Sunday, May 21, 2017

GREEK LENTIL SALAD / FAKES SALATA


An absolutely delicious and super healthy Greek style lentil salad with feta cheese and fresh and vibrant vegetables.. can be eaten as a snack or light meal.The dressing in Greek salads is always very simple.. just olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic. I like to use herb infused olive oil. You can toss in some fresh herbs like oregano, dill or parsley for Heavenly flavours. 

Ingredients:
Lentils .... 2 cups (boiled with little salt)
Bell peppers ... red and yellow (cut into strips)
Cherry tomatoes ... 10
Red onion ........ 1 small (sliced)
Fresh herbs like parsley, dill or mint ... 2 tbsps finely chopped
Kalamata olives .... 10
Feta cheese ......... crumbled for topping.
Black pepper ... freshly crushed
Salt ........ to taste

For the dressing:
Olive oil .. 3-4 tbsps
Red wine vinegar .. 2 tbsps
Garlic ............... 1 tsp (crushed)
Dried oregano .... 1 tsp
(pour these in a bottle and shake it up)


Method:
1. Boil the soaked lentils with a little salt. Drain them and set aside. Take care not to make them mushy. Let them cool.
2. Bell pepper strips can be used raw or you can saute them, bake them or roast them with a drizzle of olive oil.
3. Now take all the vegetables. olives. fresh herbs and lentils in a large bowl.
4. Stir the prepared dressing carefully.
5. Top it with crumbled Feta cheese and freshly crushed black pepper.

Recipe adapted from - mygreekdish.com

Monday, May 15, 2017

RED AMARANTH THEPLAS / RED AMARANTH ROTIS


Amaranth leaves have a very high nutritional value and are listed among the super foods.  In India we make a variety of dishes with these leaves. It is cooked with lentils to make a stir-fry or kneaded with dough to make rotis..it is added to dals .. the list is endless.
Here is a recipe of theplas made with red amaranth. You can saute the leaves like I have done or add the finely chopped ones straight away into the flour. The other add ons can be as per your choice. Knead the dough with yogurt or water.. as you like. These make a perfect lunch box menu and you can carry on your journeys as well. You can serve them with dal, curd and pickle.. They taste so good with chunda.


Ingredients:
Wheat flour ... 2 cups or as needed
Red Amaranth  .. 2  cups finely chopped.
Cumin seeds ... 1 tbsp
Desi ghee or oil ....... 1 tbsp in the dough and more for making rotis.
Coriander leaves .. handful
Green chillies ..... 1-2 finely chopped or crushed
Turmeric powder ... 1/4 tsp
Coriander powder ... 1 tsp
Yogurt .............. 1 cup


Method:

1. Heat a little ghee or oil in a pan.Add cumin seeds.







2. Add the finely chopped and washed greens and saute for a minute adding salt.






3. Let it cool.








4. Mix this into the flour along with 1 spoon ghee, coriander leaves, chopped green chillies and mentioned spice powders.






5. Knead the dough using yogurt and add water if needed.






6. Rest the dough for one hour or until you are ready to make the theplas. Roll out a small portion into a roti.







7. Roast it on a griddle.When done smear a little ghee on it to keep it soft.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

HERBED ROASTED POTATOES GREEK STYLE WITH FETA CHEESE


These flavourful potato wedges baked with garlic and herbs and really delicious served hot out of the oven and topped with crumbled feta cheese.

Ingredients:
Potatoes .... 200 gms
Oregano .... few leaves
Dried oregano .... 1 tsp
Olive oil .... 2-3 tbsps
Feta cheese ... 2 tbsps
Garlic ........... 6-8 cloves (crushed)
Water ............ 1 cup
Lemon juice .... 1 tbsp
Black pepper ... freshly crushed 1/8 tsp
Salt ............... to taste


Method:



1. Peel the potatoes and cut them into roundels or wedges.
2. Pre-heat the oven at 250 C.
3. In a bowl mix all the ingredients except feta cheese. Add salt carefully as feta is very salty cheese.
4. Spread the herbed potatoes in a baking dish or tray.
5. Add 1 cup of water and roast them for about 30 minutes.
6. Remove the tray and check them. If they need to be cooked more then sprinkle a little more water and bake for 5-7 minutes or until done.
7. Remove the potatoes into a serving dish and top them with crumbled feta cheese while still hot.
Serve immediately.

Serves - 2
Recipe adapted from - HERE


Friday, May 5, 2017

GREEN PEAS HALWA / FUDGE / MATAR KA HALWA AUR BARFI


In Indian homes sweets are made on every special occasion.Today I am posting my 1000 th recipe and it definitely calls for a celebration. Here is a halwa with a difference... Matar ka halwa.
 I had been seeing this recipe on the net since a long time and always wondered how would a halwa made from a vegetable taste like. Well I made it and it was absolutely delicious like any other halwas we make. It can also be made into a fudge / barfi by cooking it a little more to get a thicker consistency. In this recipe I have used mawa barfi which makes the job easier. If you are using plain khoya it has to be sauteed in ghee before adding. Also increase the quantity of sugar accordingly.


