Our Recipes

June 2017

Fresh Artichoke Salad – Aginarosaláta

Artichokes, which grow in abundance in the Cretan countryside in spring, feature in floral motifs on Minoan frescoes. INGREDIENTS
  • 5-6 young tender artichokes, quartered
  • 3 lemons
  • olive oil
  • vinegar
METHOD Wash the artichokes cut into pieces and put in a bowl of water. Add the juice of two lemons to prevent discoloration. Cut the remaining lemon in half and rub the surfaces of the artichokes. SERVING SUGGESTION Place on a plate and serve with salt, oil, a little lemon or vinegar. Serves 4

Cretan Dakos Koukouvágia (Owl)

  • 5-6 small barley rusks (dakos)
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 piece feta cheese
  • 2-3 tbs olive oil
  • salt
  • onion
  • oregano
METHOD Wet the rusks and dry with a clean towel. Grate the tomato and feta and spread on the rusks. Add the oil, salt, oregano and (optional) a little grated onion. SERVING SUGGESTION Decorate with olive halves. Serves 4

Stuffed Courgette Flowers – Kolokythanthí

The ancient Greeks would thank the gods for a good harvest with an offering of 'panspermia,' a dish of mixed beans and pulses. INGREDIENTS
  • 20 courgette flowers
  • 150 gr white rice (glace)
  • 2 ssp dill, finely chopped
  • 1 ssp mint, finely chopped
  • 30 gr onion, grated
  • 30 gr carrot, grated
  • 30 gr courgette, grated
  • 30 gr tomato, grated
  • 200 gr potatoes, sliced
  • 2 pinches salt
  • 2 pinches pepper
  • 200 ml olive oil
  • 100 ml fresh lemon juice
METHOD Place the courgette flowers in cold water to open and make the preparation easier. In a large mixing bowl place the rice, all the chopped and grated ingredients and half of the olive oil. Mix well. With a small spoon, take small amounts of the stuffing and fill the courgette flowers. Fold over the ends to seal the stuffing inside. Place on the bottom of a saucepan with the openings towards the bottom. Pour in enough water to cover. Add 1 pinch of salt, 1 pinch pepper, 1/2 of the lemon juice. Cover and simmer gently for approx. 30 minutes until the rice has absorbed all the liquid. SECRET OF SUCCESS Place the potato slices at the bottom of the pan so that the stuffed courgette flowers do not stick or split open during cooking. Place a plate (upside down) on top of the stuffed courgette flowers before cooking so that the parcels cannot rise or move. Serves 4

Octopus with Fennel

Crowns of mint were worn at religious ceremonies and sprigs used to scent bath water. Athletes used crushed mint leaves to relieve soreness after games. Mint eases indigestion and helps relieve nausea. Octopus with Fennel - Htapódi me máratho INGREDIENTS
  • 1 kg fresh octopus or 2-3 smaller ones
  • 240 ml dry red wine
  • 3-4 tbs olive oil
  • 1 bunch wild fennel, leaves and stalks, coarsely chopped or
  • 2 fennel bulbs, finely sliced
  • 1ó cup flat-leaved parsley, chopped
  • 2-3 cup cracked green olives (Cretan)
METHOD If you buy a frozen octopus, simply defrost it, wash it and then boil it in a covered, nonstick saucepan over low to medium heat without adding any water. If it’s fresh, have the fishmonger clean it. Fresh or frozen, it will cook in its own juice, but if it stops exuding liquid before becoming tender, pour in a little of the wine. Watch the pan carefully as it will reabsorb its liquid. Add wine whenever the pan appears to be drying. When the octopus is tender, remove it from the saucepan, allow to cool and cut into bite-sized pieces, removing the eyes and beak. Add the oil to the saucepan, gently sauté the fennel and parsley for a few minutes before you return the octopus pieces with the rest of the wine. Simmer until you have thick sauce. Stir in the olives and cook another 10 minutes. TIP You can use squid instead of octopus. Vary the cooking times accordingly. Serves 4 The octopus was a popular motif on Minoan pottery.

