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Greek Pastitsio

(Makes: 6 Servings - Can Be Doubled)

1 1/2 lb. ground beef
1/4 tsp. pepper
8 oz. elbow macaroni
1/8 tsp. cinnamon
3 Tbsp. butter or margarine
1/8 tsp. oregano
1/4 cup flour
1 (10 3/4 oz.) can tomato puree
3 cups milk
1 large onion, finely chopped
3 eggs
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

Prepare macaroni according to directions.
Rinse with cold water; drain.
Stir flour into melted butter in a heavy saucepan.
Gradually stir in milk & cook until thickened, stirring occasionally.
Cover & cool the white sauce.

Brown the ground beef & onion in a large fry pan.
Pour off drippings. Sprinkle salt, pepper, cinnamon, & oregano over beef.

Stir in tomato puree & cook slowly for 10 minutes.
Beat together egg, & 1/3 cup of parmesan cheese.
Gently stir in macaroni.

Gradually stir in 2 cups of the white sauce into the macaroni mixture.
Place 1/2 macaroni mixture into a buttered 11-3/4 x 7-1/2 inch baking dish.

Spoon beef mixture in an even layer over macaroni.
Place remaining macaroni mixture over the beef.

Pour remaining white sauce over the top.
Bake in moderate 375 F. oven for 20 minutes.

Sprinkle with remaining parmesan cheese, & continue baking 20-25 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.

Let stand 15 minutes before cutting into squares.
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Greek Patates

(Makes: 6-8 Servings)

3 lb. White potatoes
1/2 cup Chopped yellow onions
1/4 cup Finely minced garlic
1/2 tsp. Salt
1/2 tsp. Pepper 1/2 tsp. Dry oregano
1/2 tsp. Basil
1 cup Fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup Vegetable oil
Water (as needed)

Preheat the oven to 400 F.
In a large baking pan place the peeled and quartered potatoes (add enough potatoes so that they fill the pan up, 3/4 inch from the top).
Sprinkle on the onions, garlic, salt, pepper, oregano, basil, lemon juice, and vegetable oil.

Add enough water so that the potatoes are just covered.
Stir the ingredients together very thoroughly so that everything is well mixed.

Bake the potato mixture for 45 minutes.

Carefully stir the ingredients together so that they are re-mixed.
Bake the potatoes for another 45 minutes, or until they are tender.
Remove the potatoes with a slotted spoon.
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Greek Potatoes With Lemon Vinaigrette

(Makes: 4 Servings)

1 1/2 cups olive oil
5 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons chopped shallots
2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano or 1 tablespoon dried
1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
2 garlic cloves, minced

3 pounds large russet potatoes,
peeled, each cut lengthwise into 6 wedges
1/2 cup chicken stock or canned low salt chicken broth

Preheat oven to 425F.
Whisk olive oil, lemon juice, shallots oregano, parsley and garlic in medium bowl to blend.
Season vinaigrette with salt and pepper.
Toss potatoes with 1/2 cup vinaigrette on heavy large rimmed baking sheet.

Reserve remaining vinaigrette for serving.
Pour chicken stock around potatoes.
Sprinkle potatoes with salt and pepper.

Roast potatoes until tender and golden brown, turning occasionally, about 45 minutes.

Cool completely. Using metal spatula, loosen potatoes from baking sheet to prevent sticking.

Divide potatoes equally among plates.
Drizzle some reserved lemon vinaigrette over potatoes.
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Greek Salad - (Horiatiki)

Capture the robust and sunny flavors of the Mediterranean in this traditional Greek salad.

If you prefer, top with sliced cooked chicken or turkey for an easy main dish.

2 tablespoons Greek Seasoning
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
1 head Romaine lettuce (or 8 cups mixed salad greens)
1 medium cucumber, peeled, halved, seeded and sliced
1/2 cup Kalamata or black pitted olives, sliced
1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1/2 medium red onion, cut into rings

Blend together Greek seasoning, lemon juice, vinegar and oil in a small bowl.
Gently stir in cheese. Refrigerate 15 minutes or longer.

Meanwhile, wash, dry and tear lettuce or salad greens into bite-size pieces.

Place lettuce and vegetables in a large bowl.

Just before serving, stir dressing; pour over salad. Toss to coat.
Garnish with onion slices and extra feta cheese, if desired.
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Greek Spinach & Feta Cheese Pie - (Spanakopita)

(Makes: 8 Servings)

1 1/4 lb spinach leaves, stemmed
2 medium onions
1/2 lb. feta cheese
5 eggs
6 Tbsp. olive oil
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill or 1- 1/2 tsp. dried
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
1/4 heavy cream
2 - 9 oz. pkgs. puff pastry or 1 pkg. filo dough
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400 F.
Wash spinach thoroughly, drain briefly and cook in a covered pan with no extra water for a few minutes, until wilted and tender.
As soon as spinach is cool enough to handle, squeeze out all excess moisture and chop very finely.

