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Spanak i Oriz (Spinach & Rice)

This recipe is for Spanak i Oriz (Macedonian spinach and rice). It is so simple, very healthy and does not take very long to prepare.

Traditionally, this recipe is baked with cracked eggs on top. However, I personally don't like the baked version, so I kept mine as a 'mandza' or stew. If you prefer the traditional version, just continue on from the end of my recipe by transferring your 'mandza' to a baking dish and bake until a thick consistency is reached. Crack the eggs on top of the baked rice, and allow them to cook before removing from oven.

This recipe can be eaten during Lent if you boil the onion instead of frying; and exclude the oil in the 'zaprska' and replace with water.




Ingredients (serves 4 people):
  
  • 300gm of chopped baby spinach leaves (or fresh/frozen spinach)
  • 1 brown onion
  • 1 carrot (optional)
  • 100 to 150gm white rice (depending on desired consistency)
  • Vegeta, salt and pepper to taste
  • Bay leaf (optional)

    Zaprska (thickener):
  • 1 - 2 tablespoons of plain flour
  • 1 - 2 tablespoons of red paprika
  • 20 - 30 mls of vegetable oil (can substitute with water if fasting)

    Method:
      
    1. Finely chop onion, carrot and spinach. Tip: you can buy frozen spinach which is already chopped.

    2. Fry carrot and onion together until onion is clear and glassy.

    3. Add onion, carrot, spinach and rice to saucepan full of boiling water and cook together, stirring continuously.

    4. Add Vegeta, bay leaf (optional), salt and pepper.

    5. Once rice has cooked, remove from stove and make the 'zaprska.'

    6. Stir through the 'zaprska with the spinach and rice.

    7. Serve with Buttermilk or Greek Yoghurt.

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