Sunday, 27 December 2009

Spetsofai (Σπετζοφάι)

Here's a well-known Greek sausage hotpot, from the region of Pelion. We had a nice version of this dish during our short stay in the region. This dish uses up soft tomatoes and scraggly peppers which are coming in at the tail end of the summer garden season; very soon, none of these plants will be producing any more crops.

You need:
a few tablespoons (at your will) of olive oil
a few bell peppers, preferably in all colours (I used about 18 distorted peppers from our garden; the number of peppers is not important - the more you add, the more this dish stretches)
3-4 soft ripe tomatoes
6 medium sausages (spicy ones are the best for this dish)
1-2 large onions (I particularly like onions, which is why I use a lot - you can also add leeks)
1 small teaspoon of tomato paste (I used Thai red curry paste, for a spunkier taste)
salt and pepper (if the sausages you use aren't very spicy, you can add spices like cumin, oregano, fresh garlic, chili)

spetsofai ingredients

Heat the oil and brown the sausages in it. Remove the sausages when done. Now add the thickly sliced onions and roughly chopped peppers. Saute till wilted, stirring constantly so that they don't fry or burn. Add the grated tomatoes, tomato paste and seasonings. While this mixture is blending in the pot on low heat, the sausages will have cooled down; chop them into medium sized slices and add them to the stew. The hotpot is ready when the sauce has thickened to a desired consistency.


Serve on a bed of rice (I made a delicious pilafi) or mashed potatos, with a green salad and some bread to mop up the sauce. And bring on the cold beer!

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