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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 12 September 2015
DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 12 SEPTEMBER 2015 21 FOOD String beans in a rich olive oil and fresh tomato sauce (fasolakia giahni) Deciding what to cook for dinner each night can be quite the challenge. Our healthy and easy recipe for string beans with baby potatoes and zucchini in a fresh tomato sauce is a very popular vegetarian Greek dish (fasolakia giahni) that is also a one pot wonder. The key ingredient to this recipe is the olive oil, which is at the heart of all good Greek cooking. Ingredients 1 kg string beans, washed and with ends trimmed 8 baby potatoes, peeled and halved 2 zucchini, washed and chopped 5 ripe Roma tomatoes, blended into sauce 1 Spanish onion, finely chopped 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped salt and pepper to taste 1/3 cup olive oil 2 cups water Method 1. Add oil to large saucepan and add string beans. Saute for two minutes. 2. Add fresh tomato sauce, onion and garlic and saute for another few minutes. 3. Add potatoes, zucchini, water, salt and pepper and stir. 4. Lower heat to medium and allow to cook with lid on for 50 minutes or until beans are tender and water has reduced. Stir frequently. It's that easy! Lemon and yoghurt syrup cake 2 cups water Spring is in the air and there is nothing more delightful than a light and fluffy Greek lemon sponge cake (ravani), with a dollop of natural Greek yoghurt or vanilla bean ice cream on the side, to satisfy a sweet tooth! We garnished our ravani with pistachios and fresh lavender, however, you can leave it plain or use walnuts, flaked almonds, pecans or any nut of your choice. Also, if you aren't a fan of lemon, oranges are a great substitute and also in season. Ingredients For the cake: 6 eggs 1 cup caster sugar 1 cup fine semolina 1 cup self-raising flour 1 tablespoon vanilla sugar 4 tablespoons full cream milk 1 tablespoon baking powder 1 lemon’s rind and juice 1/4 cup pistachios and fresh lavender (optional) For the syrup: 3 cups sugar 1 lemon for rind and juice 1 tablespoon honey Method For the cake: 1. Preheat oven to 180°C. 2. Grease a 28cm round or square tin and line with baking paper. 3. Beat the eggs and sugar with an electric mixer for five minutes, or until they become light and fluffy. 4. Add milk, lemon rind and vanilla sugar and mix for a few more minutes. Slowly add flour, lemon juice, semolina and baking powder and beat for another few minutes. 5. Place in baking tin and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. For the syrup: In the meantime, add the sugar, water, lemon juice, lemon rind and honey in a medium saucepan and simmer for six minutes. When the cake is ready, pour syrup over entire cake. Garnish with pistachios. Horta - Greek leafy greens Boiled leafy greens (horta) are so popular in Greece and are consumed all year round by both mainlanders and islanders. You will definitely find them on a menu in most traditional Greek taverns, as they are a staple in the Mediterranean diet. The health benefits are second to none and horta can be served either as a side dish, or a light, simple lunch. I love eating my horta with a big chunk of feta and slices of country loaf bread, which I dip straight into that juicy, lemony oil … I was lucky enough to receive a big, beautiful bunch of leafy greens straight from my aunt's amazing veggie patch, and let's be honest, there is nothing like the taste of homegrown produce. However, you should be able to find all sorts of leafy greens at any good grocer Ingredients 1kg fresh leafy greens 6 litres water 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil sea salt to taste 1 lemon, juiced Method 1. Wash your greens thoroughly in the sink a few times over so as to rinse away any soil. 2. Place the greens in a large pot and cover with water. Using a wooden spoon, press the leaves down to ensure the water is covering all greens. 3. Bring the water to a boil and then reduce to medium heat. Place lid on pot and boil for about 20 minutes or until greens are tender. 4. Drain and place on serving dish. To serve, drizzle with olive oil, lemon juice and sprinkle with sea salt. Leek pie (prasopita) Prasopita (leek and feta pie) is a traditional and delicious vegetarian dish that is not as well known as Greek spanakopita (spinach pie), but it tastes just as good, if not better! Today we share Yiayia's classic recipe - with the traditional technique of rolling out the pastry and making the filo from scratch. This recipe has been in our family for over four generations and is very much loved by all our family members. For those of you who don't feel confident enough yet in trying to make your own pastry - you can use commercial filo - a 375 gram pack is ideal - but make sure the fillo is completely thawed before using. Ingredients For the pastry: 400g all purpose flour (plus extra to roll out) 1 tablespoon of vinegar 2 tablespoons olive oil 120ml warm water 1/2 teaspoon of salt For the filling: 4 leeks 1 bunch parsley 4 eggs 400g feta 1/2 cup of semolina 1 cup of olive oil (plus extra for drizzling) salt and pepper to taste Method For the pastry (Part 1): 1. In a large bowl mix the flour with the salt, vinegar and olive oil and place warm water in the middle of the mixture. 2. Knead the dough well and then divide into six equal parts. 3. Leave for 1/2 hour covered in cling wrap to rest. In the meantime you can prepare the filling: 1. Clean the leeks and parsley and cut into 1/2cm pieces. 2. Place in a deep large bowl and add salt, pepper, eggs, semolina, olive oil and grate the feta cheese on top. 3. Mix the filling thoroughly and set aside. For the pastry (Part 2): 1. Lightly sprinkle flour on the surface you will be using to roll out the dough (so the pastry won't stick). 2. Flatten the balls one by one and begin rolling them out slowly using a large rolling pin, they should end up being about 60cm in diameter. 3. Make sure you continue lightly sprinkling flour between each filo you roll out so they do not stick together. Placing it all together: 1. Lightly drizzle olive oil in your baking dish (Mum uses a round one but square will do) and place one of the filo pastries in the dish. 2. Lightly drizzle more olive oil and place the second sheet of filo. 3. Spread one third of your filling you have prepared evenly over the surface. 4. Add another layer of filo pastry and spread 1/2 of the remaining mixture. 5. Place another layer of filo and remaining mixture. 6. Add the final two layers of pastry and drizzle lightly with olive oil. Fold the edges in. 7. Place in preheated moderate oven and bake for about 45 minutes at 200°C.
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