For the Keftedes
1 lb. lean ground beef
2 slices of stake bread, soaked in water then squeezed dry
1 medium onion, passed through a box grater
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 tsp. ground allspice
1 tsp. dried Greek oregano
1/2 tsp. ground pepper
1 tsp. sea salt (or to taste)
oil for frying
flour for dredging
For the Giouvetsi
1/2 cup of olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 green ( or red) bell pepper, seeded and diced
2 cups of krithiraki or orzo
1 tsp. smoked paprika
1/2 cup of pomodoro tomato sauce (passata)
6 cups of veal, chicken or vegetable stock
Salt and pepper to taste
freshly grated dried Mizithra cheese (or your fave cheese for topping pasta)
1 – In a bowl, add all of your keftedes ingredients and mix with your hands. Take a spoonful of the mixture and fry-off in a pan to taste-test adjust flavouring to your liking. Form the mixture into palm-sized meatballs then gently flatten to form keftedes.
2 – In a heavy-bottomed skillet, add some olive oil over medium-heat and while it’s heating, dredge your keftedes in some all-purpose flour. Fry-off your keftedes on both sides until golden-brown and set aside.
3 – In the same skillet, add the remaining olive oil and and your onions, garlic and green pepper and saute (all the while scraping up the brown bits with a wooden spoon) for 5-10 minutes or until the onions have softened. Now add your krithiraki and paprika and stir to coat and toast the pasta (for about 5 minutes).
4 – Add the tomato sauce, stock and bring to a boil while stirring. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
5 – Once everything has come to a boil, pour into a large casserole dish and place the reserved keftedes on top and bake in a preheated 375F oven for 45 minutes or until most of the liquid has absorbed and your top is golden brown.
6 – Let stand for 10 minutes and serve in large bowls with freshly grated black pepper and grated dry Mizithra cheese.