Greek seafood yiouvetsi recipe

Taste for Travel Greek food writer Georgia Gerardis

A Greek seafood yiouvetsi recipe will hit the spot at this time of year. Greek Orthodox Lent is just around the corner and that’s the time of year – 40 days before Easter – many Greeks abstain from eating meat. It starts on March 18. Seafood becomes an even more important part of the diet. The more devout also refrain from eating dairy products and oil. But the kitchens will be busy creating tasty dishes, and just before Easter the cooks go ballistic baking pites, cookies and preparing for the roast lamb that signifies Greek Easter Sunday.

We are just emerging from a very cold winter on my island of Rhodes, and looking forward to the warmth of the Mediterranean sun. Travellers to Rhodes are few over the winter months, although the cruise ships dock in the main port all year round, but already tourist shops are opening up and soon the visitors will be back.

Here’s my recipe for Greek seafood yiouvetsi, which includes large shrimp and mussels, and the pasta which looks more like big grains of rice. It’s my favourite seafood dish. I hope you like it.


8 large tiger shrimps (No 3)
½ cup frozen mussels –no shell
8 fresh mussels with shell
1/2 cup of baby calamaris –squids
3 spring onions, finely chopped
½ red bell pepper cut in small cubes
1 ripe tomato, grated
½ cup of tomato sauce (not ketchup!)
¼ cup of finely chopped parsley
1 tbsp of butter
3 tbsp of olive oil
½ cup of orzo pasta (Barilla has thin orzo)
4 cups of vegetable stock
10 ml Ouzo
¼ cup of crumbled Greek feta
Salt and pepper to taste
Rocket leaves for garnish


  • In a deep pan add butter and olive oil and fry the shrimps (heads on) on both sides. Add the squid (in rings), mussels and spring onions.
  • Add ouzo and cover the pan with a lid and simmer a few seconds. Discard any mussels that refuse to open.
  • Remove the shrimps and let aside.
  • Add grated tomato and tomato sauce; simmer for another 2 minutes on low heat.
  • Now you can add the orzo and stir for a few seconds before adding the hot vegetable stock. (I use the thinnest local orzo in the market, the size of rice, which needs approx. 10 min to cook) stir constantly until cooked.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste. (It should be a nice thin consistency because the orzo will continue absorbing the juices after turning off heat.)
  • Sprinkle parsley on top and stir. Divide into 4 dishes and sprinkle some crumbled feta on each. Add the shrimps and rocket leaves. Rustic bread is a must for this recipe. Kali Orexi!
  • Preparation time: 12 min
  • Cooking time: 25 min and it serves 4.

Greek seafood yiouvetsi recipe

By the way, I really loved Heather’s post on vintage travel posters. It includes a lovely French depiction of my island, so here’s the poster again, and please check out her post! Romance of vintage travel posters

Rhodes Greece vintage travel posters


3 thoughts on “Greek seafood yiouvetsi recipe

  1. Can’t wait to try this. Can I use shrimp without the heads (since with are often hard to find in my area) and confirming that rocket is arugula. this almost sounds like a Greek Bouillabaisse over Orzo.


  2. Of course, you can Brian. These shrimps were rather small and I use the heads to enchance the taste and keep their shape or else they curl. If you cannot find very thin orzo( the thick is not recommened since it becomes too fat when absorbing the juices) go for risoni by Barilla. Thank you for your comment and have a wonderful day! 🙂


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