World Food Challenge

Day 68: Greece and Greek meatball with potatoes and Horta Vrasta

Καλησπέρα, Raffles!

Today we are going to one of the countries of my dreams. I have always wanted to go to Greece, but no matter how close, I haven’t managed to cross the sea to this wonderful country. Ever since I was a child, I dreamt about Ancient Greece. I used to read lots about the Greek mythology and history. I even studied Greek and am still working my way through it.
For this dish, I decided to make a very simple meal (I even discussed it with a Greek friend of mine): Μπιφτέκια με πατάτες και χόρτα βράστα (meatballs with potatoes and green vegetables).

Most of you will probably know moussaka and zaziki, therefore I wanted to come up with something different.

The vegetables, horta vrasta, are a dish that you will find in almost every single Greek household as a staple. For the greens, you’ll need:

1 kg of leafy greens like endive or chards
white vinegar
olive oil
freshly squeezed lemon juice

Start by washing and cleaning your greens. Chop them roughly and boil them in hot water with some vinegar.
Squeeze them and let them cool a bit. Make the sauce by mixing lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper (I added some oregano too). Mix the greens with the sauce and accompany with meat or anything. You can serve them warm or at room temperature.

For the meatballs you’ll need:

300 g minced meat (I used lamb)
1 egg
1 grated onion
1 grated tomato (small)
1 tbsp oregano
olive oil

Mix all the ingredients together and shape small balls with the dough. Either fry them in a pan with olive oil or cook them on top of the potatoes.

For the potatoes:

6 potatoes, peeled and cut into triangles
1-2 lemons (juice)
2-3 cloves of garlic, squeezed or sliced
1/3-1/2 cup water
olive oil

Start by frying the potatoes. After about 5 minutes, when the potatoes are getting brown, add the lemon juice and the spices. Fry some more. Add the water and cook until the inside of the potatoes is soft and the outside is still crispy.

If you want to, you can also make the potatoes in the oven. Heat the oven at 180°C and cook the potatoes for 30-45 minutes. If you want to make the meatballs in the oven, on top of the potatoes, add them after 30 minutes and cook for another 30-45 minutes.

And since I have been eating this all my life: for dessert we had γαούρτι με μέλι και καρύδια, yoghurt with honey and nuts!

What Greek dishes do you like?


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