Mediterranean

Mediterranean spring salsa goes Keto

Mediterranean early spring is tricky! One day you might find yourself under the rays of the warm sun, wanting to take all your winter clothes off, while on the next day the northern Bura wind freezes you to the bone. This is the time when people here catch a cold! Why? Well, it’s not because of the cold wind, it’s because their immune system usually suffers when the temperature fluctuates that much!

What is Bura? (From Wikipedia)

It is known in Greek as μπόρα (mpóra, pronounced bora) and Italian as bora. In English, the name bora is used. The Croatian name bura and Slovene burja are not etymologically related to bora; they derive from Common Slavic burja ‘storm’ (from the verb *burĭti) and the meaning ‘bora’ developed later.[3]

The same root as bora is found in the name of the Greek mythological figure of Boreas (Βορέας), the North Wind. Historical linguists speculate that the name may derive from a Proto-Indo-European root *gworh- meaning “mountain” and giving rise to Germanic burg and berg.[4] A similar pattern is seen in the cognate name of the buran winds of central Asia and the name purgaof their Siberian subtype.

How to boost the immune system in spring?

Unlike Non-Ketonian belief, Ketonians know that eating lots of fruits, or taking supplements and artificial vitamins will not help! Staying in Ketosis, on the other side, could do the trick. 😉

Ever since we’ve gone Keto, and it has been 2 years now, the standard springtime cold did not happen! And believe me, before that, I was sick for a week or two during the transition period. Each year, particularly in March, I would suffer and catch a cold or whatever virus was around.

Learning about proper nutrition is a long process and sometimes it’s a rocky road. But what’s interesting, eating organic meat, eggs and adding herbs and spices with anti-inflammatory ingredients such as goat butter, bone broth and adding great herbs really helped my ability to stay healthy!

The history of Salsa 

The records of Salsa sauce began with the Inca people. Salsa (a mixture of hot peppers, tomatoes and other spices) can be drawn back to the Aztecs, Mayans and Incas. The Spaniards first encountered tomatoes after their conquest of Mexico in 1519-1521, which might lead you to believe that we did not have salsa in Europe before that. But think twice, Ancient Greeks and Romans loved stews and saices!

Ok, maybe we did not have tomatoes, but we knew how to make a good sauce! The Aztec combined tomatoes with chilli peppers, ground pumpkin seeds and consumed this mixture with meat and fish. This combination was finally called “salsa” by Alonso de Molina in 1571.

Roman reference

Let’s travel back to 100 A.D. – The Romans used sauces to mask the flavour of the food which originally wasn’t as palatable as they wanted. Most probably they did it to conceal questionable freshness. Maybe this could be the origin of the world famous Bolognese sauce?

Food & Cooking in Roman Britain by Marian Woodman:

The main course or primae mensai varied both in the number and elaboration of dishes. Roast and boiled meat, poultry, game or other meat delicacies would be served. No dish was complete without its highly flavoured and seasoned sauce.

What is Ragù?

If you happen to find yourself in Italy, you will not find Bolognese sauce anywhere! They simply call it Ragú! In Grece, this kind of sauce is simply called minced meat  – Kimá (κιμά). But Spaniards gave it a really descriptive name, didn’t they? When you think of salsa, you feel energised, and you want to dance. Well, at least I do!

Salsa is so versatile, you can use just about any meat and spices. However, this version is designed to target all your desires for the flavours and aromas you can find in south-eastern Europe. I am talking about a Greek-inspired dish, but with some different ingredients that are used in various Mediterranean countries.

Are you ready for this Eurotrip? Take the Orient Express, please – Let’s steam things up! 😉 

Mediterranean Keto Salsa

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Keto Mediterranean
Keyword: Salsa
Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • 2 tbsp goat butter
  • 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 2 medium spring onions
  • 600 g (21 oz) minced lamb
  • 1 small red horn pepper preferably hot
  • 2 large yolks
  • 200 ml bone broth
  • 100 g goat or sheep Feta crumbled

Spices

  • 1 tsp sea salt we used flower of sea salt
  • 2/3 tsp red, black and white pepper mixture freshly ground
  • 1 tsp dried peppermint
  • 1/2 tsp ground bay leaves
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1 tbsp red paprika powder Hungarian, sweet or hot
  • 1 tsp Ceylon cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard without added sugar
  • 2 tbsp parsley leaves finely chopped

Instructions

  • Melt the butter and mix it with olive oil in a deep skillet. Add finely chopped spring onion and garlic. After 2 minutes, add finely chopped red horn pepper and stir for 2 minutes. 
  • At this point add the minced lamb and salt. Stir with a wooden spoon. Let the meat brown equally. Add red paprika powder and stir again. Now add half of the bone broth and cover the skillet with a lid. Reduce the temperature and let it cook for 10 minutes.
  • Start adding all the spices and keep stirring. Add the rest of the bone broth and cover the skillet again. Cook for another 10 minutes. 
  • Whisk the yolks and stir them in the salsa. In the end, add mustard and stir for the last time. Now sprinkle crumbled feta cheese on top. Cook for another 5 minutes without stirring.
  • Before serving, sprinkle with freshly chopped parsley leaves.

Notes

You can serve this salsa together with zoodles or some other vegetables, however, it's really nutritious and has all you need for a well-balanced Keto meal so you can enjoy it alone!
 
 

Mediterranean