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Baked Prawns with Tomato and Feta

17 October 2013 / 18:10:59  GRReporter
3904 reads

Danielle Lachana

The different countries of the Mediterranean, from Italy and Slovenia at the northernmost border, to Libya, Egypt and Israel in the south, are united by a cuisine that exploits the fruit and vegetables of the land, the produce from the sea and the sunny climes.

 Every week, in this column, I will be presenting a Mediterranean recipe - and will eventually cover all of the Mediterranean countries*, which are officially 21 in number, (or 22 if we are to include Gibraltar - although is not technically a 'country' but a territory). You can find the countries listed below together with a map.

For now, however, where better place to start our journey than from the base of GRReporter, and my current ''homeland'', Greece!

Happy Tasting! Kali Orexi!

GARIDES YOUVETSI  (Baked Prawns with Tomato and Feta).

 

 

Traditionally made in Greece in ovenproof clay or earthenware cooking pots  called ''Youvetsi'' (or ''Giouvetsi''), from where the recipe takes its name, you can make this in any other casserole or ovenproof dish - 1 large or 6 individual ones. Alternatively, this dish can be prepared in a small frying pan and then it is called ''Garides Saganaki'': the word saganaki  is a diminutive of sagani, a frying pan with two handles. You can also find it in restaurants in Greece under the name ''Garides Mikrolimano'' and ''Garides Tourkolimano'' referring to an area near the Port of Piraeus where prawns (garides) are plentiful.

* * *

RECIPE

Serves 6 as an appetizer

 INGREDIENTS:

 1.5 kg prawns [US Shrimp], shelled and deveined (but tails, and if liked also heads, left on) -

You can find a link for this preparation method here:

  • 800 g tinned tomatoes, pureed, or 1.5 kg ripe fresh, peeled and deseeded tomatoes
  • 200 g feta cheese, roughly chopped
  • 100 ml dry white wine (or 1 tbsp ouzo or brandy)
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large green pepper, thinly sliced (optional)
  • 4 tbsp fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Chilli pepper (fresh or ground) or cayenne (optional)
  • 1 tbsp butter + 2 tbsp olive oil

 METHOD

Heat the butter with the oil in a frying pan over high heat and sauté the prepared and washed prawns for about 2 minutes until lightly coloured.

Remove the prawns, reduce heat to medium and sauté the onions with the green pepper until wilted.

Add the white wine (or ouzo, or brandy) and cook off until reduced by half.

Add the tomatoes and simmer for about 10 minutes until slightly thickened.

 Remove from the heat, add the parsley, prawns and a little salt to taste (remembering that the feta will be salty). Add freshly ground black pepper, or the chilli or cayenne pepper if using.

Transfer to an ovenproof dish, or individual dishes, and sprinkle with the chopped feta.

Bake, uncovered, in a pre-heated oven at 220° C (425° F, Gas Mark 7) for about 15 minutes, or until the prawns are cooked, the cheese has melted and is golden brown on top.

 Variations:

Although this dish is usually served as an appetizer it can also be served as a main course over rice or pasta (Linguine pasta is especially good - see below).

 

 * The Mediterranean countries are those countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea, namely: (In alphabetical order) Albania, Algeria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Cyprus, Egypt, France, [Gibraltar], Greece, Israel, Italy, Lebanon, Libya, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, Slovenia, Spain, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey.

Tags: Mediterranean cuisine Food Greek recipes baked prawns garides garides youvetsi prawns and feta
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