Count Broccula's veg-head ramblings

My home experiments with vegetarian cooking. Focused on seasonal produce with some vegan stuff thrown in for good measure. I may include random other food-related stuff as I please.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Greek week!

Monday is almost always pizza day around here. I made Greek-za this week -- our normal pizza with a little bell pepper and feta and a lot of Greek olives added. I also really jazzed up the tomato sauce with the oil I had used to cook some garlic cloves. But pizza is pizza, right?

Last night I made spanakopita. I used a Cooking Light recipe, more or less, because I know it can be a very fattening dish. The main difference is using cooking spray instead of butter between the sheets of phyllo. It doesn't affect the texture, but it doesn't have the same rich, buttery taste. It made up for it, though, with the addition of sun-dried tomatoes. I based my dish on this recipe, with just a few changes.

First, I didn't like the idea of rice in the dish, so I used just a cup of low-fat ricotta. I also doubled the spinach, since I freaking love spinach. Instead of one big strudel, I made three medium-sized ones. It came out great! The crust was nice and flaky, the tomatoes had a nice tart, chewy texture, and there was spinach for days!

I also served a Greek salad on the side. My friend Althea gave me her recipe, which was sort of a suggestion rather than amounts, so I'll give you the same...

Cucumber, tomatoes, red onion, big chunks of feta, black olives, capers (if you like them). Mix oil and vinegar for the dressing (I used good olive oil and cider vinegar, and I tend to go heavy on the vinegar). Black pepper.

She didn't suggest any herbs, but I had some fresh flat-leaf parsley, and I thought it might be a nice addition. I leave the veggies in pretty big pieces, more than one bite each. I actually added just a little salt to the dressing (1/2 tsp?), but you wouldn't have to. The feta and olives provided plenty of salty flavor. (I used kalamata, but you could use black olives.)

Tomorrow night I'm doing avgolemono (lemon and rice or orzo soup), and Friday I think it's a big mezze platter. Althea suggested I try a green bean dish, and I may, but it will depend on how much time and work I'm putting into everything else. I try pretty hard to get dinner on the table quickly, and I certainly don't want my family to starve while we're waiting for green beans to cook.



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