Greek Lamb with Orzo

Greek Lamb With Orzo Recipe

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My mom found a recipe for Greek Lamb with Orzo in a magazine Cooking Light or Eating Well or one of those types and tried it out on us. It was a hit and became a mainstay of our family meals even today.


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25 Min
1 Hr
Stove Top


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1 lb
ground lamb
1 Tbsp
olive oil
1 large
yellow onion, finely chopped
6 clove
garlic, sliced thinly
2 tsp
ground cinnamon
1 tsp
dried oregano
1 1/2 tsp
ground cumin
2 tsp
ground coriander
1/2 tsp
crushed red pepper
28 oz can(s)
of whole tomatoes, drained and smooshed with your hands
14 oz can(s)
chopped/diced tomatoes
5 oz
fresh spinach, chopped
1 lb
orzo pasta
2 c
chopped fresh parsley
1/4 c
lemon juice, freshly squeezed
2 Tbsp
olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 c
kalamata olives, pitted and finely chopped
1/2 c
crumbled feta

How to Make Greek Lamb with Orzo


  • 1In a good sized Dutch oven or other heavy bottomed pan, heat the one tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat until it is shimmering. Add the lamb and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a good grinding of black pepper. Cook, stirring to break it apart, until it is nicely browned.
  • 2Remove the lamb with a slotted spoon and drain all but 2 tablespoons of the fat. Return the pot to the stove top and add the onion and garlic (still over medium high). Cook, stirring occasionally,until they are softened and golden,about 5 minutes.
  • 3Stir in the spices cinnamon,oregano,cumin, coriander and red pepper and cook until they start smelling extremely toasty and fragrant (1-2 minutes). Then stir in the smooshed tomatoes. Cook the smooshed tomatoes in the spices stirring occasionally for 10 minutes.
  • 4Then, add the can of diced tomatoes and 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil. Turn down to a simmer and simmer uncovered for 15 minutes. Add the cooked lamb back to the pot,give a good stir. Then cover the pot and leave it to cook,stirring from time to time for 20 minutes.
  • 5At this point, stir in the fresh spinach and cook just a couple more minutes until the spinach is wilted. Taste and add salt and pepper to taste (keeping in mind you'll be sprinkling just a touch of feta and olives on, which will add to the saltiness).
  • 6While the lamb and tomatoes are simmering together and marrying their flavors,bring a large pot of well-salted water (it should taste like sea water,basically) to a boil. Add the orzo and cook until al dente,about 7-8 minutes usually. Reserve 1/2 cup of pasta water.
  • 7Drain the orzo. Toss the orzo with the 2 tablespoons of olive oil,the lemon juice and all of the parsley. Add a bit of pasta water at a time if you feel it needs additional liquid. Spread the orzo out on an enormous serving platter.
  • 8Spoon the lamb and sauce all over the top,then sprinkle with the feta and chopped olives. Pass the dish around the table and relax. A good red wine on the dry side,is a highly recommended companion here.

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