Grouper with Okra

Before electricity and refrigeration, monasteries preserved fish by frying it olive oil and dressing it in with a sauce of home-made vinegar and rosemary. Grouper with Okra - Rofós me bámies INGREDIENTS
  • 1 kg okra, washed
  • 240 ml strained lemon juice for fish and the okra
  • 1 kg whole fish, preferably grouper, scaled and cleaned
  • salt
  • pepper, freshly ground
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 6 tbs olive oil
  • 750 gr tomatoes, skinned & grated
  • 3 tbs parsley, chopped
Method Trim the tips pf the okra, if desired and toss them in a bowl with 1-2 tablespoons salt and 120 ml (1/2 cup) of lemon juice. Set them aside (in the sun, if possible, or in a very slow oven) for 1-2 hours. Marinate the fish in another bowl with the rest of the lemon juice, salt and pepper and refrigerate until 30 minutes before cooking. Sauté the onions and garlic in the oil until soft and translucent, then add the okra, tomatoes and pepper and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes, stirring in the chopped parsley at the very end. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 190o C (375o F) and lightly oil a baking pan large enough to hold the fish. When the vegetables have released some of their liquid, line the pan with half of them, place the fish on top, and cover the fish with the rest of the vegetables. Bake for about 1 hour or until the fish flakes easily and is cooked close to the backbone. Serves 4

Rabbit with Onions

Byzantine emperors used bay leaves to enhance the body of red wines. Rabbit with Onions - Stifádo INGREDIENTS
  • 2.5-3 kg rabbit (or hare)
  • 3 kg small pickling onions
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 1 bowl finely chopped tomatoes
  • 2-3 cloves garlic
  • 1 glass red wine
  • 1 cup olive oil
METHOD Wash and cut the rabbit into portions. Peel the onions and stick a clove into some of them. Sauté the meat in hot oil and add the onions. Cover the pan for a few minutes and then add the glass of red wine. Add the tomato, bay leaves, salt, pepper and 2 cups of water. Simmer for about an hour. SERVING SUGGESTION Serve with fried potatoes. Serves 4

Snails in Tomato Sauce

A favorite Cretan dish is deep-fried (boubouristous) snails – a name inspired by the loud sizzle of moist snails tossed into hot oil. Snails in Tomato Sauce - Hohlií INGREDIENTS
  • 1 kg large snails
  • 4-5 tomatoes
  • 4 onions
  • 500 gr small zucchini
  • 300 gr potatoes, cut in four pieces
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup vinegar
  • 3 sprig rosemary
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • salt & pepper
METHOD Place the snails in a bowl of water to soften the outside and then scrape clean the shells. Rinse well and leave to drain. Heat the oil in a pan and sauté the onions and garlic. Add the tomatoes, vinegar, rosemary, salt, pepper and 1 cup of water. Simmer for about 10 min before adding the snails. Cook for a further hour. Serves 4

Boureki – Kolokythobúreko

Courgettes and a soft white cheese are the basic ingredients of boureki, a dish to which all cooks add their own special touches. INGREDIENTS
  • 1 kg courgettes
  • 1 kg potatoes
  • 1/2 kg feta cheese
  • 3 cups olive oil
  • mint leaves
  • fresh cream
  • salt & pepper
  • pastry sheets (fyllo)
  METHOD Slice the courgettes and potatoes, season with salt & pepper and coat in flour. Spread the pastry sheets in a baking dish and place a layer of courgettes on top, adding crumbled feta cheese, mint and oil. Arrange a layer of potatoes on top, continuing with alternate layers of courgettes and potatoes. Finally pour over the fresh cream and bake in the oven for about 1 1/2 hours. Serves 4

The following abbreviations have been used in the recipes:

tspteaspoon5 gr
sspsoupspoon10 gr
tbstablespoon15 gr
cupliquid e.g. honey140 gr
cuprice / sugar200 gr
cupbutter220 gr
cupcheese (grated)120 gr
cupnuts (chopped)150 gr
oz / pintsml
5 (1/4 pint)150
10 (1/2 pint)275
20 (1 pint)570
25 (11/4 pint)725
13/4 pints1 litre