Hilopites is one of those dishes that make Greeks abroad warm and fuzzy with nostalgia at the mention; the type of food your grandma makes the best.
Traditionally homemade, these Greek egg noodles have the shape of broken tagliatelle – sometimes long, and sometimes tiny little squares. If you can’t find homemade hilopites, try to find a good brand. If you can’t find them at all, substitute tagliatelle, or your noodles of choice.
Wash, dry and season the rooster pieces.
Heat half the oil in a large pan, and sauté the rooster pieces on high heat for 5-6 minutes until they are browned on all sides and come away from the pan easily.
Add onions, sauté for a further 2-3 minutes, add garlic and sauté for 1 minute.
Add tomato and bay leaf, lower the heat and simmer for about 30 minutes covered without adding any more fluids.
Remove the breast pieces and continue cooking the rest for another 15 minutes. If the rooster is free range, it could use another 30 minutes for the breast and another 40 minutes for the other parts as the meat may be tougher.
Add a bit more tomato if needed.
Around 10 minutes before cooking is finished, add stock (or water) and hilopites. Turn up the heat and cook according to the instructions on the package.
Add breast pieces back into the pan, remove from heat and add mint, salt and pepper and the rest of the olive oil.
Stir gently, leave to sit for 10 minutes for the meat to rest. Serve with grated cheese.
Wine recommendation: A Messenian Cabernet Sauvignon.
This recipe was previously published in Greek at gastronomos.gr.
1 rooster, roughly 1.5 kg, cut into 6-8 pieces
200 g. onions, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic
800 g. fresh tomatoes, finely chopped
1 bay leaf
400 ml chicken stock or water
400 g. hilopites, medium length (or tagliatelle)
100 g. grated dry mizithra
1/4 bunch fresh mint, finely chopped
100 ml olive oil
salt, freshly ground pepper