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You know sometimes when you just want to escape for a while to a beautiful sun drenched island in the middle of nowhere? well this weekend was one of those times! I decided to create a little Greek idyll right here. My task was greatly helped by the most amazing weather. Much easier to create the atmosphere without Hurricane Fred blowing a gale!

My destination of choice was of course Greece, and in particular the beautiful unspoilt island of Skopelos. Sounds familiar? well it should, it was where the amazing Meryl Streep joined the handsome Pierce Brosnan to film the timeless ‘Mamma Mia’

There was much preparation  to be done, and we started planning the meal. We had kebabs to begin, followed by an amazing dish of Greek lamb with orzo. This took a few hours to prepare and cook, but it was well worth the wait.

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Ingredients

  • 1kg shoulder of lamb
  • 2 onion
  • 1 tbsp chopped oregano
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 cinnamon stick, broken in half
  • 2 tbsp olive oil 
  • 400g can chopped tomato
  • 1.2l hot chicken or vegetable stock
  • 400gorzo
  • freshly grated parmesan

    Method

    1. Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Cut the lamb into 4cm chunks, then spread over the base of a large, wide casserole dish. Add the onions, oregano, cinnamon sticks, ground cinnamon and olive oil, then stir well. Bake, uncovered, for 45 mins, stirring halfway.
    2. Pour over the chopped tomatoes and stock, cover tightly, then return to the oven for 1½ hrs, until the lamb is very tender.
    3. Remove the cinnamon sticks, then stir in the orzo. Cover again, then cook for a further 20 mins, stirring halfway through. The orzo should be cooked and the sauce thickened. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan and serve with crusty bread.

    The wonderful thing about this meal is that it is all bascally cooked in one pot, so there is very little washing up.

The only way to finish off the perfect Greek evening on my island, was plenty of singing and dancing courtesy of … ‘Mamma Mia’

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I have watched this film soo many times (each time being reduced to tears at the wedding scene) but I never get tired of it – it has such a ‘feel good’ factor.

After a long, hot day it’s time to fall asleep a happy bunny. The only down side to my idyllic paradise, is that it’s now three days later and those intoxicating tunes are still flooding my head. Oh well small price to pay! x

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