In Greece the most famous saganaki is the cheese saganaki or Tyri Saganaki a dish that you can find as appetizer in many restaurants. There are many other saganaki recipe one of them is the delicious shrimps saganaki ( γαρίδες σαγανάκι, garides saganaki) recipe shrimps and Feta cheese. We should also mention the mussels saganaki (μύδια σαγανάκι, midia saganaki), calamari saganaki (Σουπιές σαγανάκι, supies saganaki), eggplant saganaki (Μελιτζάνες σαγανάκι, melitzanes saganaki) and many more recipes with vegetables (as Σαγανάκι με λαχανικά χωριάτικο και ανθότυρο, vegetables saganaki with white cheese).
What is a saganki? These kind of dishes have been named by the small frying (saganaki = diminutive of sagani) pan used to prepare this delish, these metal frying pan are provided by one or two handles (no wood or plastic handles) and are suitable for the stove as well for the oven. “Sagan” comes from the Turkish word sahan ‘copper dish’, itself borrowed from Arabic صحن (ṣaḥn).
The same phenomenon happened with the word “paella” (Spanish, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paella) and “tiella” (Italian, http://cucina.grandinetti.org/recipes/sides-and-vegetables/tiella).
Today as I was coming home from work started to plan our supper. We had quite warm days during the last two weeks, but evening, after sun disappeared, we feel that the winter is approaching and I wish a warm place. And what’s the best? The fireplace, the chimney! OK, and how with the dinner? No problem, I’m used to handle with the fire and I will prepare the dinner on the open fire. It was in that way that I created this recipe, an almost summer recipe, with summer vegetables, with shrimps and with the heat of the fire.
I have a paella pan, which is perfect for 3-5 persons and I can use this as saganaki (or sagani, as it is not “small”).
In the freezer I had a portion of shrimps, the vegetables were already at home and I also had a great homemade bread which was perfect to be combined with this dish.
The flavor was fantastic and smoked component made this dish even better.
If you don’t have a chimney, you can work on the stove top and after adding the feta and shrimps, place pan in the preheated oven. I suppose that with the BBQ may work as well, if provided of lid.
Shrimps Saganaki with Vegetables
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 big onion, sliced
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 big eggplant, diced
- 1 zucchini, diced
- 1 red pepper, sliced
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1 cup salted water
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 200-300 g feta, crumbled
- 24 medium shrimp, deveined
This procedure had been performed on the open fire, you can prepare the recipe on the stove (or in the oven under the broiler) and from step 7 in the preheated oven (220°C/430°F) or continue on the stove covering the pan with a lid.
- Heat oil in a fireplace proofed skillet as a paella pan.
- Add onions and stir fry until they change the color.
- Add garlic and eggplants. Stir fry until they start to turn soft
- Add zucchini and peppers, stir fry again for about 5 minutes.
- Add salted water and cook until zucchini becomes to turn soft, but not too much.
- Add salted water, season with salt and pepper and bring to boil.
- Now it’s time for the last step: add crumbled feta and shrimps. When the shrimps turn pink, the saganaki is ready! Enjoy with bread!
- Broth instead salted water
- In not on the fire add little smoked paprika
- Vegetables of your choice, roasted cherry tomatoes are wonderful
- Replace with water
- Add ouzo
- Eggs instead of shrimps (for vegetarians)
- Prepare in the oven on single ramequins molds
- Combine with noodles
- Top with parsley
- Serve with lemon wedges