July: It’s All Greek To Me!

Everyone loves a crossover episode, when your favorite characters from one show join forces with the characters from a completely different show to reach a common goal. I teamed up with Sara from “Adventures of a Hungry Ginger” and a few other friends, and our goal was to cook up a ton of Greek food and eat it all.

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All of my favorite Greek restaurants have several things in common: large groups of people eating together, lots of courses to share between everyone, and plenty of flavor! I was in charge of making an appetizer, so I made a couple of my favorite dips.

Skordalia and Hummus with Pita Chips: Skordalia is a thick puree of potatoes, garlic, lemon juice and olive oil. Hummus can be found all over the Mediterranean and Middle East, but there are slight variations depending on local tastes. Other classic Greek dips include tzatziki, feta cheese, tahini, baba ganoush and roasted tomato spread.

  • Homemade pita chips: Cut each pita bread into 8 triangles, brush with olive oil and salt and herbs, and toast on a baking sheet at 400°F for 7-8 minutes. I used Osaka Seasoned Salt from World Spice Merchants.

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Other highlights from our Greek feast included:

  • Horiatiki: This dish has become synonymous with Greek salads because it blends fresh vegetables, olives and creamy feta cheese. 
  • Spanakopita: This savory pastry, which translates into “spinach pie,” is made with spinach, feta, onion, eggs and phyllo dough.
  • Fasolakia Fresca: A green bean casserole made with onions and tomatoes.
  • Salmon Plaki: The last Copper River salmon of the season, baked with tomatoes, onion, celery, raisins and spices.
  • Kotopeta Me Aspri Saltsa: This recipe for chicken wrapped in phyllo dough and béchamel sauce was taken directly from “Greek Cooking in an American Kitchen,” compiled by the Cookbook Committee of St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church in Seattle. There isn’t an exact Greek translation for béchamel, so the catch-all term for sauce – saltsa – is used instead.
  • Keftethes: Baked meatballs made with ground lamb and spices; lamb is a often found in Greek cooking, especially around Easter.
  • Baklava: This dessert is made from several dozen sheets of delicate phyllo dough, layered with melted butter, chopped nuts and a sweet syrup poured over the top.
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Individually-wrapped spanakopita parcels

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