Showing posts with label Meze. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Meze. Show all posts

Greek Mezé and Entertaining Made Easy with Gaea

Beautiful Greek products from Gaea make it easy to create lovely Greek mezé - we're talking effortless entertaining and perfect summer eating.  We love this kind of food, you can take your time eating, drinking and talking about your day together or of course with friends and family.



Having received some goodies from Gaea; Greek Olive Oil, Garlic Stuffed Olives, Flame Roasted Red Peppers, Sweet Pepper and Goats Cheese Tapenade and Green Olive Tapenade. I was instantly transported to Greece - Oh we love that place, but sadly we haven't been there for a few years now the last time we went it was to the Greek island of Thassos. 

Anyway, it was off to the kitchen to make some Chicken Skewers which were nothing fancy - peppers, onions and chicken which had marinated in the Greek Olive Oil with a good pinch of dried Oregano and just before cooking I added sea salt and lemon.  
I also pan-fried some leftover cooked potatoes in a mixture of lemon and oregano too.

Lovely fat olives stuffed with garlic along with some cubed feta.  The Gaea flame roasted peppers are another easy one as you just use straight from the jar.  We loved the sweet pepper and goats cheese tapenade which was delicious spread onto some Mediterranean bread.  
Top left of the picture you can see the popular Greek dip Htipiti which is so, so good, you can find out how to make it in a previous post of mine here.

Disclaimer:  Many thanks to Gaea for the lovely products.  I wasn't required to write a post but chose to do so since I really like these products. 

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Bouyiourdi - Baked Feta, Peppers, Onions and Tomatoes

If you've never been to Greece you have to try to go one day, although I do realise it is too far away for some people to travel. We are lucky here in the UK that Greece is only between 3 and a half and a 4 hour plane journey away.
I love the place, especially the Greek islands. The food is just so good too. Whenever I've been I've always love meze - lots of small dishes of pure yumminess!
Below is Aliki beach on the island of Thassos.
When I come home I'm always on a mission to 'try' to copy the food we've had! Sometimes I'm useless at it - remember last year my failed attempt at cheese saganaki - but hey ho I got it right in the end! Other times I've amazingly got it right first time.
I had no recipe for this but it tastes the same as I remember so that's something!
Now, unfortunately my only clay dishes are red - and as this dish contains red peppers and tomatoes - it's a bit of a problem to photograph it so you can see it properly.
*Note to self - Janice buy some different coloured clay dishes!

If you don't have clay dishes you can make a parcel out of kitchen foil.

Preheat your oven to 180C /350F/Gas4

You will need to make 2 dishes:

olive oil
2 sweet pointed peppers
1 red onion - sliced very thinly
2 tomatoes, skin removed and sliced thinly (score them then soak in boiling water and the skin is easy to peel)
1 block of feta cheese 350g - sliced in half through the middle and then cut in half
3 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped finely
dried Greek oregano and salt and pepper to season
How to do it:
Cut two sweet pointed peppers in half length ways and remove the seeds. Rub the halves then with a little olive oil and put them on a roasting tray.
Bake in the oven for about 20 to 25 minutes until they start to blacken nicely.
You can remove the peppers and finish them off with a cooks blowtorch to get them really nice and black like I did.


Remove the skin from the peppers and discard. Don't fuss if there are a few black bits left on, they taste good but you don't want to leave too much on. Cut each pepper half in half so you now have 8 bits.
I made two small dishes but if you only want one bigger dish just put the whole lot in one dish instead of dividing it.
Drizzle a little olive oil in the bottom of each dish and wipe round with kitchen paper.

Place half the sliced tomato on the bottom and season with a teeny bit of salt and some pepper. Add some onion and garlic.

Now add two slices of roasted pepper and sprinkle with a teeny bit of oregano, Keep going in layers, adding some of the feta then more tomato and garlic oregano and peppers.
Drizzle the top with olive oil and bake in the oven for about 25 minutes.
If you like cheese you are going to love this - just dip bread into and enjoy.
Oh and don't forget the glass of red wine!
10

Our Greek Evening!

Last night we had two friends coming round for dinner, so I decided to have a Greek evening!

I had a go at making stuffed vine leaves as part of the Meze. There was a recipe on the back of the plastic pack the vines leaves came in - but me being me I washed the empty packet - I'm cooking remember and that packet has been in how many peoples hands....yuk!
So, the result was the recipe washed off the packet! 

Oh dear! Good job I'd had a quick read first. Anyway, it was something like this:
Soak some long grain rice in boiling water for 5 minutes, rinse with cold water and drain.
Put the rice into a bowl and add chopped tomato, chopped onion, crushed dried mint, all spice, and ground cinnamon. Then add salt and pepper.
Then line a saucepan with some left over leaves (I think I had about 30 left) but I didn't want to make loads in case they turned out horrid, in any case they were only for a taster.

Where was I - lining the bottom of a saucepan with some leaves.....
Then put a small amount of the rice mixture into the center of the leaves and roll up. Place them on top of the leaves in the saucepan and cover with a mixture of olive oil, water and the juice of a lemon. Put a lid on and simmer for about 45 minutes.
Let them cool in the pan, then remove and serve cold.
It was something like that anyway!
Overall the verdict was good as we all ate them!
I got some Greek white wine too! (Retsina)

Olives with feta, those big beans in tomato sauce and some peppers stuffed with feta.


I made Pastitsio using this recipe but forgot to take a photo - so here is a picture from when I made it before! The only difference I do to that recipe is to use only one can of tomatoes, but add 200ml of red wine and two tablespoons of tomato puree.
It is the best Patitsio recipe ever. Many thanks once again Evelyn.


I made an individual bowl of Greek salad for everyone, but I made a really nice dressing following a recipe I'd seen in Rick Stein's book. Remember though, he was the one that made me put too much red wine vinegar in my Beef Stifado!.......So this time I was ready for him.
He said 1 tablespoon, I used only 1 teaspoon!
I made Rick Stein's salad dressing recipe from his Mediterranean Escapes book.

Left to right: Paul, Matthew and Caroline.


For dessert I made Galaktoboureko using this recipe by Peter of Kalofagas blog.
Thank you Peter for such an excellent and easy to follow recipe and for your help via email.
PS: Anyone in the UK - I managed to get semolina flour in Waitrose.



With ice cream, of course!!!


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A GLUG OF OIL