Giouvetsi recipe (Greek Beef stew with Orzo pasta)


  • 5 tablespoon(s) olive oil
  • 3 onions, large
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 leek
  • 1.200 g beef, leg, boneless, cut into 2 cm cubes
  • 2 stick(s) cinnamon
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon(s) cumin
  • 2 tablespoon(s) tomato paste
  • 150 ml red wine
  • 400 g canned tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoon(s) honey
  • 1 liter water
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 250 g orzo pasta, medium
  • 1/2 teaspoon(s) thyme
  • feta cheese, to serve
  • 1 bunch parsley, finely chopped, to serve
  • lemon zest, of 1 lemon, to serve

    step by step 
    • Preheat oven to 180* C (350* F) Fan.
    • Finely chop the onions.
    • Place a shallow pot over high heat and add 3 tablespoons olive oil.
    • Add the onions and sauté until nicely caramelized.
    • Quarter the carrots and chop them in to cubes.
    • Add them to the pot.
    • Coarsely chop the leek and add to the pot.
    • Stir and sauté for about 5 minutes, until they caramelize nicely. Add a little more olive oil, if necessary.
    • When ready, transfer to a bowl and set aside until needed.
    • Place pot back on heat and let it get very hot.
    • Add 2 tablespoons olive oil and the cubes of meat. Brown for 4-5 minute.
    • Add the sautéed vegetables, cinnamon sticks, bay leaves, cumin and tomato paste. Sauté the tomato paste for 1-2 minutes to help remove its bitterness. This also helps to thicken the sauce.
    • Add the wine and let it evaporate.
    • Add the honey, 250 ml water and the can of chopped tomatoes and stir.
    • Season with salt and pepper.
    • Lower heat to low and simmer for 1 ½ hours, until the meat is very soft and the sauce has thickened. If your sauce is too thick, add a little more water.
    • When ready, transfer to an  oven dish 
    • Place a pot over medium to high heat.
    • Add 3-4 tablespoons of olive oil and the orzo.
    • Sauté the orzo for 3-4 minutes, until golden.
    • When ready, add it over the meat in the oven proof dish.
    • Add 750 ml water, and fresh thyme. You can add any of your favorite herbs also.
    • Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes.
    • Remove foil and bake for another 15 minutes.
    • When ready, remove from oven. Sprinkle with finely chopped parsley, lemon zest and some freshly ground pepper

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