Tag: Lent

Braised cabbage with lamb – Kapuska

Braised cabbage with lamb – Kapuska

Winter cabbages are so sweet and tasty, especially when braising gives the such a silky taste. Stuffed cabbage leaves may very well be my winter favorite, but we’ll leave those for another day. In this recipe we are looking a a very easy, fast, midweek,…

Whole braised cauliflower kapama

Whole braised cauliflower kapama

Kapama is a traditional way of braising in Greece, by placing a pot on top of a baking tray. I first tasted cauliflower kapama made the traditional way at my Aunt Sophia’s. This is an everyday, simple dish, usually served during the period of Lent…

Olive Bread with herbs

Olive Bread with herbs

When I first wrote about the wonderful no-knead bread dough that waits patiently in the fridge for whenever you need it, I promised you variations like this delicious olive-bread with herbs. It can be a quick snack on its own. If you have 3 minutes more you can also make a perfect sandwich or bruschetta with:

  • Feta and tomato or
  • Cheese spread and red peppers or even
  • Kefir cheese with grilled vegetables

Follow the instructions for the basic dough, which you can keep 10-14 days in the refrigerator. When you want to make some for olive bread, you take the amount you need, roll it out, add your filling and roll it back again. Fold the edges, let it rise and it’s ready to bake! It shouldn’t take you more than five minutes.

See the detailed instructions here:

Ingredients

  • No-knead dough that has fermented for at least 12 hours in the refrigerator
  • Half a cup of Kalamata or green pitted olives, sliced in half or in slices
  • 1-2 pinches of oregano

Every time you want to make bread, you first prepare a piece of parchment with a little flour on your counter. Preheat your dutch oven with the lid on at 230 C. Take the dough out of the fridge. Sprinkle with a little flour, so that the dough does not stick to your hands. Pull out a piece of dough about half a kilo. As the dough is very elastic, it helps to cut it with the kitchen scissors.

Place it on the floured surface and very quickly fold the edges towards the center, going around to form a ball. Turn the ball over with folds under it and sprinkle with flour.

The dough is very soft. So, very roll it out into an oblong shape, approximately 2-3 cm thick.

Spread the olives and oregano over the whole surface.

Roll up the dough carefully, without pressing it too hard.

Fold the edges of the roll inward and turn it over with the folds downwards.

Turn the loaf with your hands around the sides, to give it a round shape again and let it rise for 40′.

Before baking your loaf, carve a deep cross into the dough with a sharp bread knife and sprinkle with flour. Prepare the the spot where you will put down the hot dutch oven and make room for the hot lid next to it. Take the pot out of the oven using gloves. Set it down in a safe place, take off the lid and leave one glove on the lid (otherwise I tend to forget how hot it is and grab the lid with bare hands). Holding the parchment paper taut with both hands, transfer the loaf as it is into the center of the dutch oven carefully. Use GLOVES to cover it and put it back in the oven.

Bake covered for 20′ and for a further 10 minutes without the lid. If you are making a larger loaf, adjust the baking time by 5′. The maximum baking time, if you use all the dough, is 30 ‘ covered and 20 ‘ without the lid.  

How to always have nutritious pulses handy

How to always have nutritious pulses handy

When preparing beans I usually soak and sprout twice the amount needed for my recipe. Leftover pulses are stored in the freezer for immediate use in another recipe. What does “sprouting” mean? First, I wash the pulses well. Then, I soak them in plenty of…

Stewed Octopus with pasta

Stewed Octopus with pasta

I have been meeting the most wonderful people from all over the world at the Onion Athens‘ cooking workshops over the past few months. I adore sharing traditional Greek recipes just as much as learning participants favorites too. Just last week Garry and Cindy mentioned…

“Lathenia Kimolou” flatbread

“Lathenia Kimolou” flatbread

A delicious and filling meze made from almost nothing: flour, oil, onion, tomato and herbs. It seems to symbolise all the simple beauty of the Cycladic islands. A traditional flatbread made in the tiny island of Kimolos with plenty of olive oil, to which it owes its name. It is very easy, vegetarian, smells of Greek summer and is easily transported for a picnic or as a snack on the beach. Come to think of it, always tastes better outdoors, even if we’re just on the verandah, where there’s often a couple of rocket leaves growing in a little pot, to add on top.

