Agginarotyropita–Artichoke Cheese Pie

In Greek, the word “Pita” does not simply stand for the flatbreads most people are familiar with in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines. Instead, “Pita” is the Greek word for pie, a significant component of the classic Greek diet. In the old days, a Greek housewife was quite frankly “judged” on her ability to roll out her own phyllo and as such her most prized kitchen tools included only a long, thin wooden rod used as a rolling pin and a large round wooden surface on which to stretch the phyllo. Back then, pites (plural for pita)

Psites Patates kai Piperies — Roasted Potatoes and Peppers

Simplicity is best more often than not, especially when it comes to cooking. Even though I am extremely detail-oriented and a stickler for getting things just right, I’m not a big fan of elaborate dishes, eccentrically plated with extreme care — dinner parties at this household are pretty much always served “family-style,” just like our everyday meals. These potatoes and peppers are characteristic of the type of dish I might serve. It couldn’t be a simpler dish, but believe me there is no loss of flavor. I use some white potatoes, fairly

Ouzo Mezedes, Part I

For my Foodbuzz 24, 24, 24: Greek Ouzo Tasting … in New York, I wanted to “abide” by the traditional way of serving ouzo: alongside an array of mezedes to help ease down the strong aperitif. Htapodokeftedes (octopus croquettes) are a delicacy on the island of Kalymnos, from which my family hails. I’ve enjoyed htapodokeftedes on the island a number of times but never anywhere else. This was my first time making them at home, but definitely not my last … these flavorful mezedes were much easier than they seem and a hit with our guests. I also

Pita me Spanaki kai Anitho–Spinach and Dill Pie

I’m in the midst of a big baking project–let’s just say it’s a multi-tiered cake that will feed 100–but I wanted to quickly share this recipe with you before I completely drown in gum paste, fondant icing and buttercream frosting. In the mood to bake a pita (savory pie) the other day, I put together this lighter version of spanakopita or spinach pie. Usually, a spanakopita includes lots of Feta (or any somewhat soft cheese similar to it) but as I was fresh out of Feta and I in no way intended to leave the house again to shop for any, I

Nistisima Papoutsakia/Eggplants Stuffed with Tomato, Onion and Walnuts

The term papoutsakia is literally translated to “little shoes” and as these small eggplants stuffed with tomato, onion and walnuts truly do resemble little shoes (maybe even little ballet slippers) they are aptly named as such. There are numerous versions of papoutsakia to be had in Greece including ones stuffed with ground meat and topped with bechamel, others stuffed with ground meat and topped simply with cheese and others still filled simply with tomatoes and onion or really any variety of sauteed vegetables. Today, I whipped up this Lenten version of

Kathara Deutera (Clean Monday)

Kathara Deutera (Clean Monday) symbolizes the start of Lent for Orthodox Christians and is an important day in the Greek Orthodox faith. A day that prompts us all to eat simple, very traditional Greek fare, Kathara Deutera is meant to cleanse the body and spirit in preparation for Easter and is one of the many celebrations leading up to this important holiday that help us carry on precious customs and traditions passed down from generation to generation of Greeks found all around the world. On this day, my family–as most Greek families–begins the Great

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