Traditional Magiritsa recipe (Greek Easter soup)
Posted in Boiled, Intermediate, Main Courses, Mainland Greece, Our hand picked recipes, Traditional Greek Easter recipes Originally published on March 28, 2014 Last updated on April 18, 2015 By Eli K. Giannopoulos
A traditional Greek Magiritsa recipe (Greek easter soup) only for the lovers of the authentic Greek cuisine! Magiritsa is a unique and controversial Greek soup made from lamb offal and romaine (cos) lettuce, garnished with fresh herbs and finished of with a delicious egg lemon sauce (Avgolemono).
Magiritsa recipe (Greek Easter soup) – A traditional Greek Easter delicacy
This traditional magiritsa recipe is the dinner prepared and served in almost every household in Greece on Holy Saturday, while the main Easter meal served on Easter Sunday is spit roasted lamb. The authentic magiritsa recipe is designed to use the leftover parts of the lamb so that nothing went to waste. Magiritsa is served after the midnight church services to break the 40 day Great Lent period and is considered to be best meal after the fasting period to gradually ease your digestive system back into its meat eating habits.
Traditional Magiritsa recipe (Greek Easter soup) – Variations
One can find many variations of this traditional Greek magiritsa recipe. Some regional versions also use rice, while the Peloponesian magiritsa recipe calls for freshly grated tomatoes. In some parts of Greece it is served as a Fricassee rather than a soup, with a variety of vegetables while others prefer to prepare it with lamb, veal, or only with liver. Nowadays, magiritsa is also commonly served as a vegetarian soup, prepared mainly with mushrooms and vegetable stock along with rice, fresh herbs and egg lemon sauce. Some magiritsa recipes also use the neck and head of the lamb to prepare a stock for the soup. While making the stock can be time consuming it gives a really unique flavour and taste to the soup.
- 1 kg lamb offal (heart, liver, lungs and other organs)
- intestines from 1 lamb (optional)
- 1 large red onion, finely chopped
- 5-6 spring onions, finely chopped
- 3 medium romaine (cos) lettuce, roughly chopped
- 4-5 tbsps fresh dill, chopped
- 1/2 cup rice (optional)
- 1/2 a cup olive oil
- salt and freshly ground pepper
For the egg lemon sauce (Avgolemono)
- 2 eggs
- juice of 2 lemons
- To prepare this traditional Greek magiritsa recipe, clean and wash thoroughly the organs and set aside. Wash thoroughly the intestines under running water, rub them with sea salt and lemon juice and wash again. (To wash them more easily you can either slice them up lengthwise or turn them inside out.)
- In a large pot add the organs and plenty of water and bring to the boil. Blanch the organs in the hot water for about 3-5 minutes. Add the intestines and blanch for 5 more minutes. Drain and set aside to cool down for a while. Chop in small pieces and remove the excessive fat.
- Heat a large pot over medium heat and add the olive oil, the chopped onions and the meat. Sauté for 5-6 minutes, until browned. Add 2-3 glasses of hot water and simmer for about 10 minutes. Add the roughly chopped lettuce squeezing them down to fit and place the lid on. Cook for 10 minutes, remove the lid and season. Stir well and cook the magiritsa with the lid on for about 40-50 more minutes. (If you choose to make this magiritsa recipe with rice, stir in the rice about 10 minutes before the end of cooking time.)
- Prepare the egg lemon sauce for the magiritsa. Start off by separating the egg whites from the egg yolks. In a bowl, whisk the egg yolks and add the lemon juice whist whisking until combined. In another bowl add the egg whites and whisk using a hand mixer until the egg whites are foamy and thick. While whisking slowly add the yolk mixture in the egg whites. Continue whisking for 1-2 minutes and gradually add 1-2 ladles of the hot broth from the magiritsa, a litte bit at a time. Make sure you add the broth slowly or the egg whites will curdle! When done, pour the mixture back into the pot and add the chopped dill. Stir well, place the lid on and leave aside for 5 minutes. (See also some tips to make the perfect Avgolemono).
- Ladle the magiritsa (Greek Easter soup) while still warm into bowls and sprinkle with freshly ground pepper. Enjoy!
- (If you like to prepare a stock form the lamb head and neck for the magiritsa, wash thoroughly the head and neck and place in a large pot, along with two red onions. Pour in enough water to cover, season and simmer for approx. 1 hour, skimming the surface. When the meat falls from the bones, remove the pot from the stove and strain the stock. Let the stock cool down completely and skim the fat. Use the stock and equal amount of water to prepare the magiritsa soup.)