1 and ½ pounds potatoes, cubed
Optional: mint, rosemary
Kalamata olives, pitted and halved
3-4 sundried tomatoes (packed in oil), chopped
Garnish: 2-3 tablespoons pine nuts
Optional: 2-4 tablespoons plain whole milk yogurt or sour cream
For the dressing:
¼ - ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
2-4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Place the potatoes in a pot of cold, salted water. Bring to a boil and cook until fork tender. About 10-15 minutes. Finely chop the scallions and herbs and set aside.
Combine the dressing ingredients in a bowl and whisk well to combine.
Place the pine nuts in a small pan and toast over medium heat until lightly golden. About 3 minutes.
Strain the potatoes and peel the skin.
While the potatoes are still warm, toss them in the dressing and mix to combine. Taste and add more salt if needed.
Mix in the herbs, olives, and sundried tomatoes.
Garnish with toasted pine nuts and serve.
Optional: To create a creamy potato salad, fold in the yogurt or sour cream and serve.
A traditional Greek dish made with lamb and greens in a refreshing lemon sauce.
2 – 2 and ½ pounds lamb
¼ cup olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
8 scallions, finely sliced
1-pound greens: Romaine lettuce, mustard greens, spinach, or dandelion greens, roughly chopped
¼ cup dill, finely chopped
2 tablespoons mint, finely chopped
For the Avgolemono sauce (egg-lemon sauce):
3 egg yolks
¼-1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
Pinch of salt
1 tablespoon cornstarch
Season the meat on both sides with salt and pepper.
Heat olive oil in a pot and brown the meat in a few batches all around. About 5-8 minutes. Do this in batches as to avoid overcrowding the pot. Overcrowding the pot will prevent the meat from browning.
Note: the meat can also be browned in the oven by placing it in a baking pan, drizzled with olive oil and seasoned with salt and pepper. Roast at 500 °F, 260 °C for about 10 minutes.
Add the sliced scallions to the pot with the meat and cook over high heat for 3-5 minutes or until the scallions soften a bit.
Cover the meat with water and bring to a boil.
Cover the pot with the lid and reduce the heat to a medium low. Cook for approximately 1 and ½ to 2 hours or until the meat is tender. Stir often and add more water if needed.
Wash, dry, and coarsely chop the greens.
Once the meat is soft, add the chopped greens to the pot, cover with lid and cook until they are wilted.
Taste and add more salt and pepper if desired.
Prepare the Avgolemono sauce by combining the egg yolks, lemon juice, and corn starch in a small bowl. Whisk until smooth.
Temper the sauce by adding about ½ cup of hot liquid from the pot and whisking to combine.
Pour the sauce into the pot and mix to distribute.
Note: Traditionally, the sauce is not stirred, instead, the pot is lifted (carefully with protective kitchen mittens) and then swirled while gently shaking so that the sauce is distributed.
Cook over medium heat 3-5 minutes. Stir in the chopped mint and dill and serve.
Approx. ½ cup (or more) Tomato & pepper sauce
¼ cup or less crumbled feta cheese
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Toasted pita bread
Heat the sauce in a small pan.
Whisk the eggs with the salt, pepper, and feta cheese.
Add the egg mixture and cook over low heat while stirring to create scrambled eggs.
Cook until the eggs are cooked through but still moist.
Toast pita bread and top with the scrambled eggs.
This can be served as a sandwich or with bread on the side.
The scrambled egg mixture can also be served over toasted bread slices as crostini.
All of the flavors of summertime in Greece are in this delicious fritter. Use the freshest tomatoes and herbs that you can find for maximum flavor.
1 and ½ pounds tomatoes, diced
1 small onion, finely chopped
3-5 scallions (green and white parts), finely sliced
½ cup finely chopped fresh herbs
2 teaspoons dried crushed oregano
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 and ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Optional: ½ pound feta cheese, crumbled
Vegetable oil, for frying
tzatziki sauce for dipping
In a large mixing bowl, combine the diced tomatoes, onions, scallions, and herbs. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and pepper and whisk to combine.
Add the flour to the tomato mixture and mix well with a spatula until everything is combined.
Mix in the crumbled feta is using.
Taste and add more salt and pepper if desired.
This mixture can sit in the refrigerator for a few hours so that all of the flavors marry. It can also be made immediately. I prefer to allow it to sit at least 1 hour for best flavor.
Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium high heat.
Carefully drop 1 tablespoon of batter at a time in the oil and fry at least 3 minutes before flipping to prevent the fritter from falling apart.
Cook until golden brown all around. 6-7 minutes.
Set the fritters on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb the excess oil.
Serve immediately with tzatziki sauce for dipping.
Makes 20-22 rolls:
1-pound phyllo pastry, thawed and at room temperature wrapped in plastic packaging
½ pound unsalted butter, melted
Ground cinnamon for garnish
For the Custard:
3 cups whole milk
½ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup semolina flour
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 whole eggs
1 egg yolk
Zest of a small orange
¼ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
For the Syrup:
2 cups granulated sugar
2 cups water
1 cup honey
Juice of orange
Preheat the oven to 350 °F, 180°C.
