Hilopites (Greek pasta) with keftedakia recipe

By Yiayia, Daniel & Luke Mancuso

For our 3rd birthday celebrations we teamed up with Yiayia, Luke and Daniel to recreate one of their favourite recipes from the "Yiayia Next Door Cookbook"A hearty meal that we love making all year around!

Yiayia was fed up with cooking rice all the time, so one day she spiced things up by adding hilopites – Greek pasta made with goat's milk – to this meatball dish instead. Everyone loved it. With one simple change, Yiayia had created a delicious new meal to share with family and friends.


  • 3 tablespoons Greek olive oil
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 350 g mince (half beef topside, half pork fillet, minced twice; ask your butcher to do this for you)
  • 3 teaspoons sea salt with smoked paprika (for that extra smokey flavour)
  • 1 egg
  • handful of chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 3 tablespoons dried breadcrumbs
  • 1 heaped teaspoon ground paprika
  • 1 litre boiling water
  • 250g hilopites pasta (Greek egg pasta with goat's milk)


    Preheat the oven to 210°C (190°C fan-forced).
    Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium heat, add two-thirds of the onion and cook for 5 minutes or until soft and translucent. Increase the heat to medium–high, add half the mince and 1 teaspoon of the salt and cook, breaking up any lumps with the back of a wooden spoon, for 5 minutes or until well browned. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside.
    Place the remaining mince and onion, the egg, parsley, breadcrumbs and 1 teaspoon of the remaining salt in a bowl and mix with your hands until well combined. Divide and shape the mixture into 12 small meatballs.
    Spread the cooked mince mixture over the base of a 36 cm × 30 cm roasting tin or flameproof baking dish and place over medium heat. Sprinkle over the paprika and remaining salt, then pour in the boiling water. Sprinkle in the hilopites and stir well, then top with the meatballs. Carefully transfer the tin or dish to the oven and cook for 15 minutes. Give the mixture a stir, then cook for a further 5–10 minutes or until the hilopites and meatballs are cooked through.
    Divide among plates and serve.

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