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Ruth Bardis

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BEYOND THE GREEK SALAD

REGIONAL FOODS FROM ALL AROUND GREECE

This book explores foods Beyond the Greek Salad and is a follow up from Ruth’s Gourmand Awards Best in the World title, Hellenic Kanella: Memories Made in a Greek Kitchen. Offering over 90 recipes (half of them gluten-free), Ruth has documented recipes that enlarge one’s culinary horizon to what Greeks consume throughout the country and more specifically to each region. The book has recipes that are simple to prepare, heart healthy with the overabundance of extra-virgin olive oil, herbs, vegetables, seafood, and fruits. Comprising eight chapters, the book is divided by region, and each region begins with a synopsis of the region’s produce, with its history and prominent recipes to accompany thereafter. Ruth has captured and photographed Greece in a unique way, making this book a treasure not only to cook from but to have on one’s coffee table.

Delve into the pages of this book and be introduced to other local foods of Greece. Be tempted by culinary delights from every region of Greece—from the Ionian Islands, sofigado (beef stew with quince, petimezi, and rosemary), psari bianco (white fish with lemon emulsion), and Venetian pastitsio; from Northern Greece, bougatsa (custard pie), koulouria (sesame bread rings), and muhallebi (milk pudding); from the Peloponnese, makaronopita (spaghetti pie), hoirino me selino avgolemono (pork and celery stew), and aginares me araka (braised artichoke stew with baby peas); from Epiros, with its abundance of pies, galatopita (milk pie), alevropita ipirotiki (yogurt and cheese pie), saganaki (sesame-coated feta), and ladopita (spiced olive oil pie); from Crete, kalitsounia lihnarakia (vanilla pastries), sfakianes pites (ricotta pancakes), and herbal teas; from the Aegean Islands, Santorini’s ntomatokeftedes (tomato fritters), kakavia (fish soup in saffron and white wine), and revithia fournou me dentrolivano (baked chickpeas with rosemary), and htapodi stin skara; from Thessalía , halva farsalon (caramel jelly), plastos (cornmeal spinach pie), spetsofai (spicy stew with peppers, white wine, and sausage), spatoula karidopita me krema (spiced walnut cake with vanilla custard), and sousamopita (sesame pie); and from Central Greece, kormos (chocolate log with honey and orange), souvlaki, tahinopita baklava (spiced tahini baklava), pagoto halva kai gaourti (halva and yogurt ice creams), and many more.

Journey with Ruth through this intriguing collection of foods and pictures around Greece.

HELLENIC KANELLA

 

MEMORIES MADE IN A GREEK KITCHEN

Ruth’s parents immigrated to Australia from Greece seeking a better life.  A Greek at heart, Ruth desired to preserve her heritage by sharing her family’s stories and regional specialties of cuisine. Come along this delicious journey through the Peloponnese, Cephalonia, Elefsina and Northern Greece and enjoy Ruth’s beautiful photographs of her beloved Greece.

A well-stocked pantry ensures the reader is acquainted with Greek produce and the nutritional benefits of Mediterranean eating.  Her recipe chapters are divided into four parts: ‘Whetting the appetite’, ‘the saucepan and the pan’, ‘baked foods’ and ‘sweet endings’; easy to follow techniques and foods which have been tried and tested.

With over 80 recipes (half of which are gluten-free) Ruth has cooked, styled and captured a modern yet nostalgic depiction of her life.  Family linens, pictures and serving pieces decorate the pages of this book.  She has used the abundance of olive oil and spices to achieve authenticity in both main meals and desserts. From a plethora of authentic recipes inclusive of pastry making, pies, feta flat breads, pickled octopus, rabbit stew, yoghurt making, orange and pork sausages, fennel seed bread, vegetarian moussaka, stuffed tomatoes, okra with lamb, lima beans, cumin meat patties, squid with orzo this book will have you salivating.   Not to mention the array of desserts such as pumpkin pie, orange apricot semolina pudding, Easter bread, ouzo cookies, olive oil cake with orange blossom syrup, prune stuffed honey soaked biscuits, mouth-watering sesame salted pistachio rose water baklava, honey donuts, milk pie, spoon sweets and Greek coffee!

Segments of narrative are intertwined with recipes, all from a Greek heart!

SIMPLY MORE GREEK

 

FOODS FROM THE GARDEN THE SEA & THE BAKERY

This book is exactly what the title says, Simply More Greek.  It is a unique compilation of simple to prepare, classical foods eaten mostly in villages, towns, and monasteries throughout Greece, based on fresh produce from the garden, seafood from the vast surrounding sea, and baked pies and sweets. There are no meat dishes in this book.  Meat free meals are mostly consumed throughout the year in Greece due to the vast number of fasting days.  The meals chosen for this book are largely unfamiliar and absent from other Greek cookbooks. Such foods as pastitsio and stifado made with mushrooms, sardines wrapped in vine leaves, silver beet rolls stuffed with rice and herbs, stuffed onions with spices and pine nuts.  There are legumes with greens, seafood with raisins, octopus with honey, fresh salads and various dips.  Baked breads such as feta cheese and fennel bread rings, greens, cheese and other variety of pies and different ways to make pastry.  To end there is a selection of desserts such as rice pudding cake, apple cake with whiskey, pastry parcels with nuts, yogurt jelly cake, and plenty more.

The aim of this book is to aspire, educate, and discover more traditional foods.  It is written to entice the avid pescatarian, vegetarian or those wanting to eat more seafood, vegetables, and or, the person eager to open their horizon to more Greek meals, half of which are gluten free.  This book is divided into four main chapters and sub chapters.

Chapter one is based on the Garden and subdivided into three parts:  Fresh, cooked and accompaniments.  Here you will find recipes using fresh vegetables in their raw state, traditional meals that have been slow cooked, and meals used as meze or sides. 

Chapter two is wholistically seafood recipes.  It is a rich compilation of tasteful recipes derived from the abundance of seafood Greece has to offer. 

Chapter three is home to the Bakery.  Divided into Savoury and Sweet, these recipes showcase the wonders of Greek pies, and various filo pastries made from scratch.  One whole chapter has been written to entice both the novice and experienced home cook to delve into making thin, crispy pies with several techniques and fillings. A chapter that will surely draw one to want to add this book to their collection with its easy and comprehensive tips for homemade pastry making.    The Sweet bakery contains traditional sweets that are not necessarily published in most Greek cookbooks.  They have been selected to expand one’s knowledge of other sweets eaten throughout Greece.

The final chapter is titled ‘The Garden and its Nutrients’.  A summary of the generally consumed herbs, fruits and vegetables used throughout the book and from a Greek garden.  A description of each plant, when to culture and grow, and a list of health benefits are described.

This book has been wonderfully photographed with eye catching food pictures and places throughout Greece.  This book is not only a cookbook but a coffee table book to also peruse away from the kitchen.