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FOOD, In

You can make…Greek souvlaki, tzatziki and Greek salad!

After my post on Greek stifado I received some very encouraging comments on how much people liked greek food and one of them on my twitter account (which you can follow here) evolved like this:

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So here it is dear @thehoodedtowel, as promised. The recipe is plenty for 4 hungry, for greek food, individuals.

For the pitta souvlaki you will need:

+900gr thick cut pork shoulder steak, chopped in squares (you can use chicken breast also or just veggies to satisfy all appetites)

+Salt, pepper, dried oregano

+1 Tablespoon french mustard

+250ml of white wine

+Some olive oil

+Juice of 1 squeezed lemon

+French fries

+Pita breads or white flour wraps, heated a bit in a warm oven (there are recipes to bake your own but I do not usually bother with that ;-) )

+Tomato ketchup or salsa (optional)

So first I season the pork with salt and pepper and then marinate it in the white wine for at least 1hour (put it in the fridge please!).

I then make it into lovely skewered souvlaki and stick it under a hot grill until lovely and brown!

While they cook I make a marinade using olive oil, dried oregano, mustard and a bit of salt and pepper. I put this in a dish that can take the full length of my skewers and I mix it well so all ingredients are combined.

When my skewers are ready, I put them immediately in my marinade to rest. I turn them often so all of the meat gets the lovely juices.

For the tzatziki:

500gr Greek strained yogurt (I like Total 0%)

1 cucumber grated, skin peeled away

3 garlic cloves, finely chopped or preferably crushed

1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar

A bunch of dill, finely chopped

Half a bunch of mint, finely chopped

A bit of salt and pepper

I prepare the cucumber.

And then I crush the garlic in a deep bowl.

I add the yogurt.

And the cucumber (make sure you strain the extra water).

Then I add the dill, mint, salt, pepper, and red wine vinegar.

I mix well with a spoon until it looks like this:

For the Greek salad:

1 green pepper sliced

6 tomatoes chopped in 8 pieces (I know I can be very specific!)

1 cucumber, cut in round slices

1 piece of Greek feta cheese (and not white salad cheese!)

Kalamata olives

4 tablespoons of olive oil

Salt and dried oregano

I chop and slice and cut everything to nice different shapes.

I add dried oregano (now my secret is that I use proper greek oregano which my granny has picked from the mountain of Corfu, so if you have any Greek friends tell them next time to bring you some as it makes a massive difference).

Then I add olive oil and a drop of red wine vinegar.

Last is the feta and olives. I have used green olives for this salad but if you want to go totally traditional then you have to go with the excellent Kalamata olives.

How to make your pitta-souvlaki:

This is completely my style and I follow this order because I cannot find any proper greek pitta bread in Glasgow (if you know someone who brings original ones from Greece please let me know).

I put a tablespoon of tzatziki on my wrap and then add the souvlaki meat.

Then add some french fries, some tomatoes, and some ketchup.

I close it as well as I can…with various degrees of success.

For the next stage it is essential to remember that it is important to make a mess!

Colin loves to accompany it with a bottle of beer (the Greek way). I have always loved to have my pitas with Fanta Lemon (childhood memories).

FOOD, In

You can make…Greek stifado!

 This is one of my favourite Greek dishes and this recipe works every time. So if you and your friends like Greek cuisine, I promise this is going to wow you all.

The ingredients will make 4 good portions. You will need:
4 chicken legs, skin and bone on
Salt and pepper
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 onion chopped and 16 shallots, peeled
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon ground cloves
2 teaspoons ground allspice
1 cup of white wine
1 teaspoon tomatoe paste
1 tin of chopped tomatoes or 400g of fresh peeled tomatoes, blended
1 packet of spaghetti pasta
Pecorino cheese, grated to serve

Ready, steady, go…

Salt and pepper the chicken and brown it in a casserole with the olive oil. When ready remove from pan in a plate and let it rest aside.

Add the onion, shallots and the sugar in the casserole and cook until lovely and golden. Add the cloves and allspice and stir well for one minute.

Add the white wine and scrape the bottom of your casserole well to release all the flavours.

Add the tomatoe paste and chopped tomatoes and shimmer for 2 more minutes.

