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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 13 June 2015
DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 13 JUNE 2015 21 FOOD Stuffed miniature eggplant (papoutsakia) This aubergine-based recipe literally translates to 'little eggplant shoes'. The original recipe for papoutsakia calls for halved eggplants, but the Ottomans preferred to create incisions in the vegetable and keep the juices in. Ingredients: 2 medium onions, finely chopped 1 garlic clove, minced 500g minced beef 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon 1/4 cup butter 1 cup milk 2 medium tomatoes, chopped 2 teaspoons salt 1/2 teaspoon pepper chopped parsley 1 egg, beaten 3/4 cup grated kefalotiri or 3/4 cup parmesan cheese 2 tablespoons dry breadcrumbs 12 small round eggplants 1 1/2 cups tomato sauce Preparation: 1. Preheat over to 180°C 2. Peel a thin 2cm strip from one end of the eggplant to the other and make an incision along the strip to create a little pocket. 3. Place in baking dish and bake in moderate oven until soft and light brown, about 30-45 minutes. Method: 1. Saute the onions, garlic, meat and cinnamon lightly in butter, stirring constantly in a large pan or pot. 2. Add tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. 3. Cook covered for about 15 minutes, allowing the juices to reduce and the meat Stuffed squid (calamarakia gemista) This might seem a bit time-consuming but if you actually get down to preparing it, you will realise it is an easy recipe that will impress your guests. Keep in mind that squid is usually sold cleaned; if not, you can ask the fishmonger to clean it for you but make sure you keep the tentacles. Ingredients: 4 medium-sized squid, cleaned 100g breadcrumbs, freshly made from stale bread 2 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped 2 tbsp basil, roughly chopped 2 tbsp chives, chopped 2 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped ¼ tsp dried chilli flakes 2 anchovy fillets 2 tbsp grated Parmesan 200g cherry tomatoes, halved extra virgin olive oil zest of 1 lemon, finely grated Method: 1. Dry the squid and roughly chop the tentacles. 2. For the stuffing, place the breadcrumbs, herbs, garlic, chilli, anchovies, lemon zest, parmesan, tentacles and 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a food processor and pulse until combined. Season with salt and pepper. 3. Stuff the squid and close the ends with toothpicks. Chill until ready to cook. 4. Heat the oven to 200˚C and meanwhile, place the squid in a pan and cook for 2-3 mins, turning once. 5. Add the tomatoes to the pan, transfer to the oven and cook for 7-10 mins. Baked stuffed mushrooms (manitaria gemista) Stuffed mushrooms make a perfect entree or finger food option for your dinner table. Ingredients: 650g flat or portobello mushrooms 1 purple onion, finely chopped 2 garlic cloves, crushed 300g baby spinach, trimmed 250g low-fat ricotta 2 finely chopped zucchini 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon rind 120g baby rocket leaves 200g punnet grape tomatoes, halved 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar olive oil Method: 1. Trim stems from mushrooms. Finely chop. Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Spray with oil. Cook the onion, stirring, for 5 minutes. Add mushroom stem. Cook for 3 minutes or until soft. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until aromatic. 2. Place spinach and zucchini in a heatproof bowl. Cover with boiling water. Set aside for 30 seconds. Drain and rinse under cold running water. Squeeze out excess liquid. Finely chop and place in a bowl. Stir in the onion mixture, ricotta and lemon rind. Season with pepper. 3. Preheat oven to 180°C. Line a large baking tray with non-stick baking paper. Place mushrooms, cut-side up, on prepared tray. Divide mixture among mushrooms. Cover with foil. Roast for 15 minutes. Remove foil and roast for a further 10 minutes or until tender. 4. Combine the rocket, tomato and vinegar in a bowl. Divide mushrooms and salad among serving plates. Stuffed zucchini flowers (gemistoi kolokythoanthoi) Stuffed zucchini flowers is one of Greece's most unique summer recipes but it's easy to get zucchini flowers in Australian local grocery markets. Ingredients: 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon rind 130g fresh ricotta 100g cup basil leaves, chopped 40g finely grated pecorino ½ teaspoon dried chilli flakes 20 zucchini flowers (courgette), baby zucchini attached 150g cornflour (cornstarch) 75g self-raising flour, plus extra, for dusting 430ml iced water 1 tablespoon sea salt flakes 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon rind vegetable oil, for frying baby purple and green basil leaves, to serve lemon salt Method: 1. To make the lemon salt, place the salt and lemon rind in a small bowl and rub together with your fingertips to combine. Set aside. 2. Place the lemon rind, ricotta, basil, pecorino and chilli in a bowl and mix to combine. 3. Gently spoon 1 teaspoonful of the mixture into each zucchini flower, twisting the petals to enclose. 4. Place the cornflour, self-raising flour and water in a bowl and mix until just combined (the mixture will be a bit lumpy). 5. Allow to stand for 10 minutes. Heat 1cm of oil in a large, deep saucepan over high heat until hot. 6. Dust the zucchini flowers in the extra flour and dip into the batter. 7. Cook, in batches, for 2-3 minutes or until puffed and golden. 8. Drain on absorbent paper. Top the zucchini flowers with purple and green basil and the lemon salt to serve. to dry before removing it from the heat. 4. Add parsley, the egg, cheese and breadcrumbs. 5. Create an opening in the eggplant and stuff with the meat mixture, making sure each little eggplant gets an equal amount of stuffing. 6. Melt butter over low heat and add flour, then salt, pepper and nutmeg; stirring until everything blends. 7. Remove from heat and gradually stir in milk . 8. Return to heat stirring constantly, until the bechamel sauce is thick and smooth. 9. Remove from heat and add the egg and remaining cheese to the sauce and whisk briskly, to prevent the egg from curdling. 10. Pour about one tablespoon on top of each eggplant pocket. 11. Sprinkle with additional grated cheese and dot with butter. 12. Add tomato sauce to the pan. 13. Bake for about 35 minutes longer.
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