Although I have heard it called Greek pizza, to me it seems more similar to a focaccia, so I sometimes replace the more traditional oregano with rosemary or sage. You can also add olives or capers if you prefer. Just like focaccia, our Ladenia can make a great sandwich, cut in half and filled with lovely Greek traditional cheeses or deli meats.

The recipe is available in many versions with small differences between them. I use Chef Peskia’s one that you can watch here from the master himself. The only small change is a little more vegetables.

What works for me is to make the dough the night before and let it gently rise in the fridge. This way it doesn’t not need kneading, just a good stirring to incorporate all the ingredients. This way I can bake it the next day without waiting for it to rise. Once the ingredients are well mixed, just cover the bowl with a plate and refrigerate. It lasts for days, waiting patiently. If you choose this method, you will spread out the dough in the baking tin as described below and just leave it for a total 20 ‘ to come to room temperature. It’s just enough time for you to preheat the oven and prepare the vegetables.

Ingredients

  • 450 g. bread flour
  • 300 ml warm water
  • 8 g. dry yeast
  • 1 pinch of sugar
  • Salt, pepper
  • 1 tbsp dry oregano
  • 70 g. olive oil
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 2 small onions
  • Fresh thyme

Using a large bowl, stir the yeast into the lukewarm water, then add the flour, sugar, salt and oregano immediately. Mix well and knead for 10 minutes. Grease the dough, cover and leave it for 45 ‘ to double in volume.

In the meantime, preheat the oven to 170 C. Cut the tomatoes and onions into thin wedges. Not too thin so that they don’t burn during baking. Mix in a bowl along with the salt, pepper, thyme and 2 tbsps of the measured olive oil. Spread the remaining oil around your baking pan and spread the dough out with your hands, making small indents with your fingers. Scatter the vegetables over the top and bake for 50′ to an hour.

Calliope’s Mystery Seafood

Calliope’s Mystery Seafood

It’s a great blessing to have friends who share your interests, especially when they’re willing to share their own experience. Calliope comes from small Stomio Larissas in central Greece and is fortunate to receive regular reinforcements in the form of food parcels from her village.…

“Revithokeftedes” chickpea patties

“Revithokeftedes” chickpea patties

The island of Sifnos is known for it’s “revithada” a chickpea stew slowly baked in a clay pot overnight with just the pulses, onions and a little olive oil. The resulting dish is so good, it has earned a permanent place on Sunday’s family table…

Fast Mussel Spaghetti

Fast Mussel Spaghetti

The best seafood is fresh! Agreed, but come Tuesday afternoon, counting down the minutes, the seconds until dinner time, the best seafood fast and readily available. So fresh shelled mussels in the refrigerator or in the freezer (if you have thawed them) is a delicious, nutritious and inexpensive shortcut when weekday dinners need to be ready in no time. Mussels are particularly rich in iron and vitamin B12, so very useful when fasting for Lent or for young kids where every bite counts.

The frozen mussels are pre-cooked and easy to overcook, so you will need to reduce the cooking times you will see below by half. With a little care they will remain tender. If you read the recipe through so that the steps are clear and you have your ingredients prepared, dinner is ready in 20-25′.

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsps. Olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 500 gr. tomatoes, grated
  • A few basil leaves or 1 tablespoon Basil pesto
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 500 gr. Mussels, rinsed and shelled
  • 60 ml white wine or 2 tbsp lemon juice if you are serving children
  • 400 gr. Spaghetti
  • grated lemon zest and finely chopped parsley for serving

In a saucepan saute the onion in half the oil, until translucent. Add half the garlic and 30″ later the grated tomato. Season and allow to simmer uncovered for about 15 ‘-20 ‘.

In a large saucepan of boiling salted water, add the spaghetti and boil for 2 ‘ less than the label on the packaging. Have the colander ready.

In the meantime, in a large wide frying pan, sauté the remaining oil, the remaining garlic with the mussels for 2 minutes and add the wine. Allow to evaporate while adding the basil to the tomato sauce. Stir the sauce well and pour into the pan with the mussels. Simmer for 2 ‘, then add the strained spaghetti, stir well and take off the heat. Serve immediately with the lemon zest and parsley.