KOKORETSI; A Sunday Easter Tradition For Every Greek Household!

 


The Orthodox Easter is the biggest celebration in the Greek Orthodox religion. It is celebrated by millions of Christian Orthodox around the world, with Greeks, Cypriots and Russians to hold the majority and is usually a week after the Catholic Easter. The greek Orthodox Easter is {another excuse} to gather around the “table” with family and friends and to eat as much as you can handle, since there are plenty of lamb & meat dishes that are very popular at the time. The family members are starting from the early hours of Sunday night with Magiritsa Soup, and continue with a huge blowout, that includes extravagant food, all the way to the early hours of Easter Monday. Lamb, alcohol and traditional folklore dances are the main protagonists for this 24 hours. Food is any
 possible piece of lamb, your mind can think of, tones of raki, ouzo and wines. Ovelias {that’s whole lamb} are spitting on charcoal, along with kokoretsi, kontosouvli & souvla, rack of roast lamb is cooked the oven and lamarinas {huge stainless steel trays} are filled with roasted herb & lemon potatoes, while all kind of Greek salads, tzatsiki & other side Middle Eastern side dishes, pita and other breads are prepared and  served in nearly every household for Easter Sunday, as lunch (brunch, dinner, supper and in between) ready to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

 

Kokoretsi kokoreç (Turkish) is a dish of the Balkans, Azerbaijan, Iranian Azerbaijan and Turkey consisting of lamb or goat intestines wrapped around seasoned offal, including sweetbreads, hearts, lungs, or kidneys, and typically grilled; a variant consists of chopped innards cooked on a griddle. The intestines of suckling lambs are preferred.
Place of origin: Ottoman Empire
Main ingredients: Lamb or goat intestine’s, offal (sweetbreads, hearts, lungs or kidneys) (wiki)

 

The Ingredients

EASTER  |  TRADITIONAL  |  GREEK  |  MEAT

 

2 kilos lamb intestines
50 g vinegar
a great pinch of kosher salt
1 lamb lace fat
1 lamb pluck and sweetbreads
3- 5 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons dry thyme
2 tablespoons rosemary
2 tablespoons oregano
 juice from 2 lemons
zest of 2 lemons
pepper

Kokoretsi Recipe in the Oven

Start by washing the intestines thoroughly both inside and out
and put them in a large bowl and add the vinegar and salt
Allow to soak for 10 minutes and then rinse thoroughly again
Drain and transfer to a clean bowl
Refrigerate for 2 hours
In the meantime, place the lace fat in a bowl and rinse under warm running water thoroughly
Let it soak in the bowl with water and lemon juice for 30 minutes
Drain and set aside
Wash the lamb pluck and chop into 4-5 cm pieces
Transfer to a bowl and add the thyme, rosemary, oregano, lemon zest and pepper.
Do not add salt from the beginning or else it will toughen the meat
Set it aside to marinate for 1-2 hours
Preheat oven to 200C
You will need two 30 cm metallic skewers (for the kokoretsi)
Thread the pieces of lamb pluck on the skewers in the alternating in the following order : lungs, heart, liver, sweetbreads
Season with salt and pepper
Cut off a piece of lace fat large enough to cover the whole skewer and wrap nicely over the meat
Wrap the intestines around the meat to cover and tighten at the edge of the skewer
This process needs patience and quite a lot of intestines
Wrap with parchment paper and aluminum foil
Transfer to a baking pan fitted with a rack and bake for 45 minutes
When ready, remove the aluminum foil and parchment wrappings and bake again for 20 minutes until golden
{You can also add the grill option}

When ready served with Greek roasted potatoes, baked in sunflower oil, 1 glass of lemon, thyme and fresh oregano.

You can also use pitta bread and yogurt or tzatziki for a kokoretsi pitta wrap.