Archive | Greens

Dandelion Greens / Radikia

dandelion greens with Greek olive oil and fresh lemon juice

gorgeous dandelion greens with Greek olive oil and fresh lemon juice

Horta is a catch-all term for greens and horta vrasta means simply boiled greens.  This recipe features dandelion greens (radikia in Greek) which are certainly very popular in Greek cooking as are their other green friends vleeta (amaranth), mustard greens and chicory. A dish of boiled greens drizzled with olive oil and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice is quite probably one of the most satisfying and really delightful meals you will every enjoy.

Many of us have stories of Yiayia or Papouli going into the yard (or stopping by the side of the road!) with a kitchen knife, digging delicious dandelion weeds from the ground. Packed with nutrients, wild greens have helped to sustain people through many times of scarcity and hunger and have a special place in Greek food culture. They couldn’t be easier to cook up so Continue Reading →

Marathopites / Fennel Pies

marathopites / fennel frond pies

marathopites / fennel frond pies

Fresh wild greens, aromatic fresh herbs and olive oil all wrapped in a simple dough = handheld heaven! Pites (or singular, pita) are a general word to describe hand held pies of all sorts. The variety of fillings is endless, many many of which are traditionally meat/dairy free. This particular pita, marathopita, comes from the island of Crete where wild fennel runs, well, wild!

The perfect lunch, snack or even breakfast and very child friendly – marathopites (μαραθόπιτες) use only the leaves or frilly fronds that grow on thin stalks above the fennel bulb. Here in the Northeast US its often difficult to find fennel bulbs with a beautiful bushy bunch of fronds attached as they’re usually trimmed for supermarket shelves.  They can, truth be told, get a bit unruly. Then comes July at the farmers market and fennel is at every stall, displayed in all her leafy glory. This is the time to make, eat and freeze for non-fennel seasons, marathopites! Continue Reading →


traditional, authentically vegan Greek spanakopita

Spanakopita or spinach pie is probably one of the best-known of all traditional Greek dishes and hands down one of the most delicious. Its traditionally made without cheese so, bonus, authentically vegan too!

A handful of simple ingredients – fresh dill, mint, peppery chopped scallions, gorgeous green leafy spinach and you’re good to go. Wrap it all up in flaky fillo dough and you’ve got one of the easiest and most delightful foods in all of Greek cooking. This recipe will have spanakopita on your table in under an hour. Give it a try, you’ll Continue Reading →

White Beans with Greens (Φασόλια με χόρτα)

white beans and swiss chard

white beans and swiss chard

A perfect dish for summer greens and an authentic meal enjoyed all over Greece. Swiss chard, beet greens and vleeta/amaranth all are good choices for this recipe. It’s just as delicious warm from the stove or packed in a picnic lunch and good to the last bean!

Northern white beans are my favorite in this dish with their creamy, meaty texture. Fresh dill, tomatoes, onions and garlic round out the simple ingredients and give you a tasty, traditional, nutritious meal you’ll love Continue Reading →

Hortopita (Wild Greens Pie)

hortopita / wild greens pie

hortopita / wild greens pie

Hortopita or Wild Greens Pie is traditionally made in the spring when wild greens are young and tender. In the US, we have access to a variety of greens year round so you can enjoy this hearty, nutritious meal any time.

My yiayia’s favorite combination of greens for this pita, and what I use today, include dandelion greens, mustard greens and spinach. Add scallions, dill and parsley and the aromas of a Greek hillside will fill your kitchen. The flavors balance well so you taste the perfect Continue Reading →

Wilted Beet Greens

I love to buy beets with the big, leafy greens still attached. It makes me feel as if I’ve just pulled them from the ground myself! Beet greens have a sweet and mild flavor that’s preserved when you wilt instead of boil them.

wilted beet greens

These delicate greens are delicious served hot or room temperature and the only additional flavors I use are salt, pepper and garlic. You can garnish with chopped Continue Reading →