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Chickpeas and Rice / Pεβίθια και Pύζι

traditional Greek chickpeas and rice

Creamy chickpeas, garlicky light tomato sauce and a pinch of smoky sweet cinnamon make this simple, traditional dish divine. A handful of ingredients, 35 min to prep/cook and you have a hearty, healthy, incredibly flavorful meal on the table. This dish is also perfect to take for lunch as its just as yummy at room temperature. A true one-pot-wonder, chickpeas and rice will become Continue Reading →

Carrot Keftedes

carrot keftedes with lahanosalata/cabbage salad

carrot keftedes with lahanosalata/cabbage salad

Keftedes are probably one of my favorite kinds of food – crispy outside, light oh-so-flavorful inside small fried (or baked) fritters of yumminess.  You can make them with all sorts of ingredients from meat to just about any vegetable.  I happen to love carrot keftedes best!

Roasting the carrots in this recipe really intensifies their flavor and sweetness and though many vegetable keftedes are made with eggs or cheese, they’re not missed in this traditional vegan (or Lenten) version. And carrot keftedes are a great way to use up stored winter carrots as well as older, less pretty carrots too. Continue Reading →

Cabbage Soup / λαχανόσουπα

cabbage soup / λαχανόσουπα

cabbage soup / λαχανόσουπα

This is one of the most satisfying vegetable soups you will ever have.  Cabbage soup is a traditional winter dish in Greece, though I  enjoy it year round! The cabbage is sweet, the dill and thyme so flavorful, and the chopped zucchini, carrots and potatoes make it a complete meal in a bowl.

The trick is to first sauté all the vegetables, including the cabbage, before adding the water to your soup.  This gives you a much more intensely flavored, layered, robust finished dish. This is a one-pot-wonder and so simple to prepare you’ll be Continue Reading →

Braised Leeks

braised leeks

braised leeks

Leeks are Greek to me!  They’re everywhere in Greece and in Greek cooking.  Braised leeks are my favorite way to make them because its one of the few recipes where the leeks are allowed to stand alone and really shine.

Just a few ingredients including white wine, lemon and thyme and you have tender, sweet, beautiful braised leeks on your plate in less than 20 minutes from start to finish. Quick, easy, lovely Continue Reading →

Giant Bean Salad

lima saladThis light, lemony, peppery, creamy bean salad is a joy to eat and so quick and simple to prepare.  For a pretty and delicious first course or perfect lunch, fill a large tomato with giant bean salad or just enjoy with a piece of good, crusty bread. Giant bean salad is one of my very favorite meals and I know you’ll enjoy it as much as I do!
Ground anise, mustard seeds and chopped scallions are a sensational flavor combination here.  With a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to brighten things up and a good olive oil to bring everything together – you just Continue Reading →

Vegetable Stew

traditional Greek vegetable stew

This hearty, warming vegetable stew is the perfect way to end a cool autumn day.  Traditionally, Greek vegetable stew is made with peas but I’ve had it with green beans and its just as tasty.  A big piece of crusty bread, a fork and a spoon for the juices and you’ll be in heaven!

Carrots, peas and potatoes swim in a garlicky good light tomato sauce flavored with fresh dill. Fresh dill is a key ingredient here.  If you don’t have any around, put this dish off for another day. Vegetable stew is a great way to use winter vegetables and cooks up in Continue Reading →

Chickpea Fritters (Revithokeftedes)

revithokeftedes or chickpea fritters

revithokeftedes or chickpea fritters

So satisfying, crispy, ‘meaty’ and aromatic with so many ways to enjoy these traditional chickpea fritters you’ll find them well worth the bit of extra effort. Revithokeftedes are perfect with a side of horiatiko chopped salad or wrapped up in pita bread with tahini lemon sauce and sliced tomatoes – chickpea fritters are a winner every time!

This scrumptious recipe takes about 4 hours total to make and because its often difficult to carve out that much time in the kitchen, I often make it in stages.  The most labor intensive (and my favorite!) part is getting the skins off the chickpea and I’ll share my speedy technique so you can Continue Reading →

Rice with Fithe and Vegetables (Ρύζι με φιδέ και λαχανικά)

'fancy' rice

‘fancy’ rice

A simple and delicious, traditional way to dress up rice. When we were little we called it “fancy rice” because the broken bits of tiny thin noodles and bits of beautiful orange carrots just seemed to make it special. It’s a meal in itself or a lovely side dish and perfect served hot from the stove or room temp for lunch.

