Greek Pork Kabobs with Orzo and Feta Pesto

Does anyone else believe that when you dream about a person who has passed away, it’s their way of visiting from heaven? My Yiayia has been in so many of my dreams lately – I think it’s her way of bringing me comfort and easing the heartache I sometimes feel when I think about her being gone. She was always fascinated with dreams and interpreting them, so I know it’s her way of staying close to me.

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In most of the dreams, we’re just catching up, which is what we would do at least once or twice a week while she was alive. When I sleep, she asks me a lot of questions and I tell her how much I miss her being around. Life is just not the same without her.

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I don’t think she’s been in my dreams this past week because I haven’t felt like I’ve seen her when I wake up in the morning. But then the other night I went in our freezer and found a little freezer bag full of the tiropitakia (Greek cheese triangles) she used to make me and I felt her there with me in that moment. I also have some of her marinated shish kabobs she brought over one day, but I can’t bring myself to cook either just yet.

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Her pork kabobs with rice was by far my favorite meal she used to make. I can still smell the aroma that used to fill up her house when she’d have Papou grill them on the balcony. Her kabobs always had the perfect amount of lemon, and her rice was the perfect buttery compliment.

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I decided to put a spin on my Yiayia’s classic dish yesterday and made pork kabobs (keeping the marinade she used to make the same) with orzo and feta pesto. All topped with a nice sprinkle of lemon juice and feta of course, because it wouldn’t be a Greek dish without either. I think Yiayia would have loved it. This is such a nice and fresh summer dish and it’s filled with Greek flavors to enjoy.

If you end up making it, don’t forget to tag #marinamakeseats!

Greek Pork Kabobs with Orzo and Feta Pesto

Ingredients

  • 1 – 1 1/2 pound pork tenderloin
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of pepper
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 pound of dried orzo

Feta Pesto

  • 2 cups of fresh basil leaves
  • ½ cup of toasted walnuts
  • 1/2 cup of olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • 1 cup of crumbled feta
  • Juice and zest of one lime

Directions 

Cut the pork tenderloin into one inch cubes. Place pork, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper and garlic in a freezer bag and let everything marinade for 30 minutes to 3 hours.

Next, make the pesto. Combine walnuts, olive oil and garlic in a food processor until smooth. Add the basil, feta, lemon juice and zest to the mixture and process until combined.

Once the meat is done marinading, place the cubes on skewers. Set your grill to a medium-high heat and cook the skewers for about 4-5 minutes on each side.

While the meat is on the grill, cook the orzo according to the packaging. Drain the pasta and mix with most of the pesto (you’ll likely have some left over). Top the orzo with the grilled pork kabobs, feta and a splash or two of lemon juice.

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