Tag Archives: Greek Food

Greek Stewed White Beans with Tomatoes, Oregano and Olive Oil

Fasolada1 (1 of 1)My best friend growing up was (is) half Greek. Her family often had me over for dinner. The meals were always spectacular, and typically featured Greek cuisine. This is where I tasted my first fasolada (φασολάδα). It was delicious! It’s a comfort food in Greece, and I’ve finally decided to make it myself — I don’t know why I didn’t do it sooner because it is so simple to prepare, and I think this version is really good. I remember my friend’s mother’s version as having more tomatoes and less carrots, and lots of olive oil (and I’ll try that next time), but again, I really enjoy this version. Give it a try and let me know what you think! (Note:  this also does well in a slow cooker, on low, 7 – 8 hours).

1 lb cannellini beans, soaked overnight or flash-soaked by bringing to a boil in 8 cups cold water, boiling 2 minutes, removing from heat and letting stand for 1 hour, then draining
1 large onion, diced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
3 stalks celery
1 28-oz can whole, peeled tomatoes, crushed in a bowl with hands
2 Tbsp tomato paste
5 Tbsp olive oil
2 bay leaves
1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
5 cups cold water
3 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
Additional olive oil for serving
Additional chopped parsley for garnish

In a large Dutch oven or similar pan, bring beans and 8 cups cold water to a boil. Add all other ingredients except salt and pepper (I’ve read that adding the seasoning during the cooking process makes the beans tough — wouldn’t want that!). Bring back to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 1 1/2 hours. My version is a bit thicker than others, so add additional water if you prefer soupy. Remove from heat, season with the salt and pepper. Garnish individual servings and drizzle with a bit more olive oil and parsley. Serve with crusty bread.

Serves 6.

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Grilled Lamb-Beef Burgers with Tzatziki Sauce

Lamb-Beef_Burgers1 (1 of 1)Who knew I liked lamb! I sure didn’t growing up. I’ve learned to really like it over the years, however, especially in Greek, Turkish and Middle Eastern cuisines. This dish is a perfect example of my style of lamb, which with the herbs, spices, garlic and tzatziki, is delicious. I hope you’ll try it!

1/2 lb ground lamb
1/2 lb ground sirloin
1/3 cup finely chopped red onion
4 tsp chopped fresh mint
4 tsp chopped fresh oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp garamasala
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
3 garlic cloves, peeled and very finely grated or minced

1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
2 oz crumbled feta cheese
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp chopped fresh mint
1/4 cup peeled, seeded and chopped cucumber
1/4 tsp salt

1 loaf ciabatta bread
Sliced red onions
Lettuce

For the burgers, add the first 10 ingredients (lamb through garlic) to a large bowl. Combine well.Lamb-Beef_Burgers2 (1 of 1) Remove meat mixture from bowl and divide equally into 4 portions. Shape each into square, 3 to 4-inch patties. Set aside.

For the tzatziki sauce, combine the next 6 ingredients (yogurt through salt) in a medium bowl, mixing well. Cover and place in refrigerator.

Slice ciabatta loaf horizontally down middle, then slice crosswise into 4 pieces, so that you end up with 4 tops and 4 bottoms.

Prepare grill.

Place burgers on hot grill; cover and cook about 4 minutes on each side (flipping only once). Place ciabatta buns face-side down on grill, cooking until browned (about 1 minute).

Assemble burgers on the buns, topping each with a spoonful tzatziki. Serve with lettuce and red onions.

Serves 4.

Grilled Chicken Sandwich with Fresh Oregano, Lemon and Feta

Grilled_Chicken_Sandwiches_with_Fresh_Oregano6 (1 of 1)This is one of my outdoor chicken recipes that I always have the ingredients for, from spring to fall. It’s simple, fresh, and it’s not time-consuming to prepare. Made this last evening when I returned home from work (it was a beautiful, warm evening here, so I had to fire up the grill!).

 

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to an even thickness (about 1/2 inch)
Juice of one lemon
1 garlic clove, minced
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tsp fresh, chopped oregano
4 hamburger (or similar) buns
Lettuce
1 small onion, sliced
1 tsp fresh, chopped parsley
4 tsp crumbled feta cheese

Place the lemon juice, garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and oregano in a small bowl. Whisk until the ingredients are well-incorporated.

Place chicken and the lemon juice mixture in a plastic zip-lock bag. Seal bag and move around so that the ingredients are combined. Refrigerate for about 1/2 hour.

Meanwhile, prepare the grill.

Grill the marinated chicken on one side for about 9 minutes, then about 4 minutes on the other.

Remove chicken from grill. Slice each breast in half crosswise, so that you end up with 4 even pieces. Assemble the sandwiches with the buns (I like to butter them and toast a bit on the grill), lettuce, chicken, parsley, onions and a teaspoon each of the feta. Serve.

Serves 4.