Ingredients:
Green peas .... 2 cups. (after grinding makes 1 cup)
Sweet mawa ... 1/2 cup 
Sugar ............. 1/2 cup
Cardamom powder .. 1/2 tsp
Desi ghee .............. 1/4 cup
Pistachios and almonds ... 1 tbsp each (sliced for garnishing)
Silver warq .. for garnishing.
A piece of dry fruit brittle ... for garnishing.


Method:

1. Grind the green peas coarsely in a grinder.









2. In a pan take desi ghee; and saute the green peas on medium flame until the colour changes and the raw flavour is gone. This may take about 10 - 12 minutes.





3. Add the cardamom powder and sugar. Keep stirring. The sugar leaves water and saute until it is thicker.






4. Now crumble the mawa barfi and mix it. If you are using khoya you have to separately saute it with a little ghee until it gives an aroma. Then you mix it into the halwa and cook further.





5. When the mixture starts leaving sides the halwa is ready.







6. Garnish it with chopped nuts, silver warq and a small piece of brittle and serve warm or cold.






7. Now if you want to make a barfi with this mixture, cook it for few more minutes stirring to get a thicker consistency.
8. Spread it on a greased tray. Sprinkle sliced nuts and garnish with silver warq.You can even add some nuts to it while cooking if you wish.


Friday, April 21, 2017

HORIATIKI / GREEK VILLAGE SALAD


Horiatiki is a traditional Greek salad made with tomatoes, cucumbers, onion, feta cheese and kalamata olives. Green bell peppers and some lettuce can be added too. It is seasoned with salt, pepper and oregano. Though people sometimes use Greek dressing but traditionally only olive oil is used.
This month in our group, Shhhhhhh Cooking Secretly the theme is Summer Salads. I was paired with Amrita Iyer who blogs at , " The Food Samatitan " ..Do check her space for lovely recipes.
 Amrita chose my two ingredients, Cucumbers and Feta cheese. I decided to go for the classic Greek salad which is light and healthy one... a perfect choice for summer.


Ingredients:
Cucumbers .... 1 (sliced)
Cherry tomatoes .. 10 - 12 (you can use the normal sliced tomato also)
Onions .............. 1 small (sliced)
Green bell pepper .. 1 small (thinly sliced)
Baby lettuce ........... as needed (you can use any variety available)
Oregano (fresh) ............. 1 tbsp chopped (use dried one if fresh is not available)
Feta cheese ................... 100 gms
Kalamata olives ............. 10 - 12
Extra virgin olive oil ...... 5-6 tbsps
Vinegar ................ 1 tbsp
Salt ............................. to taste (remember the feta cheese is very salty and add salt carefully)


Method:
1.Take all the sliced vegetables in a large bowl.
2. Pour the vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper and oregano in a jar and shake it well.
3. Add the feta cheese cubes, fresh oregano leaves and olives to the salad.
4.  Pour the prepared olive oil dressing into the salad and mix very carefully as feta cheese is very soft.
5. Serve it on a bed of lettuce leaves and garnish with some cherry tomatoes and crumbled feta cheese.
Serves - 2

Recipe adapted from - Greekboston.com




Friday, April 14, 2017

HOMEMADE SUBWAY CHICKEN SANDWICH


Fast food like burgers and subway sandwiches have become very popular these days. Making your own subway sandwich is not a difficult task. Just get all the ingredients of your choice and assemble it just the way you like it. It has a lot of stuffings and is really very filling. It is also a perfect lunch box meal.
 I have used sauteed chicken with bell pepper. You can even use ham slices or shredded meats.. choice is yours. Additional garnishings like olives, pickled jalapenos taste good too.

Ingredients:
Bread rolls ... as needed
Chicken ..... 100 gms
Bell peppers ... few strips of different colours.
Pizza seasoning ... 1 tsp
Salt ................. to taste
Oil ................... 2 tbsps
Lettuce leaves .. as needed
Cucumber slices ... few
Tomato slices ...... few
Garlic mayonnaise .. for spreading
Mustard sauce..... as needed
Tomato ketchup ... as needed
Cheese slices or grated cheese .. as needed


Method:
1. Heat oil in a pan and saute the chicken strips with garlic and salt.
2. It will just take a couple of minutes to cook and now you tip in the bell pepper strips. Season with pizza spice mix.
3. Now to assemble the sandwich slit the bread roll.
4. Spread a little garlic mayonnaise, place the lettuce leaves and sprinkle some cheese if needed.
5. Spoon the prepared chicken strips. Top it up with the cucumber and tomato slices. Squeeze some mustard sauce and tomato sauce as per your liking.
6. Carefully push all the stuffing into the slit bun.
7. Serve immediately.