Peel and chop onions. Finely chop or crumble feta cheese.
Beat 4 eggs lightly in a large mixing bowl with a pinch of salt and some freshly ground pepper.
Heat 6 Tbsp. oil in a saucepan and fry onion gently, until soft.
Add chopped spinach and a pinch of salt. Stir well.

Cover and cook gently for 5 minutes. Stir in dill and parsley and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring to allow any moisture to evaporate.
Remove from heat, stir in cream and leave to cool a little before stirring in eggs and cheese and adding more seasoning.

Place half of the sheets from the package, one at a time, one on top of the other, to line the baking tray and brush with melted butter or oil. Spread spinach and cheese mixture over pie shell and place the other 1/2 of pastry on top.

Pinch edges together firmly all the way around, or press with the tines of a fork to seal tightly.

Beat remaining egg and brush over surface of pastry to glaze.
Bake 20 minutes, or until pastry is puffed, crisp and golden.
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Greek Style Shrimp

(Makes: 2 Servings - Can Be Double Or Tripled)

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 28 ounce can Italian plum tomatoes, drained, chopped
1/3 cup dry white wine
1 teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled
3/4 pound uncooked medium shrimp, peeled, deveined
salt and freshly ground pepper

Heat oil in heavy large skillet over medium heat.
Add onion and saute until translucent, about 8 minutes.
Add tomatoes, wine and oregano. Simmer until thickened, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.
Add shrimp and stir until opaque, 3 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper.
Serve with rice.
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Greek Style Leg Of Lamb

For The Roast You Will Need:
1 leg of lamb (the size depends on how many guests you are inviting)
2 Fresh lemons
6 cloves of garlic
3 sprigs of fresh rosemary
2 tablespoons cooking oil or lard
1 tablespoon ordinary flour
1 cup dry white wine
Salt and black pepper

Use a thin, sharp knife to ,make four incisions on both sides of the leg.
Half the lemons.
Peel and cut the garlic in half, lengthwise.
Pick a few rosemary petals loose from the sprigs.
In each incision squeeze a little of the lemon, put in a sliver of garlic and a rosemary petal.
Use the left over lemon to rub over the leg.
Rub the leg with salt, pepper and flour.
Pour the oil into a roasting pan or dish.
Pre-heat the oven to 160C (325F).
Place meat on roasting pan.
Quarter the second lemon and place the quarters around the lamb.
Pour the wine into the roasting pan.
Put roasting pan in oven and place the rosemary sprigs on top of the meat.

Open a bottle of wine and pour yourself a glass.
Turn on the music, put your feet up and relax for an hour.
Check the meat and baste it with the pan juices and dont worry if the lemon pieces are burnt and black, they are just there to give flavour and you are going to discard at the end.
Have some more wine and read for another hour, then go and check the meat.
By now it should have browned nicely and the meat should be tender and juicy.
Prick the meat with a large fork.
The liquid should be pinkish or clear, indicating that the meat is done.
If the liquid is too bloody for your taste leave it to roast for another 30 minutes or so.
Remove the leg from the oven and place it out of the way to rest for 10-15 minutes before carving it.
Remove and discard the lemon pieces and pour off most of the oil and fat in the roasting pan.
Add a little warm water to the pan, heat and scrape all the bits and pieces from the bottom of the pan.
Dont shudder this is simple, easy cooking, so you are permitted to add a little Bisto and/or a little Marmite/and/or a dash of Worcestershire sauce, black pepper and salt (and even a tot of brandy, if it appeals to you!)
Bring pan juices to the boil and reduce by one-third.
Taste and season if necessary.Carve the meat and serve the gravy separately.

Lovely with roast potatoes and plain green vegetables OR you can serve it with bread, rice, cauliflower and cheese, sweet potatoes in honey and cinnamon and green beans cooked with onion, bacon and potato.
Enjoy the lamb!
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Green Beans & Potatoes In Olive Oil

2 pounds fresh green beans
1 large onion, grated
4 potatoes
4 ripe tomatoes or 1 can peeled, chopped tomatoes
a little grated garlic
2 teaspoons parsley, finely chopped
salt, pepper
pinch of sugar

Clean and wash beans thoroughly.
Heat the oil in a pot and saute the onion.
Add the remaining ingredients except the potatoes, along with a little water, let simmer for 20 minutes, then add the potatoes that have been cut into quarters.
If necessary add a little more water and cook until well done. Serve lukewarm.
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8 ounces lean minced lamb
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 small onion, finely chopped
Cucumber and Yogurt Sauce
1 medium tomato, sliced
1/2 small onion, thinly sliced
2 pita pocket breads, slit on edges

Lightly oil a heavy based frying pan.
Mix together the onion and garlic and fry gently until soft.

Put the minced lamb in a mixing bowl, add the onion mixture together with the oregano, cumin and lemon juice then mix thoroughly.

Divide the mixture into two and shape into patties Cook the patties under a preheated grill for about 8 to 10 minutes or until the meat is cooked.

