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axariotisxy

Active member
I have noticed in Greek restaurants that the vegetables I am served are always soft. I like them this way, they are way easier to digest than the half-raw vegetables served in typical restaurant situations.

They are not only soft, but the perfect amount of softness - they aren't falling apart and still taste great. So, I tried to cook my vegetables a little longer at home and it was a disaster. They got too soft and everything fell apart. Any tips?
 
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Thank you! Seems the "popular" advice of last decade or so is to steam or cook vegetables and have them remain somewhat crispy, which goes against how we had our vegetables served to us as children. I don't recall any Greek child refusing to eat vegetables. Seemed like we all liked them.

What vegetables have you tried, and how did you cook them and how long did you cook them? Steamed, roasted in oven? I've made big pans of vegetables in the oven, drizzled with olive oil and all cooked until tender. Some vegetables lend themselves to this method better than others. Typically, I would roast a potato or two, a large onion, eggplant, tomatoes, zucchini and/or yellow summer squash. Zucchini usually cooks fairly quickly, so I'd add it towards the end, needs 40-60 minutes at most. I'd also check pan and move vegetables around a bit ever 30-45 minutes, this also gives you a good idea of just how "done" they are.

Here's a site that has a recipe you might want to take a look at.

Don't give up. And good luck!
 
I find that when I cook the vegetables in some kind of acid, it usually breaks them down more and makes them soft. For me, it was a matter of, in general, getting past the convention in the US and cooking vegetables for longer than we were taught. It's been a timing thing, plus the acid, that have made the biggest difference,
 
When I tried replicating it at home, I faced the same problem of them turning into mush. Here's a tip that worked for me: try blanching your veggies briefly in boiling water and then transferring them to an ice bath to stop the cooking process. This way, they'll retain some texture while still being soft enough. It's all about finding that balance! By the way, have you checked out Americasrestaurant.com? They have some amazing recipes and recommendations for great restaurants to visit. Just thought you might find it helpful!
 
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Menu - Advice on What to Serve at a Greek Dinner Party

I'm planning to host a Greek-themed dinner party and could use some advice on what dishes to serve. I want to create an authentic experience for my guests and ensure they get a true taste of Greek cuisine.

Here are a few ideas I have in mind:
  • Tzatziki
  • Dolmades
  • Spanakopita
  • Souvlaki
  • Greek Salad
  • Lemon Potatoes
Should I add or subtract anything?

Chocolate Koulourakia Recipe

I had Chocolate Koulourakia when in Greece and I recently found and tried the recipe. It was good! Thought I'd share:

Ingredients:​

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon milk (if needed)
  • 1 egg yolk + 1 tablespoon water (for egg wash)
  • Sesame seeds (optional)

Instructions:​

  1. Preheat Oven: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Cream Butter and Sugar: In a large bowl, beat the softened butter and granulated sugar together until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes.
  3. Add Eggs and Vanilla: Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in the vanilla extract.
  4. Combine Dry Ingredients: In a separate bowl, sift together the cocoa powder, baking powder, flour, and salt.
  5. Mix Dry and Wet Ingredients: Gradually add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture, mixing until a dough forms. If the dough is too dry, add a tablespoon of milk to help bring it together.
  6. Shape the Cookies: Take small pieces of dough and roll them into ropes about 4-5 inches long. Fold each rope in half and twist the ends together to form a twist shape, or shape them into rings if you prefer.
  7. Egg Wash: In a small bowl, beat the egg yolk with 1 tablespoon of water. Brush the tops of the cookies with the egg wash. Sprinkle with sesame seeds if desired.
  8. Bake: Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheets. Bake in the preheated oven for 15-18 minutes, or until the cookies are firm and slightly golden around the edges.
  9. Cool and Serve: Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

What is Greek Retsina Wine?

I'm intrigued by Greek wines and recently came across Retsina wine. Could anyone share insights into what Retsina wine is? I'm curious about its unique flavor profile, production methods, and any cultural significance it holds in Greece. How is it traditionally enjoyed, and are there specific dishes it pairs well with?

Moreover, I'd appreciate recommendations on notable brands or regions known for producing quality Retsina. If you have any personal experiences with Retsina or tips on where to purchase it outside of Greece, that would be fantastic too.

Adding Hot Pepper to Tiropita?

I'm planning to make Greek tiropita (cheese pie) for a family gathering, and I was thinking of adding a twist by incorporating jalapeño peppers. Has anyone tried this before? I'm curious about how well the spiciness of the jalapeños would complement the creamy cheese filling and the flaky phyllo dough. Would the flavors blend well, or would it be too overpowering? Also, should I use fresh jalapeños, or would pickled ones be better for this recipe?

If you have any tips on how to incorporate them effectively, such as how to prepare the jalapeños or how much to use, I'd really appreciate your advice. I'm aiming for a balance where the heat adds an interesting kick without overwhelming the traditional taste of the tiropita.

Good Greek Dips and Spreads for Entertaining

I like to entertain and I like to have some good recipes on hand to throw together at the last minute. Did I miss anything? Here's what I have:
  • Tzatziki
  • Hummus
  • Melitzanosalata
  • Taramosalata
  • Fava
I eat tapenade (olive spread) a lot in Greece, but I don't have a good recipe...
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