"Gamopilafo", which means “rice of the wedding”, describes a traditional Cretan dish offered as the primary dish of the wedding feast.
Cretan goats, or Cretan lambs, or Cretan chicken and rice are the main and essential ingredients of Gamopilafo.
Gamopilafo is full of flavor and taste and aroma of the traditional home-made butter, Cretan herbs, Crete at last.
The perfect Gamopilafo is made in large cauldrons with a large amount of meat and rice, by men who specialize in pilafi.
There are people who have it as a profession here in Crete, and some of them are famous and sought after.
In Cretan weddings, the quality and taste of the Gamopilafo play an important role in the satisfaction of guests.
Though it is usually associated with Crete, it is popular throughout the country and is still mainly reserved for special occasions and various festivities.
Gamopilafo is usually made by a mature lamb that when boiled it will give you a fatty broth. Some also add a bit of chicken with the lamb so that it gives you more flavor.
The procedure is quite easy. You boil the meat with some salt till the meat is tender.
Once the meat is boiled, you pass the liquid through a mesh, to make sure your broth is clear of bones etc. Put the meat aside to eat later.
Once you have done this you measure your broth with the same cup you would measure your rice.
Wash your rice to make sure there isn't anything foreign inside.
For every cup of rice, you will need three cups of broth. In a large pot add both the broth and rice and boil on medium fire.
Wash and cut a lemon in two and add to the pot.
Make sure to stir the rice and stay close to it as it could stick. Taste for salt and add pepper. Once it starts to get thick remove the lemon.
As soon as you see it thickening (with some juice) remove and serve right away.
We usually add more pepper and lemon.
Don't forget to serve the meat as well on the top of rice.