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Festal (Non-Lenten) Recipes
Note: This page will be updates as various recipes are
submitted/collected. This is a mixed bag of recipes, which will
be added to until there's enough of them to catagorize. Please
help with your contributions of Orthodox holiday recipes!
Forty Martyrs Meatballs
- 1 1/2 pounds ground lamb
- 2 cloves garlic, pressed
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 3 teaspoons dried mint
- 1/2 cup pine nuts
- 1/2 cup parsley, finely chopped
- 1/2 tsp allspice or coriander
- 1 tbs vegetable oil
- Combine the lamb with the garlic, salt to taste, pepper,
mint, pine nuts and parsley.
- Mix thoroughly. Form into 40 meat balls about 1 1/4
inches in diameter. (Make it easy;divide the meat into 4
parts, divide each part into 10 meatballs).
- Heat the oil in a large skillet. Saute the meatballs
until nicely browned on the outside, but still a little
pink on the inside. Turn them often with a spatula.
- Remove excess grease as it is rendered. Serve the
meatballs on a bed of lettuce in 5 rows of 8 each or
someother clearly numerical arrangement.
- With them serve Rice or Bulghur Pilaf Variation. (In a
number of countries a special dish is prepared once a
year to honor the memory of the Forty Martyrs of
Sebaste... In Aremenia they eat forty stuffed wheat balls
(whose ingredients are hard to come by in this country);
in Greece as well the Forty Martyrs are honored by the
eating of dishes that stress the number 40. There are
pies made with forty layers of phyllo pastry, dishes
consisting of forty pancakes or made with 40 kinds of
Kefallinian Ascension Meat Pie
- 1 sm leg of lamb, boned & cut into 1" pieces
- juice of one lemon
- 1/4 c olive oil or butter
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3 md potatoes, parboiled in their jackets, peeled &
- 1 lg carrot, parboiled & diced
- 3 c white rice, parboiled & drained
- 2 tbs tomato puree
- 1 c feta cheese, crumbled
- 1/2 c chopped fresh parsley
- 2 sprigs fresh mint, chopped
- 1 tbs dried oregano
- 1 garlic clove, sliced
- 1 tbs cinnamon
- 1 orange or lemon peel, cut into pieces
- salt & freshly ground pepper
- 16 filo sheets
- 6 tbs butter (or more), melted
- 3 hard-boiled eggs, quartered
- (Note - On the island of Kefallinia in the Ionion Sea,
the Feast Day of Analipseos (Ascension Day) is celebrated
with the traditional "kreatopita" (meat-pie).
This spicy pie also ushers in the beginning of Lent on
the day of Apokreas.)
- In a stock pot, cover the lamb bones with cold water.
Simmer covered for 1 hour.
- Strain, boil down to 1 cup, and set aside.
- Sprinkle the lemon juice on the lamb cubes.
- Heat the oil or butter in a heavy pan, add the onions and
lamb, and saute the meat on all sides until the onions
are soft without browning.
- Pour the onions, lamb, and juices into a large bowl.
- Add the diced potatoes and carrot, rice, tomato puree,
cheese, parsley, mint, oregano, garlic, cinnamon, and
fruit peel and season with salt and freshly ground
- Add enough reserved lamb broth for liquid while pie
bakes, then mix with a wooden spoon.
- Butter the bottom and sides of a 9 x 12 x 3 inch pan.
- Spread 8 filo sheets, brushing the melted butter in
between the sheets, making sure the pastry fits the sides
and bottom of the pan.
- Pour in the filling, spreading evenly with a spatula.
- Place the egg quarters here and there across the top and
cover with the remaining filo sheets, brushing with
butter as before. Flute the edges with two fingers or a
fork and brush the top with butter.
- Using a sharp knife, score the top 3 filo sheets into
square or diamond shapes, or prick the homemade pastry
with a fork.
- Bake for 40 to 50 minutes in moderately slow oven (325
F), raising the temperature to 350 F during the last 10
- Remove from the oven and let stand on a rack for 15
minutes. Remove from the oven and let stand on a rack for
15 minutes. Cut into diamonds or squares and serve warm.
(From: Vilma Liacouras Chantiles)