Thursday, April 13, 2017

FETA CHICKEN SALAD


A simple and delicious chicken salad with feta cheese.. for added flavours you can use fresh herbs, bell peppers, cherry tomatoes and diced celery. The salad is quite filling and makes a light meal by itself. Remember that feta cheese is quite salty and add salt accordingly.

Ingredients:
Chicken ... 2 cups (boiled and shredded)
Bell pepper .. 1 (use any colour - sliced)
Cherry tomatoes ...... 10
Celery .................... 1/2 cup (diced)
Red onion ............. 1 small (sliced)
Fresh oregano or any other herb...... 1 tbsps (finely chopped)
Mayonnaise ..........3- 4 tbsps
Sour cream .......... 2 tbsps (optional)
Feta cheese ......... 2-3 tbsps (crumbled)
Olive oil ............. 2 tbsps
Salt .............. to taste
Black pepper ... for seasoning
Baby lettuce or any lettuce available .. for lining the plate.


Method:

1. Boil the chicken adding a little salt. Shred it into strips or cut with a sharp knife.






2. Wash, de-seed the bell pepper and cut into strips. Slice the onion. Cut the cherry tomatoes into halves saving few for garnishing. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Season with salt and black pepper. Add salt carefully as the feta cheese is very salty.




3. Serve on a bed of lettuce leaves.Garnish with cherry tomatoes. Refrigerate it until you serve as chilled salad tastes better.






Recipe adapted from - HERE

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

EGYPTIAN FETA CHEESE STUFFED OMELETTE


Try out this delicious omelette filled with feta cheese for your breakfast.. Add some fresh herbs for flavour along with finely chopped onion. Salt is not required as feta is already quite salty. You also have options of adding tomatoes, olives or spinach also if you like.


Ingredients:
Eggs ...  1 or as required
Feta cheese .... 1 tbsp (crumbled)
Milk ............... 1 tsp
Black pepper ... 1 pinch freshly crushed 
Onion ............ 1 tbsp (finely chopped)
Fresh oregano ... few leaves (you may use any fresh herbs available)
Oil............. 2 tbsps

Method:

1. Beat the egg with finely chopped onion and fresh oregano. Pour oil in a pan and spread the omelette mix with a spoon.






2. Mix feta cheese with milk and spoon it on the omelette when almost done. Cook on low flame until the cheese melts.





3. Roll the two ends over the cheese filling. Sprinkle freshly ground black pepper. Serve with pita roll.

Monday, April 10, 2017

FAVA BEAN DIP


There are a number of delicious Greek dishes that I had tasted during my visit to this beautiful country. I have been trying out some of them and this is a fava bean dip made from pureed fava beans ( Greek yellow split peas ) They have to be soaked and cooked for a long time or easier way is to pressure cook them.  If you cannot get these you may try with the canned fava. I have used the canned fava beans today to make this dip. Unlike other Mediterranean dips tahini is not added to this one. This dip was served with a herbed pita and tasted so delicious.

This is how the dried fava beans look like :
Image - courtesy Google

Ingredients:
Cooked or canned fava beans ... 1 cup
Garlic paste ....................... 1/2 tsp (add more if you like)
Fresh oregano .............. 1 tbsp (chopped)
Lemon juice ...................... 1 tbsps or more as per your liking
Extra virgin olive oil ......... 6 tbsps
Salt ..................... to taste
Paprika ............ a pinch or two



Method:
1. Take all the ingredients into the container of the mixer and blend together to a smooth paste.
2. Remove them into a serving bowl and top it up with some garnishings of you desire or serve plain.
3. To make the herbed pita pat the dough on a baking tray and using your finger tips make 
depressions on the surface. Sprinkle herbs and drizzle olive oil over it. Bake until done.



See the recipe of making the Pita bread dough .. HERE

Note: If you are making with the dried fava beans soak 1/2 cup beans for a couple of hours. Cook them in a saucepan adding 2 cups of water and a little salt. Simmer until done. Alternately you can pressure-cook them.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

ROASTED BEETS WITH FETA / BEETROOT AND FETA SALAD


This is a simple side dish to pair with your grilled meats or sea food. You can relish it like a salad too.

Ingredients:
Beetroots ..... 2
Red onion .... 1 small
Parsley or coriander .. 2 tbsps
Feta cheese .......... 2-3 tbsps (crumbled)
Olive oil ............. 1 tbsp
Salt ................... to taste
Black pepper ..... freshly crushed.
Lemon juice ....... 1 tbsp

Method:
1. Peel and cut the beets into small cubes.
2. Toss them with olive oil, salt and pepper.
3. Bake them in the oven at 250 C for 30 to 40 minutes or until done.
4. Remove them in a serving plate.
5. Now mix the finely chopped onion, parsley or any herb you like.
6. Top it with crumbled feta cheese

Recipe adapted from - Food Network Magazine

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