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Quick Kritsinia (Sesame Bread Sticks)

kritsinia sesame bread sticks

You’ll find these crunchy sesame bread sticks wherever you go in Greece. With dozens of varieties to suit every taste, some are sweet, some savory and made with everything from honey and cinnamon to zucchini. Kritsinia are delicious with coffee for breakfast or snack and are a perfect side to any lunch or dinner.

This recipe makes about 2 1/2 dozen and uses store made bread dough. Sea salt, olive oil and sesame seeds dress up the basic dough and give you a positively addictive Continue Reading →

Roasted Fava Beans

Favas are the un-bean bean. Roasted in a hot oven or on the grill, fava beans taste like – tiny little baked potatoes! Kid you not, the creamy texture and taste of a roasted fava bean will fool you every time. I’ve grown up eating fava beans in soups and spreads but never had them roasted until I tried them in Greece one summer.

whole roasted fava beans

In the summertime, you’ll find outdoor grills selling corn on the cob everywhere in Greece. One afternoon I noticed a bunch of long green pods on the grill. I asked about them and was told they were favas. The pods were slippery with olive oil and covered in salt which I found odd as I wasn’t going to eat the shell. As I shucked a few pods and popped the beans into my mouth, it made sense. Continue Reading →

Squash Pitas

perfect golden color

squash pita

I couldn’t wait to find this pie in my lunchbox!  In Greece, pitas or pies can come in all shapes and sizes and can be filled with so many tasty things.  This recipe calls for orange squash and rice – a delicious, nutritious way to eat Greek vegan on the go.

These are made with a batter dough and can be baked in muffin pans for single serving portions or Continue Reading →

Toasted Chickpeas (Stragalia/Στραγάλια)

stragalia / traditional toasted chickpeas

Stragalia were one of my favorite snacks growing up and a particular favorite of my great grandmother Stella. All toasted and crunchy, salty and savory with sweet golden raisins and boukovo chili flakes – I still eat these traditional toasted chickpeas by the handful!

Stragalia (στραγάλια)  are a delicious, very healthy, totally addictive snack that are so simple to make and a fantastic on-the-go option for work or school too!  With coriander and fennel seeds, fresh ground black pepper, salt and garlic, this recipe is the perfect combination of traditional Greek spices. The secret to getting crunchy, nutty good bites every time? A very hot Continue Reading →

Pasteli / Sesame Candy

traditional sesame pasteli

Pasteli or sesame candy is the Greek version of a power bar. Incredibly good and incredibly good for you, these chewy, crunchy bites are the perfect treat. Pasteli are delicious on their own and are especially nice with a cup of Greek coffee or even chamomile tea.

In addition to the traditional recipe below, I’ve also added a honey-free version in deference to those who do not eat honey or may be allergic. I think you’ll find that, whichever option you choose, you will fall in love with pasteli!

And if you’re adventurous, you can try a number of different variations of nut and seed combinations and make this healthy snack uniquely your own.  Just keep the amounts of dry ingredients the 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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