Begin by making the syrup. Combine the sugar, water, and orange juice in a small saucepan. Stir and bring to a boil. Cook until sugar has dissolved. Stir in the honey. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely.
To make the custard filling:
Pour the milk into a small pot and heat until scalding hot.
Combine the eggs, yolk, sugar, salt, semolina, and cornstarch in a mixing bowl. Whisk until thick and pale yellow. About 3 minutes.
Add orange zest and mix to incorporate.
Pour 1 cup of the hot milk into the egg mixture and whisk well to incorporate.
Add the mixture to the pot with the milk in it and cook over medium low heat while constantly stirring with a whisk until it thickens to the consistency of pudding. It should not become too thick. As it cools it will thicken.
Stir in the vanilla extract.
Notes on working with phyllo pastry:
Line a baking tray with parchment paper and set aside.
Take one sheet of phyllo, drizzle some melted butter over top. Fold it in half lengthwise. Place a small scoop (using a small ice cream scoop), about 1-1 and ½ tablespoons of custard at the bottom of pastry, keeping it centered.
Fold over both sides (right and left long sides) of pastry over cream.
Drizzle with some more melted butter.
Roll the pastry all the way up keeping it a bit loose to allow room for the custard to cook during baking. Place on the prepared baking tray.
Keep doing this until all of the phyllo and custard are finished.
Some custard may remain. Enjoy it sprinkled with some cinnamon. It’s delicious!
Brush the tops with the remaining melted butter.
Bake for 30-35 minutes or until golden.
Pour half of the syrup over the custard rolls. Let sit for about 1 hour to absorb the syrup.
Dust with ground cinnamon and serve.
The remaining syrup can be served alongside the custard rolls.
4-6 fresh artichokes
½ - 1/3 cup olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, grated
8 scallions, thinly sliced
2 carrots, sliced
4 small – medium potatoes, quartered
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup frozen green peas, thawed
¼ cup finely chopped fresh dill
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (or less)
1-2 lemons, sliced in half for rubbing on artichokes
1 teaspoon cornstarch (optional)
Cook the finely chopped onion with the olive oil in a pot over low heat until soft and golden. About 10-15 minutes.
In the meantime, carefully peel the artichokes.
Keep a large bowl halfway filled with ice water and 1-2 lemons cut in half inside the water.
Remove the outer leaves of the artichoke and the hairy choke. Rub it all over with lemon and place in the bowl of water. This will keep them from turning brown.
Add the grated garlic to the pot and warm through. Add scallions and cook over low heat until soft. About 5 minutes.
Add the carrot and all-purpose flour. Mix it and cook for 1-2 minutes over high heat.
Add the artichokes, potatoes and season with salt and pepper.
Pour enough water in the pot to almost cover the vegetables.
Bring to a boil then cover the pot with the lid. Reduce to a medium low heat and cook about 45 minutes or until the vegetables are fully cooked and tender.
Taste and add more salt and pepper in needed.
Add the green peas and stir to combine.
Combine the lemon juice with the cornstarch in a small bowl and mix to dissolve. Begin with a small quantity of lemon juice (1/4 cup) because sometimes lemons are very strong and somewhat bitter. You can always add more lemon juice afterwards.
Note: If you prefer your artichoke stew more on the brothy side, do not add the cornstarch. The addition of cornstarch gives it a creamy velvety texture while thickening it a little bit.
Add the lemon juice and cornstarch mixture to the pot and mix to combine.
Bring to a boil and taste once again for seasoning and add more lemon if desired.
Top with the chopped fresh dill and serve.
The stew will thicken as it sits and tastes wonderful with toasted bread. Enjoy!
Makes 2 loaves
For the starter:
1/2 cup milk, lukewarm
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
4 cups bread flour
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup lukewarm milk
2 large eggs
zest of an orange
1 tablespoon ground mahlepi
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground mastic gum (optional)
2 ounces unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
egg wash: 1 egg yolk plus 2 tablespoons water
optional fillings: dried cranberries, raisins, chopped nuts, candied fruit, ground cardamom, vanilla or almond extract
Note: This dough can be prepared in a table top mixer or kneaded by hand in a large bowl or on the countertop. Using a mixer will require less kneading time. About 10 minutes. If making the dough by hand, knead it at least 15 minutes so that the gluten forms well to achieve the desired consistency and texture.
Combine the starter ingredients together in the bowl of a tabletop mixer. Whisk and set aside for 10 minutes to activate the yeast. It is ready when a puffy cloud forms above the mixture.
In another bowl, combine the flour, sugar, orange zest, salt, mahlepi, and mastic gum together. Mix well to combine.
Once the yeast is activated, add all of the remaining ingredients to the mixer's bowl. Turn the mixer on low and knead for 8 minutes.
Add the softened butter and increase the speed to medium (4 on the Kitchen aid) and knead for 2 minutes.
Place some oil in the bottom of a large bowl and transfer the dough to the bowl. Toss around to coat and form a ball. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place until doubled in volume. About 1 and 1/2 to 2 hours.
