Anchovies, marinated

anchovies

In the land of ouzo, fish and seafood nibbles are truly, very popular. Admittedly we prefer our fish fresh and baked on the grill, sprinkled with lemon and olive oil. Especially during summer when seas and shores are teeming with life, aquatic and not and we are all stewing under an unforgiving summer sun. There is nothing better than a lazy afternoon in front of the sea with salty treats washed down with a bit of ouzo. Anchovies, marinated in all their herby glory never go unnoticed. Continue reading

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Okra – another politics inspired post

okra stew

Does okra spring something to mind? Perhaps lady’s fingers?   I remember hunting for these darlings in the UK and it was not always an easy case. Most well-known for their wonderful Indian bhindi curry, I could get them during the summer in certain markets especially those in proximity with Asian neighbourhoods. In Greece, it is bamia as we call it and thanks to our proximity to Africa this wonderful vegetable got incorporated in traditional cuisine as a side, mainly paired with chicken. It is equally tasty when cold as a mezze with a bit of raki. Continue reading

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Grisis and scrambled eggs, the Greek way

scrambled eggs

So I was out having a drink on Friday night. A grilled kalamari, aubergine dip and houmous to share with a friend whilst sipping over cold raki at Psirri. It started to drizzle, summer has been unusually cool this year. Gentle and refreshing drops turned into thundering rain. We rushed to the metro, greeting each other semi-soaked and laughing on opposite platforms. We had no clue as to what had been announced. Continue reading

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Say cheese, the best of Greek cheese

Greek cheese

Did you notice I used 3 kinds of cheese in my mini cheese pies a while back? I am sure you have heard of feta and perhaps Greek gruyere, a mild yellow cheese. But this is the tip of the iceberg, Greeks are avid cheese lovers. According to 2011 statistics, the average Greek consumes 23.4 kg of cheese per year and of course one quarter of that is feta. But feta really is just the beginning. You are guaranteed to find something unique whichever part of Greece you visit – we have approximately 64 different types and we sport 21 cheeses with Protected Denomination of Origin (PDO).

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Pastrami pie, after Easter treats

pastourmadopita

Easter has come and gone and normally there is a tone of leftovers. Perfect for making kleftiko or exohiko, but for me Easter held a different sort of present this year: home-made pastrami! Dad had made some himself and of course he kept some for me. Pastrami is one of the most exotic cured meats with a long history and a very special pie to honour it, pastrami pie!

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Stuffed squid in the pot

squid and herbs

Greece is a paradise for fish and sea-food. Personally, I will be forever divided between kalamari (squid), octopus and prawns – not to mention the smaller delicacies like clams, scallops and even… sea-urchins! We love our kalamari fried, but honestly this is more of a tavern specialty, perfect to enjoy with a glass of ouzo on a sunny day. At home it’s a different story. We relish squid and make it go a long way with a stew.
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Clean Monday, Kathari Deutera, taramasalata and ouzo

octopus Kathari Deutera, or Clean Monday, marks the start of Lent prior to Greek Orthodox Easter and it could well be our national day for picnics & kite-flying. It’s also a tradition to feast on seafood like taramasalata, octopus, calamari and other delicious vegetarian and shellfish treats. Continue reading

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