Meatball Soup (Youvarlakia Avgolemono) A perfect winter warmer!

Posted on 30 January, 2017 by odyseaadmin There have been 0 comments


There's no doubt that Greeks love meatballs! These versatile, round, juicy little delicacies can be spiced and herbed in various ways, enough to cater for every mood. There are classic Greek meatball recipes where they are fried, baked, grilled or stewed showing off each time how simple ingredients can make a meal to nourish both your body and soul.


Greek cuisine has an affinity for meatballs: keftethakia; the classic fried meatballs with fresh herbs; soutzoukakia: sophisticated and fragrant meatballs with cumin slowly cooked in a luxurious tomato sauce; biftekia: the good old grilled burgers and finally: youvarlakia! A tongue twister name for these rice meatballs in a velvety lemony soup that is so delicious and heart-warming, especially in the cold winter months.

Winter soups warm your heart and sustain you in cold weather. There is no surprise then, why youvarlakia soup, represent one of the Greek's most loved comfort recipes. The mince meat mix is simple: salt, pepper, a generous handful of chopped parsley and a handful of rice or barley that helps each meatball bind and hold its shape. The meatballs are then cooked in a simmering broth. As the rice swells, each ball turns into a satisfying, balanced mix of protein and starchy carbs. Yum! In the pot, there are always some vegetables added for extra flavour, a carrot and perhaps some celery. The magic of this dish though is in the broth. We call youvarlakia a soup, but it is not exactly a soup. There is broth, just enough to wet the dish but never to fully cover.  In truth, youvarlakia is rice meatballs in a rich, velvety broth.

In order to give that supreme velvety texture to the broth, you need to make “avgolemono”, an egg and lemon emulsion that adds to the dish an extra-special touch. There is a bit of chemistry and a bit of skill for the perfect avgolemono. If you are trying this for the first time you may need another person to help you. First, you beat the eggs with a fork or a balloon whisk in a deep plate; then you add a generous ladleful of hot but off-the-boil stock (the extra person can do that for you whilst you keep beating gently), followed by slowly pouring the freshly squeezed lemon juice. You add the final product back into the pot, give it a gentle all-round shake and what you’re looking at is the ultimate crowd pleaser and a true winner if you like citrus, zesty flavours.


You can find the recipe for Youvarlakia in the recipe section of our website here

This post was posted in Recipes


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