Quick Rise Tip: My favorite place to keep the dough so that it rises quickly is in the dryer. Here is what I do:
1) I put 3-4 clean bath towels in the dryer and turn it on (high heat setting) for about 5-6 minutes.
2) I place the bowl with the dough into the dryer (on top of the warm towels) and close the door.
3) Make sure the dryer is OFF!!
4) Remove from the dryer when it has doubled in volume.
This trick usually cuts 30 minutes from the rise time.
Punch down the dough to remove the air. Cut into 2 equal portions.
Cut each portion in thirds.
Roll each portion into about 13 inch long ropes.
Form the 3 ropes into a braid and do the same with the remaining three ropes to shape 2 loaves of brioche.
Place both braided loaves onto a baking tray (18 by 13 inch) lined with parchment paper.
Cover with plastic wrap or with a clean towel.
Set aside until doubled in volume. If using the dryer trick, it takes about 45 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, 177 degrees Celsius.
Brush the tops of the brioche dough with the egg wash.
Optional: Place a hard boiled, dyed egg in the braids or top with sliced almonds.
Bake in the center rack of the oven for 30 minutes.
Remove from the oven and cool at least 30 minutes before serving.
Once baked and cooled, the bread can be frozen up to a month. Just make sure to wrap it well with plastic wrap.
4 cups bread flour
1 and 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup olive oil
1 and 1/2 cup tepid water (about 110 degrees Fahrenheit)
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
1 and 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
optional toppings: sesame seeds, herbs(fresh or dry), sliced olives
The dough for this recipe can be prepared in a table top stand mixer or in a large bowl and kneaded by hand. If kneading by hand, increase the kneading time to at least 10 minutes. The dough will be ready when it becomes smooth.
Combine the water, yeast, and sugar in a cup and set aside for 10 minutes to activate the yeast. It is active when a puffy cloud appears on the top. If this does not happen, throw away the mixture and start with different yeast. Yeast very rarely goes bad, but when it does, it cannot be used.
Combine the flour and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer.
Once the yeast is activated add it to the flour mixture along with the olive oil.
Knead on low speed for 7 minutes.
Place the dough in an oiled large bowl and cover with plastic. Set aside in a warm place to rise until doubled in size. This usually takes around 1 and 1/2 to 2 hours depending on the temperature.
Punch down the dough and cut into 2 equal portions.
Line 2 baking trays with parchment paper.
Using your fingertips or a rolling pin, roll out each piece of dough into a rectangle about the same size of the pan, about 10 inches by 14 inches.
This is a rustic bread, so shape it however you like. Rectangular shapes are very common.
Cover with a clean kitchen towel and set aside to rise about 30 minutes.
In the meantime, preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit, 218 degrees Celsius.
Place a cast iron pan on the bottom rack of the oven to warm up while the oven is preheating.
It is also a good idea to keep a pizza stone on the rack that the bread will bake on. (center rack)
If you do not have a pizza stone, a ceramic tile will do the trick. Just make sure to keep it in the oven while it is preheating. Placing a cold stone/tile in a hot oven will cause it to crack. I leave my stone inside the oven at all times.
The cast iron pan along with the pizza stone/ceramic tile will create bakery style bread.
After 30 minutes, using your fingertips press into the dough to create the characteristic look of lagana bread.
Brush the dough with water and sprinkle sesame seeds or your favorite herbs on top.
Bake the trays one at a time.
Place the tray onto the pizza stone/tile and bake for 15 minutes or until the bread is golden.
Allow the bread to rest about 8-10 minutes then serve.
For the syrup:
1 and 1/2 cups water
1 and 1/2 cups granulated sugar
peel and juice of a large orange
1 cinnamon stick
For the pudding cake:
1 pound phyllo, thawed and at room temperature
5 large eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup plain yogurt
1 and 1/4 cups freshly squeezed orange juice
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup orange marmalade
1 tablespoon baking powder
zest of 2 large oranges
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
optional: 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom seeds
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, 176 degrees Celsius.
Remove the phyllo from its packaging and keep it rolled up. Thinly slice the phyllo and spread it on a clean work surface to dry up. About 1 hour.
In the meantime, make the syrup by combining all of the syrup ingredients together in a small saucepan.
Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook about 5-6 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to completely cool.
Beat the sugar and eggs together until thick and pale yellow in color.
Whisk in the olive oil, yogurt, orange juice, salt, vanilla extract, and marmalade.
Mix in the phyllo slices, a handful at a time. Use 2 forks to mix them in evenly.
Fold in the orange zest.
Pour in a 9 inch by 13 inch baking pan.
Bake for about 1 hour. The cake will be golden when ready.
As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, poke some holes with a skewer or tooth pick and pour the syrup over it.
Allow to cool completely, about 1-2 hours, before serving.
This cake is very sweet. It tastes best with unsweetened whipped cream or with dark chocolate ganache drizzled on top. Some bittersweet chocolate curls would also taste fantastic with this cake.
Hi, I'm Dimitra and welcome to my blog! Here, I'll teach you just how much fun and easy it is to please a crowd with my versions of Greek classics. Kali Orexi as we say in Greek!