Truth About Greek Recipes – A Merger Of Mediterranean Cooking Styles
Greek cuisine is a perfect blend of vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes including various kinds of meats, poultry, fish and fresh vegetables, with the taste from Italian and other Mediterranean cuisines. A mix of sharp-flavored spices and herbs makes Greek recipes distinctive from other recipes. Olives, lemons, garlic and a large variety of herbs are the main seasonings in family and time-tested recipes.Greek celebrations, festivals and religious observations are the center of the Greek life, bringing families and friends together to savor the richness of the food.
Religious Holiday Food Lent is the beginning of the Easter celebrations in line with Greek customs. People cleanse their bodies on the day of Lent and make themselves ready for Christ resurrection.Food eaten during this time has the word “nistisima” after it, indicating that it doesn’t contain any of the restricted foods. ‘Tsoureki’ is the traditional Greek bread prepared at Easter has little sweet taste and is well-liked in Greek cuisine. Specially made Easter cookies are shared with friends and guests at the time of Easter in Greek. In Greek culture, Easter Sunday is celebrated with fun and frolic. The special attraction in Greek Easter food is ‘Mayeritsa’, a soup containing organs of lamb along with other spices and seasonings.
During the Christmas holidays, the Greek custom includes melomakarona (cookies topped with honey and walnuts) and kourabiethes (almond sugar cookies). Desserts and a large variety of cakes are also enjoyed by the Greeks at the time of festivals.
Filo Dishes Filo dough, an ultra-thin, flaky pastry, is the foundation of many favorite Greek recipes. Some famous Greek dishes such as ‘spanakopita’ (pie made of spinach) and ‘baklava’ (famous Greek nut pastry) are the perfect examples of filo dough.Other favorite Greek recipes with filo include seafood appetizers, “nest” side dishes, appetizers and desserts and tarts.
Meats The favorite meat served in Greek homes and restaurants is lamb, which is mostly spit-roasted. Lamb is utilized for main dishes and in casseroles with vegetables. Other meats enjoyed in the Greek culture are chicken, pork, beef and fish. ‘Souvlaki’ is the frequently served sandwich in Greek cuisine that is made with any kind of meat mentioned above.
Pita Bread Pita bread is the widely served side dish that can be eaten in any of the Greek meals. Pita bread is most commonly eaten with specially made yogurt-cucumber dip or lemon dip mixed with olive oil and herb seasonings.Pita also serves as the wrap for Greek-style sandwiches, including gyros (pronounced YEE-ros), which often include thinly sliced lamb, tomatoes, onions and yogurt dressing.
Salad Recipes Salad recipes in Greek cuisine are a perfect combination of tangy ingredients such as tomatoes and olives. Feta cheese is also one of the popular ingredients used in Greek salads.The dressing has an olive oil base and is mixed with vinegar and other seasonings. Greek style salad garnish include nuts.
Variety of Vegetables Greek cuisine is known for featuring a variety of vegetables in season. Moussaka is an eggplant-based, casserole-style dish, layered with tomatoes, peppers, onions and sometimes meat. Almost all seasonal and fresh vegetables are used in Greek cuisine such as cabbage, carrots and all kind of green vegetables.
Olives and Lemons Many Greek foods, including main dishes and salads, call for olives, olive oil, and lemons. Most of the Greek main dishes as well as salad recipes include olives and lemons. Even olive oil is extensively used in Greek recipes.Olive oil is one of the most common ingredients in Greek cuisine. It is used in salads, main dishes and as dipping sauce. Lemons provide the zesty flavor Greek dishes are known for.