This recipe uses authentic fithe noodles. These are very ,very thin pasta noodles dried in the shape of small nests. You can find authentic fithe noodles at Greek and Middle Eastern markets and a good Greek brand is Misko. Goya also makes a good option (fideos/fide noodles) that you can often find in larger grocery stores in the International foods aisle. If you can’t find the real thing, try substituting angel hair  or vermicelli 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 →

Roasted Brussel Sprouts

roasted brussel sprouts

roasted brussel sprouts

Yay for brussel sprouts! If you’re not a fan of them already, this recipe is sure to get you on board with brussels. Very simply, roasting is the secret to loving this vegetable.

These crispy outside, meaty inside, crunchy, salty mouthfuls of Greek vegan goodness will make you forget all about the sad, over boiled, soggy, sulphury brussel sprouts of the past. So quick and easy to make, you’ll Continue Reading →

Okra (μπάμιες)

okra in light tomato

okra in light tomato

Oh how I love okra! Tender, sweet with a big piece of crusty bread to sop up the garlicky good sauce and you’ve got yourself a Greek vegan good meal.

This recipe gently braises the okra. It’s a simple, no fuss method that allows the okra to stew slowly until they’re melt in your mouth perfect. Late spring and early summer is okra season here and I always keep my eye out for them to first appear at my favorite farmers market. They do pop up Continue Reading →

Savory Onion Pancakes / Kremidotiganites

savory onion tiganites

savory onion tiganites

Savory pancakes are a staple in Greek cooking. A light batter with assorted vegetable fillings make these delicious, traditional tiganites (fritters) a satisfying meal or a delicious, nutritious quick snack.

Sweet white onions and a bit of fresh mint are the perfect filling for these tiganites and I’ll let you in on a secret that will really pump up the flavors- sweat your onions before adding them to the batter.  Sweating, not frying or sautéing, the onions makes them soft and sweet. The savory tastes Continue Reading →

Manestra

manestra new coverManestra is a very traditional hearty, rich soup enjoyed all over Greece.  It’s the perfect meal on a cold winter day.  Manestra warms you with the flavors of summer sun tomatoes and fills you with buttery plump orzo. Just to warn you, it’s completely addictive so be sure to use your bottomless bowls for this dish.

This one-pot-wonder is so simple to make, you’ll be so surprised by how flavorful and satisfying it is.  With only 5 ingredients, the quality of your tomatoes, Greek oregano and Continue Reading →

Mushroom Pita

golden brown mushroom pita

golden brown mushroom pita

Our Yiayia would always tell us about foraging for wild mushrooms as she cooked up our favorite mushroom pitas. She said, Greece is a land of mountains and mushrooms love mountains. As she talked and cooked, the kitchen would fill with the aromas of thyme and rosemary and carry our imaginations right up Yiayia’s mountainside with her.

This is such a hearty, satisfying, meal. The mushrooms just soak up the recipe’s flavors like tiny sponges. Simply pair it with a glass of light white wine and

Continue Reading →

Lahanorizo (Cabbage and Rice)

lahanorizo, the unstuffed stuffed cabbage

lahanorizo, the unstuffed stuffed cabbage

Think of this dish as unstuffed stuffed cabbage.  So simple to make, lahanorizo (Λαχανόρυζο) is a traditional recipe of sweet, tender cabbage, fresh dill and thyme. It’s a quick, delicious meal right  from the stove and leftovers are just as good a day or two later.

Served warm, lahanorizo is hearty and perfect for a winter’s night.  A dish at room temperature (or even right from the fridge!) and sprinkled with a bit of fresh lemon juice is just the thing for a hot summer afternoon.   Tasty, healthy, Continue Reading →

Barley Salad

Barley Salad

Light, lemony and so satisfying with layers of textures and flavors, this will be your favorite way to enjoy barley!

