All posts by Panos Nakint

Making Baklava

Baklava is a Greek dessert inspired by the Turkish cuisine. It was founded by the Greek women that used to live in the area in Turkey that belonged to Greece.

INGREDIENTSNutrition

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 325. Layer half of the sheets of phyllo one sheet at a time, in a greased 11x7x2 baking pan, brushing each sheet evenly with butter and folding ends over if necessary to fit into pan.
  2. Keep unused sheets covered with plastic wrap while assembling baklava to prevent drying.
  3. Mix 1/4 cup of the sugar and cinnamon; stir in walnuts.
  4. Sprinkle nut mixture evenly over buttered phyllo in pan.
  5. Layer remaining phyllo, one sheet at a time, over nut mixture, brushing each sheet evenly with butter.
  6. Cut diagonally into squares, cutting completely through all layers.
  7. Bake in preheated oven until crisp and golden, about one hour.
  8. Combine remaining sugar, the water, lemon juice and honey in small saucepan; cook and stir over low heat until sugar dissolves.
  9. Heat to boiling; pour evenly over hot baklava.
  10. Let stand loosely covered 8 hours or overnight.

Traditional Greek Salad Recipe

Back with the Greek food recipes, today we are making Greek salad. Not like the one you will find in the restaurants in America, but the one Greek people actually make. (Better results with fresh and imported vegetables).
YIELD
Makes about 4 1/2 cups

INGREDIENTS

    • 3/4 pound tomatoes, seeded, diced (about 2 cups)
    • 2 cups diced seeded peeled cucumber (from about 1 large)
    • 1 cup diced red bell pepper (from about 1 large)
    • 1/4 cup pitted kalamata olives or other brine-cured black olives, halved
    • 1/4 cup diced red onion
    • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
    • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
    • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
    • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese (about 2 ounces)

Homemade Tzatziki Recipe

The series of homemade Greek recipes continues, with homemade tzatziki. Tzatziki is a Greek yogurt like sauce, that most of us here in America know from Cava. In Greece, every meal is accompanied by tzatziki and Greek people love to eat it on pita bread. Have you ever had tzatziki? Did you notice that every place has its own recipe? Why do you think that happens?

Homemade Tzatziki

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 cups plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 Persian cucumber, small dice
  • Juice of 1 lemon plus more if needed
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 2 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. In a large bowl, combine the Greek yogurt, diced cucumber, lemon juice garlic and dill. Stir to combine.
  2. Season with salt and pepper and taste. Adjust salt, pepper or lemon juice depending on your preference. Serve immediately or store in an air-tight container for up to 3 days.

Homemade Greek Yogurt

DIY Homemade Greek Yogurt

INGREDIENTS

  • 8 cups milk
  • 4 tablespoons plain yogurt with live and active cultures or freeze-dried yogurt starter

DIRECTIONS

  1. 1.

    In a heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat, bring milk to 180°F, stirring regularly to prevent scorching. Once milk has reached temperature, allow it to cool to 110°F (place pot in an ice bath to speed cooling, if desired).

  2. 2.

    When milk has cooled, add yogurt to the pot and whisk thoroughly to combine.

  3. 3.

    Pour milk and starter mixture into two quart-sized jars (and smaller 1/2-pint, if using) and screw on lids. Place them in a small insulated cooler and fill with 120°F water until jars are submerged nearly up to their lids. Close cooler and leave in a draft-free, undisturbed place for six hours or until desired tartness is achieved.

  4. 4.

    When incubation is complete, remove jars from water bath and place in refrigerator for at least six hours to halt culturing and set yogurt.

  5. 5.

    At this point, yogurt may be eaten, but to achieve a Greek-style consistency, it will need to be strained. Place a fine mesh strainer over a bowl and line it with two layers of cheese cloth. Spoon yogurt into lined strainer and allow to drain for two hours or until desired thickness is achieved.

  6. 6.

    Transfer yogurt to a storage container and refrigerate until needed. Remaining leftover whey (approximately two cups) may be reserved for another use if desired.

    http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2012/09/diy-homemade-greek-yogurt-recipe.html

The secret for the best Spanakopita (Greek Spinach-pie)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat 4 tablespoons of olive oil in a large saucepan and sauté the onions and leek until translucent, about 2-3 minutes. Add the spinach and saute until the leaves have wilted and the liquid has cooked off, about 8-10 minutes.
  2. Remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool somewhat. When cool enough to handle, finely chop the spinach and place in a large bowl.
  3. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  4. Lightly oil (always use olive oil!) a 12 inch in diameter, metal baking pan (you can use a larger baking pan – you will just have a thinner pita, but don’t use a smaller one), or a 10 x 15 inch rectangular baking pan.
  5. Add dill and feta cheese to the spinach. Add salt and pepper to taste (careful with the salt – the feta will add quite a bit of its own). Pour the eggs over and give a stir to combine well.
  6. Open up the phyllo pastry and place on a work surface. If using the country style pastry proceed, if using the thinner phyllo; cover with a damp cloth. (Continue to cover the pastry sheets with the damp cloth each time you remove one as you prepare the pie.).
  7. Layer the phyllo in the pan, allowing the edges to hang over the sides of the pan, brushing each phyllo layer generously with olive oil.
  8. Use up half the phyllo sheets to make the bottom pastry layer, allowing excess pastry to drape over edge of pan.
  9. Put the spinach mixture in and press the top down gently to smooth filling. Tuck in the pastry draping over the edges.
  10. Repeat layering with the remaining phyllo, oiling each sheet generously.
  11. Using a sharp knife, score the upper layers of pastry into the size pieces you will want to serve once the pie is baked- BE CAREFUL NOT TO CUT THROUGH BOTTOM PASTRY.
  12. Bake the pie in the middle of the oven for approximately 40-45 minutes until it is golden brown. For the last 15-20 minutes, I put my baking pan directly on the oven floor to crisp it better.
  13. Cool till just warm (we never, but never eat this hot! The flavours just wouldn’t come through properly). Cut into serving pieces and serve either just warm or at room temperature.
  14. Note: If my spinach filling appears to be too ‘wet’, I often take 2 of the phyllo sheets and use them as a ‘layer’ between the spinach filling; these sheets absorb the extra liquid (they must not be brushed with oil).
  15. It’s also worth noting that Greeks love their olive oil! I have used olive oil with a lighter hand than most Greeks in this recipe – but it may still be too much for you. Feel free to add the amount you feel most comfortable with, but be aware that flavour may be compromised.

This article busts the myths about Vitamin C supplements helping you stay away from the doctor. However, the best way to stay away from the doctor is some super foods!

Just because remedies for the common cold are commonplace, doesn’t mean they’re effective. Here are the hard facts about common-cold care.

vitamin c, common cold, Food Cures
Skip the vitamin C supplements.
Although getting appropriate amounts of vitamin C is very important for maintaining a healthy immune system, research has found that large supplemental doses don’t seem to do much of anything. In fact, it’s been proven that vitamin C in amounts greater than 200 mg — that’s more than double the RDA — had no additional effects of boosting immunity or preventing colds. For those who feel compelled to take an extra supplemental dose, stick with 200 mg (certainly not more than 500). But nothing beats getting a boost naturally by eating plenty of vitamin C–rich foods such as bell peppers, broccoli, oranges, and strawberries.http://www.joybauer.com/photo-gallery/common-cold/skip-the-vitamin-c-supplements.aspx

Where do you think food myths come from?