Return your chicken in the sauce and make sure it is covered in sauce. You can add half a cup of water if necessary. Let it simmer for 10-15min.
At this time boil your pasta in a separate pot. When ready drain well and return to the pot. Take 6-7 tablespoons from your lovely sauce and add it to the pasta. Mix your pasta well to allow the sauce to cover them.
Serve on your plates adding extra sauce, shallots, chicken and finish with pecorino cheese.


I would recommend a nice white wine, such as a Chardonnay (Villa Maria is always a favourite), to accompany your dish.

As for music…no I would not recommend the greek syrtaki! But I do like this girl a lot so you can see if you do too :-)

Do not forget to let me know how it all went :-) Enjoy!

Which is your favourite Greek dish?

In

Happy 2014!

2013

Happy New Year my friends!

I had such a blast but I am so excited too for the new year that has just arrived. I am so lucky to have the best person in the world for my husband, a cute little girl and a group of family and friends that offer me something priceless…happiness and moments of utter content. Thank you all for your love and support.

2014 here we come…Woohoo!

In

3 days of Christmas in Glasgow…

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Merry Christmas to all! I am sure you have all been busy, seeing your loved ones and spending family time together. We have gathered around the fire (remember my mum is here for Christmas?), and allowed Scarlett to open her gifts: a magic tree beanbag from John Lewis, a pink ukulele, a Lego Little Mermaid, two goldfish (you know this already) and lots of kisses and cuddles…Mummy got a beautiful silver necklace from Nancy Smillie (photos to follow I promise!) from hubbie, a lovely leather bracelet from mummy, and lots of kisses and cuddles from Scarlett <3!

The previous night we thought we should dine light…Hot smoked salmon with warm potatoe salad, dill mayonnaise and herb leafy salad! We washed it down with a bottle of Chablis…ahhh bliss!
IMG_0068 IMG_0069 Christmas day finally arrived…And Scarlett started unpacking…It took her a while to get through the collection ;-)
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The goose was ready at around 4pm and Christmas dinner was served at 4.30pm. Not all alone of course, it came with its friends…lovely oven roasted potatoes, brussel sprouts with pancetta and chestnuts, sweet cooked red cabbage, and prunes soaked in Armagnac! For dessert we had Christmas pudding served with Christmas pudding Ice-cream from Nardini’s on Byres Road. Now guys, please pay some attention here! This is by far the BEST, most delightful and uniquely flavoured ice-cream I have ever had. I cannot recommend this shop enough! The coffee is lovely too!IMG_0079 IMG_0081 IMG_0082 IMG_0083 IMG_0084 IMG_0085 Boxing day was a lovely sunny day. So we went with Colin and Scarlett to Tinderbox (it was the only coffee shop open on Byres Road at 11am!). Scarlett chose a green cupcake…Colin chose a carrot cake…I can never resist a portuguese custard tart and Chai! Chai is so christmasy I believe!IMG_0088 IMG_0089 IMG_0090 IMG_0091 IMG_0093 We took some selfies also! (I heard that this word was the accolade of Word of the Year by Oxford Dictionaries…so who am I to resist?) ;-PIMG_0094 IMG_0095

Merry Christmas everyone!

And as we say in Greek “Kai tou chronou” (Again next year)!

In

Woody Allen…

I decided today to tell you about the book I am currently reading. It is called “Complete Prose” by Woody Allen and it is so funny I cannot stop laughing out loud every couple of lines. I have read many books (and when I say many I mean MANY) but I cannot recall any book that has had me laughing so much so often. I love Woody Allen films but I did not know that there was a book out also. The humour in the book is kind of wicked (as Woody Allen humour often is)! I still have not watched his new film called “Midnight in Paris” and cannot wait. I will try to go on a movie date next week with my Colin.

 

 

 

 

 

Have you seen the new film? What did you think? Have you read the book? Are you a Woody Allen fan like me?

In

Creme caramel….mmmmhhh!

I am trying to perfect my creme caramel. I have tried 5 different recipes and it is not easy at all I have to say. Sometimes the eggs are too many, some others are not enough and the thing never sets, the other time the oven temperature was not right. I am absolutely determined though. I will get this right. I also have a recipe Giagia (my greek grandma) gave me and it has ouzo in the caramel! I got a present for my forthcoming wedding, there were 4 ramekins in the shape of heart, so it got me going again that I must try to do this right. This time I tried the recipe from Jamie Oliver’s new cookbook “Jamie does….Spain, Morocco, Sweden, Greece, Italy and France”. It is cooking just as I am posting this. Fingers crossed!!!