I’ve always loved this dish but never as much as when I found it on the chalkboard menu outside a little restaurant in the town of Edipsos on the island of Evvia. A heaping scoop of barley salad sitting in a big piece of sweet red watermelon – brilliant! The combination of tastes is just so perfect together. Ever since, when Continue Reading →

Eggplant Tiganites (Fried Eggplant)

eggplnt pltes 1This recipe is one of the earliest memories I have of cooking. Sprinkling salt on the eggplant slices and watching them ‘sweat’ out their bitterness fascinated me to no end. It was a simple but important job and one I took very seriously – isn’t it funny the things you remember? Eggplant tiganites are a staple menu item and often served as appetizers, or meze, in Greece. My favorite is to layer them between two pieces of bread for lunch. They’re wonderful anytime really!

The secret to this recipe – the simple batter coating that turns to a delicious golden crisp and protects the tender eggplant from becoming greasy. The result is melt-in-your mouth amazing. Probably not something often said about the unassuming Continue Reading →

Glazed Roasted Beets with Rice

My Yiayia Mary loved beets. Her grandchildren did not. So she always made us beets lightly glazed with honey and garlic. For years I thought that this was a variation of her own instead of a village recipe as Yiayia told us. To my complete surprise one summer in Greece, I found this dish on the menu of a small beach side cafe in Kalamata!

glazed beets with rice pilaf

The glaze is light and not sticky sweet. Equal parts honey and orange juice, crushed garlic cloves add just the right bridge between the earthy beets and sweet syrup. By allowing the roasted beets to simmer in the glaze, the flavors come Continue Reading →

Potatoes and Peas (πατάτες με aρακάς )

potatoes and peas

potatoes and peas

A traditional favorite year round, Greek potatoes and peas is a satisfying, flavorful dish equally delicious served hot on a winter evening and at room temperature on a summer afternoon.

I like to use red potatoes because they cook quickly and evenly. I also peel the potatoes in this recipe. The peels, though nutritious, take away from the overall meal for my taste but the choice is yours! Either way, you will  Continue Reading →

Spanakorizo (Spinach and Rice)

spanakorizo / spinach and rice

Such a healthy, hearty, tasty dish – this meal can be on your table in less than 40 minutes. Spanakorizo (Σπανακόριζο) is traditionally served as both a main and side dish. Pair it with a wedge of lemon and a piece of bread, this dish is delicious right off the stove or served at room temperature.

Guaranteed to become one of your go-to Greek vegan and Meatless Monday recipes, spanakorizo is another great option for take-to-work/school lunch.  I use fresh spinach probably 90% of the time but in a pinch, Continue Reading →

Orzo with Zucchini – Κριθαρακι με Κολοκυθακια

traditional orzo and zucchini

This is one of my favorite take for lunch meals. It’s every bit as delicious the next day and served at room temperature if you don’t have the opportunity to heat it up. You can use yellow squash or zucchini, I like a combination of both, with a fresh squeeze of lemon.

Three delicious flavors of Greece are featured in this recipe: lemon, oregano and garlic. Combine these with the squash, Continue Reading →

Lentil Soup (Φακές )

one beautiful bowl of beans

A folk saying goes “Fasolatha pou trefi tin Ellada”, loosely translated “The whole of Greece is brought up on bean soup”. One taste of this amazing lentil soup recipe you’ll know why!

A traditional and delicious favorite, lentil soup or Φακές is simple to make and quick to assemble. This recipe gives you the option to rough chop your vegetables and herbs, bringing your prep time down to around 15 minutes with the soup itself taking about 30-40 minutes to cook. Your cooking time will depend on Continue Reading →

Skordalia with Roasted Garlic

Skordalia with Roasted Peppers and Olives

How delicious does this look? Skordalia is found in almost every Greek household, made with just a few common ingredients and so good. It’s such a versatile dish you’ll find yourself spreading it on sandwiches, veggies or just tucking into a big bowlful with crusty bread.

Many years ago, because skordalia is traditionally made with raw garlic (recipe for traditional version here), my father had to make some adjustments to this dish before our young and Americanized palates would tolerate it. By simply substituting roasted garlic for raw, he retained much of the healthy goodness and original ingredients but with a much more subtle garlic flavor. Continue Reading →

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