Giouvetsi with Chicken
Giouvetsi is a Greek recipe that really takes me back and makes me nostalgic for my Greek childhood! It is simple - traditionally, a meat dish (chicken, lamb or beef) cooked with pasta (often ‘kritharaki’ - orzo - as here) in a tomato sauce. Back at home it would traditionally be baked over fire in a clay pot - a güveç - hence the name! It is a recipe that goes back hundreds of years; the original one-pot meal.
Orzo is a great, versatile pasta. Only slightly bigger than grains of rice, orzo gives the dish body and is perfect at soaking up all the flavours created by the baking time. The delicious, tender chicken remains moist, whilst the vegetables infuse both flavour and goodness into the stew-like vegetable sauce. Top with cheese and it’s the perfect winter warmer, or weekend lunch.
Giouvetsi can be made with beef, lamb or chicken; the process remains the same.
When you bake it check occasionally if you need to add some water.
Continue by adding the grated onion, leek, pepper and garlic, and sauté them for another 4 minutes.
Add the tomato paste at the base of the pot and mix it for 1 minute to help remove its bitterness.
Finally, add the tomato sauce, warm water, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Stir and let them simmer for 10 minutes.
Pour the mixture in an ovenproof dish and bake in a preheated oven at 180ºC (350ºF) for 20 minutes.