Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Prawns with Ouzo...... Mood = An Italian In Greece

In Mykonos, my husbands best friend Fillip insisted we go to an Italian restuarant. To be honest i was not entirely thrilled at the thought. Italian food in Greece. On an Island. It just didnt make sense. I wanted to eat the fresh fish that i had come for, not pizza and pasta. But let me say 1 thing.... I probably had one of the best Italian meals i have had in my life. Unfortunately i didnt not take any pictures during this dinner but will explain it to you. Firstly we had about 6 pizzas to share, mussles with chilli and wine, bresaola with wild rucola, every kind of pasta, nutella and mascarpone calzone and fruit pizza. Also about 6 bottles of wine which kept appearing at the table.

The restaurant we went to was in such a quaint area in Mykonos totally away from everything. It was called Bandana. Somewhere i would most definitely go again and would recommend anyone who happens to be in mykonos to make sure they get there.

My favourite thing at the table was a linguine with prawns and Ouzo. It simply was so fresh and the taste surprised me as i was not looking for it. I recognised it immediately as we have something that is exactly the same in Middle eastern countries called Arak.

I came back to London and decided to try and recreate this dish. So here is my version of it although, it was not as good as the original, but very very close.


5 Tomatoes
4 Garlic cloves
24 Fresh prawns
Olive oil
200ml Ouzo
1 red chilli deseeded


* Slice the garlic and place in a pan with the olive oil on a medium heat. You dont want the garlic to get brown, you just literally want to simmer them and release the flavour.

* Cut the tomatoes into cubes and place into the pan adding soem dill and basil, salt and a teaspoon of sugar.

* Add the chilli

* Add the ouzo at this point and let the alcohol evaporate

* When the flavours have combined, add the prawns and let them simmer. Do not cook to quickly or ona high heat as this will turn the prawns rubbery.

* Mix and serve.

This is a very nice summery dish and the flavours are just incredible. So simple and so much impact. Try it to see what i am talking about and let me know your thoughts. I really dont like ouzo or arak but in this type of dish, it was the star of the show.


pav said...

The chef at Bandana (Gianluca) is a LEGEND! Amazing ideas and flavours...well done!

Joudie's version was pretty awesome too! That whole bottle of ouzo was consumed(hiccup)!! :)

Nessie said...

I've never had Ouzo or Arak before...what's it like? Is it easily substitutable? Your photo is gorgeous...look at those big juciy prawns - drool!

Joudie's Mood Food said...

Hey Nessie, thanks for dropping by. Arak or Ouzo both have this aniseed/ fennel taste to them. You can use Sambuca or Pastis, which are both aniseed flavoured liquors. Sambuca is Italian, Pastis is French, Ouzo is Greek and Arak is Middle Eastern!

shaz said...

Ooh, anything with prawns and I'm the first to the table. Ouzo however, not too sure about, but the dish looks so fresh and flavourful I think I'd definitely enjoy it.

Thanks so much for visiting my blog :) Glad to have found yours.

Joudie's Mood Food said...

Hi Shaz, glad you popped over! I am NOT a fan of ouzo but it really works in this dish as it leavs such a subtle flavour. I was craving this so badly which is weird. It is summery, fresh and different.

Janet said...


Anonymous said...

We loved you recepie. Ouzo does the trick. The taste was fantastic....