Greek Orthodox Easter is near and I thought I should write about Magiritsa (aka Magheritsa, Mageiritsa, Mayeritsa, Mayiritsa), the soup we eat after midnight, after the Resurrection.
This is the tradional Greek recipe so it has intestines (Sofia wrote an explanatory post as this might seem a bit yucky). However, if you can’t get intestines where you are (or if you just find them disgusting) just omit them.
The secret with getting a good magiritsa soup is to do it slowly. The avgolemono process (explained below) has to happen after the main cooking is done and the soup has had a chance to rest.
In Greece you would normally go to Church in between so that gives the soup about an hour (or even more). This is why in this horrible picture I’m in my “home” clothes. It’s the ‘before Church’ cooking stage.
Avgolemono is a double word from avgo(egg) and lemoni (lemon). It’s a way to create a soup or sauce. (It’s also a song by So Tiri which cracks me up every time as well as every other Greek I know). Maybe I ‘ll do a video at some point of how you make it as it’s a bit tricky but it’s the ultimate soup. I’m convinced it’s the reason why the phrase “chicken soup for the soul” was invented. The person who first said it had just had avgolemono chicken soup.
From the Saffron squash & carrot soup with youvarlakia (tiny meatballs) recipe
Magiritsa by Mama Despoina
- about 1 kilo of the lamb’s (the one you would roast the next day) liver, heart, kidneys and small intestine
- 2 tender lettuces
- 2 onions
- about 10 spring onions
- half a cup of white rice (for soups or risottos)
- 2 eggs
- 2 lemons
- olive oil
Also see all the step by step photos below
- Start with the small intestine in the morning. You should wash them under plenty or running water and do this for both sides. Get something to help you (like a chopstick), insert in the instestines, reach the end of the tube, turn inside out, wash and repeat.
- Leave the intestines in a bowl of water with plenty of red wine vinegar for at least 2 hours. This will take away the smell and will whiten them.
- Take the eggs and lemons out of the fridge.
Note: If you can’t find intestines just omit them.
- Put all the intestines, liver etc. in some boiling water for 10 minutes.
- Take them out, get rid of the water and let them cool down.
- Cut them in little cubes
- Pour some good extra virgin olive oil in the pan and add your chopped up onion
- Add the intestines, liver etc. cubes with salt and pepper. Keep turning them for about 3-4 minutes
- Add the lettuces roughly cut, the spring onions finely cut, as well as the dill and parsley.
- Add boiling water (covering everything) and simmer for about 20 minutes.
- PAUSE – time to go to church (or just watch some telly)
- After about half an hour to an hour turn on the heat once more. Once the soup is at boiling point add the rice and simmer for about 10 minutes (or check the instructions of your rice).
- Start preparing the avgolemono. Beat the eggs, then add the lemon juice then go on beating.
- Take the soup off the heat and with a ladle start adding soup to the avgolemono bowl extremely slowly. VERY slowly. This is to bring both to the same temperature (otherwise you’ll end up with boiled egg bits in your soup).
- Once you have a lot of soup in the bowl and it feels a similar temperature, put everything back in the pan and stir vigorously.
- You may like to put the pan on the heat, very gently for about 2-3 minutes but it’s not strictly neccessary.
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