Carve the patties into thin slices and serve in pita pockets with the onion, tomato and cucumber sauce.
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7 ounces chickpeas
2 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 teaspoon pepper
1/3 teaspoon cumin
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons tahini (sesame paste)
3 tablespoons water
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

The previous evening place the chickpeas in a bowl of water to soak.
The next day boil until tender. Drain and leave to cool.

In a deep bowl dissolve the tahini in the water.
Place the chickpeas in a blender or food processor and while processing add the salt, the tahini, garlic, pepper, olive oil and the lemon juice.

Continue processing until the mixture has a creamy texture. Serve cold, sprinkled with paprika and garnished with finely chopped parsley.

Serve with Pita bread, crackers or fresh cut veggies.
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Hummus Tahini - (Sesame Spread)

(Makes: About 2 Cups)

1 can (15 oz.) garbanzo beans, drained
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup tahini paste
3 tablespoons chopped green onion
2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
2 garlic cloves, peeled
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Parsley sprigs or cilantro for garnish
Lavosh (cracker bread) or pita bread, quartered

Place the beans in a blender or food processor with the lemon juice, tahini, onion, parsley, cumin, and garlic.
Add salt and pepper and blend again.
Turn into a bowl, cover and chill.
When ready to serve garnish with a wreath of parsley or cilantro.
Spread on lavosh or pita bread.
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Kalamarakia - (Fried Calamari)

(Makes: 4 Servings)

700 gr. Squid
juice of 1 lemon
vegetable oil, for deep-frying
a little oregano
60 g flour

Prepare the squid, rinse them, and drain in a colander for 1 hour.
Mix the flour with salt in a plate, and add half of the pieces of squid, but leave the tentacles for the end.

Turn them in the flour, then lift a few pieces up at a time, shake excess flour off and drop them in the hot oil.

Make sure that oil is not too hot (about 350 grades F / 80 grades C is the right temperature.

When they turn a nice golden color lift them out with a slotted spoon.
At the end sprinkle with the lemon juice, some oregano, and serve immediately.

These squid should always be fried just before they are to be eaten and should not be re-fried or re-heated!
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Keftedakia - (Greek Meatballs)

1 Pound Ground Beef
1/2 Cup Onion, finely minced
3 Cloves Garlic, finely minced
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 Teaspoon Oregano
1/8 Teaspoon Mint
1-2 Slices white bread
1/2 Cup Dry white wine or water
1 Egg
Flour for rolling
vegetable oil for frying

Mix meat, onion, garlic, salt, pepper, oregano and mint.
Remove the crusts from the sliced bread and moisten in wine or water.
Add bread and egg to meat mixture and knead until well mixed.
Shape into 1" balls, dust with flour and saut in hot vegetable oil.
When meatballs are cooked and browned on all sides, place immediately in a casserole dish and keep covered to keep warm until ready to serve.
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Keftedes (Greek Pork Meatballs)

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Makes: 30 to 35 Keftedes

The secret to great, juicy keftedes is to make the mixture as loose as possible, but still dense enough that the little meatballs will hold their shape when fried. It is common practice in various parts of Greece to add either grated tomato or milk, or both, to the mixture. The liquid adds the requisite moisture to the meat, and changes its color so that the finished keftedes have a light, pinkish tint when broken apart.

Frying the meatballs has its tricks, too. You actually don't need that much oil for this recipe, as the keftedes are panfried, not deep fried. What you will need is to pay attention to the oil. It should not be so hot that the keftedes burn on the outside but remain undercooked within.

3/4 pound ground pork
1 large red onion, minced or grated (about 1 cup)
1 large tomato, grated
2 tablespoons dried Greek mint
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup milk
1/4 to 1/2 cup plain bread crumbs, as needed
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour for dredging
Olive oil, for frying

Combine the ground pork and onion in a mixing bowl. Add the tomato, mint, salt, and pepper, and knead well for 3 minutes to combine. Pour in the milk and continue kneading until the liquid is completely absorbed. If the mixture is so loose that the keftedes do not retain their shape, add a few tablespoonfuls of plain fine bread crumb. Cover the mixing bowl and refrigerate the mixture for at least 1 hour or up to 6 hours, so that the flavors meld.

To form, season the flour with salt and pepper, and spread out on a large plate. Have a second, clean plate ready. Take a tablespoonful at a time of the meat mixture and form into a small ball, about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Roll in the flour and shake in the palm of your hand to remove the excess flour. Place the dredged meatball on the clean plate. Continue with the remaining mixture until all the meatballs are shaped.

To fry, heat about 1-inch of olive oil or other oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Using a tablespoon or small spatula, gently place as many meatballs as will fit in the pan without crowding. Fry them, turning once or twice so that all sides are browned. Remove, drain slightly on paper towels, and serve, either hot or at room temperature. The meatballs may be made several hours ahead and stored, covered, at room temperature.
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