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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 31 March 2018
DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 31 MARCH 2018 15 FOOD FOR THOUGHT 8. Pour in a corner of the pan about 1/2 – 3/4 cup water and tilt the pan so that it spreads, but don't pour it over the vegetables. Pour more later if it seems like they are becoming dry. 9. Cover with aluminum foil and roast for about an hour. 10. After that time, check and see if the vegetables are cooked (you should be able to stick a fork in them easily). If they are cooked, remove the foil and roast for another 1/2 hour until the potatoes start turning golden brown. 11. Let it cool and serve with bread and feta cheese. You can also serve cold. Holy Thursday is the day that the baking is done, the tsourekia, koulouria and the dying of the red eggs. No other jobs or chores around the house should be taken care of. Dora Kitinas-Gogos shares the two Holy Thursday recipes she still swears by: KOULOURAKIA PASCHALINA (EASTER BISCUITS) Ingredients: • 1 cup butter, plus extra for greasing cookie sheets • 1 1/2 cups sugar • 4 eggs • 2 egg yolks • 3 tsp vanilla extract • 1/2 tsp ground mastic • 1/4 cup orange juice • 1 oz baking soda • 1/2 cup milk • 9 cups all purpose flour • Egg wash, made by beating one egg with two tbsp of milk Method: Preheat the oven to 170°C. Grease the cookie sheets with butter. 1. Beat together the butter and sugar with a mixer. Beating constantly add the eggs and egg yolks, one at a time, beating after each addition. Add the vanilla, mastic and orange juice and mix. 2. Change to the dough hook. Combine the baking soda and milk in a bowl. 3. Beating constantly adding the milk mixture in three batches alternating with the flour. Knead the mixture, adding flour if necessary to form a smooth, easy to handle dough. 4. Take pieces of the dough and form them into balls about 3/4 of an inch in circumference. It will be convenient to finish rolling all the dough before proceeding to the next step 5. Roll each ball into a rod shape and fold it in half, then place them on the cookie sheets and brush them with egg wash. 6. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes. They should have a light golden colour, not too brown. 7. Take out of the oven and let cool slightly. Remove them from the cookie sheets carefully, as koulourakia can be fragile. Stack them in layers inside cookie tins. Note: Koulourakia will keep for up to two months, unless you have little two-legged creatures that are always hungry, that can open tins and take out handfuls of koulourakia to enjoy with a glass of milk. TSOUREKI (SWEET EASTER BREAD) This is a failsafe recipe; it has come to me via a friend from Thessaloniki that her mother taught her that has been in their family for generations. I have translated it from the Greek, which utilises Greek ingredients, and have substituted with what we have here; it is a large quantity as in Greece baking is not for the weak. If you want a smaller quantity, halve the recipe. Ingredients: *Amongst the spices there is a spice called κουκουλέ (koukoule), I have omitted it from this recipe. • 3 kg plain flour • 126g fresh yeast • 1.25 kg sugar • 10 – 12 eggs • 1 litre warm milk • 1 soup spoon of salt • 1 packet of mahlepi • 1 packet masticha • 2 tbsp seed oil • 125g unsalted butter Secrets . . . 1. Everything has to be warm 2. The butter goes in at the end. 3. We don't kneed, we only fold till everything becomes one. This is important as too much kneading, makes the gluten more glutinous and will make the tsoureki hard. Method: 1. Dissolve the yeast in a glass of warm water adding a little of the flour till it has a runny dough consistency, cover and put aside in a warm spot till it rises. 2. In a large bowel put the sugar, salt, the spices, the seed oil. 3. Add the warm milk and mix. 4. Beat the eggs slightly in a separate bowl and add them to the mixture. 5. Add the yeast and mix everything preferably by hand. 6. Add the flour gradually folding gently by hand till you have soft dough. 7. Melt the butter and add while warm but not hot and fold in gently till all the butter is one with the dough. 8. The dough should be warm; we put it aside to rise covered well. I usually cover with a blanket as previous women in my family have done. Leave for at least an hour or when the dough had doubled its size. 9. Make the tsourekia into any shape that you wish and you might like to add a red egg. 10. Put the tsourekia aside to rest for 1/2 hour, brush with an egg yolk that has been slightly diluted in warm water. 11. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes in a medium heat of 170°C; the time depends on the size. Kali Orexi and Kalo Pasha!
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