up the mint leaves, added them, along with a small squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Mixed it all up, stashed in the fridge until needed. Got the lamb marinating in olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, oregano. Got some cucumber and red onion pickling in red wine vinegar with dill.
Next, worked on the beef and shallot stew.
Diced up the chuck, peeled the shallots. Browned the beef, browned the shallots in the same pot. Deglazed with half a cup of red wine. It was wine from Slovenia, which is closer the Greece than California. Added some rosemary and thyme, some beef stock, a healthy splash of red wine vinegar and let it simmer until the beef was tender.
Stew is done, next dish.
The spinach is stemmed and chopped. Olive oil, the good Greek stuff, is put in the pot over medium heat. Rice is added, stirred until starting to turn translucent. Add in the herbs, a little garlic and the spinach. Give it all a stir, then some of the chicken broth I made for the soup. Covered and simmered until the rice was done.
Time to grill the lamb. I was thinking I would do chunks on skewers, but decided to grill it whole, like a steak, and use thin slices.
Worked out pretty well.
Started off with some soup. This batch wasn't quite as good as the last batch. I took a shortcut, whisking the whole eggs instead of separating them and whisking the whites to stiff peaks. Didn't change the flavor, but certainly didn't provide quite the thickening as the stiff peaks batch.
On to the gyro.
It was GOOD! Thin strips of rare lamb laid over a tzatziki slathered pita, with tomato, pickled onions and feta. If I had gone through the trouble of making my own pitas, it would have been perfect! Served with some spanikorizo on the side.
And the stifado also garnished with the onions and feta, very good.
I think I ate too much that day. My big, fat Greek dinner was a success!