Something like ice-cream then

The fact that something is frozen, looks like Ice Cream and it tastes like Ice Cream does not mean that it actually is Ice-Cream.. 

You see in order to give a dessert that name it has to abide by some rules. Those rules dictate the fat content in the dessert, what is the origin of this fat and also that dessert it needs to have a specific amount of air inside it. Up to 100%. Air makes ice cream fluffy and not dense but it also mean that you buy air... especially if the dessert is sold by volume and not weight... so you have to be careful about that.

Anyway.. with this I just wanted to tell you to be always mindful of the ingredients of anything that you buy... so make sure you check and see if you buy ice cream or frozen dessert...

About this recipe now.. technically it is not an ice cream because the fat is not from dairy products (well mainly at least). I was looking for a recipe that would have been easy to follow and easy to tinker.. And I found just that in a Donna Hay recipe.

Ingredients are simple and easy to find if you do not already have them in your pantry.. Great thing about it is that you can tweak it as you like. You can substitute almost anything for something else and that is always handy... Also you can add to it and make it even more special.. 

Let's see what we will need... 

Published in SWEETSTUFF

I love Lentil. A whole lot. And they are easy enough to make and very nutritional etc etc.. 

Always keep boiled lentil in small bags in the freezer so that I can use them in a salad in no time. 

But lately I started looking into sprouts more and lentil well they are a prime candidate for that. 

So, I know that sprouts are full of nutrients a lot more than the seeds they come from but did not know what happens when you boil them... 

Well, it turns out that a lot of the nutrients just remain after boiling.. and because the seeds become tender with sprouting you do not need to boil them as much as before. 

Also I found out that all legumes they contain phytic acid that makes them hard to digest. But sprouting gets rid of the phytic acid making the sprouted lentils a lot easier for the intestines. 

Another thing is that when you compare sprouted or not 

Μου αρέσουν πολύ οι φακές... Πολύ όμως.. τις θεωρώ πολύ εύκολο φαγητό να γίνουν.. εξαιρετικά θρεπτικές και γενικά μια υπερτροφή. 

Έχω πάντα βρασμένες σε μερίδες στην κατάψυξη για σαλάτες αλλά και χωρίς να έχεις βρασμένες και χωρίς μούλιασμα μπορείς να έχεις ένα γεύμα σε λίγες ώρες. 

Αλλά τελευταία ξεκίνησα να το ψάχνω λίγο περισσότερο με τις φύτρες... Και γενικά με τα όσπρια όταν βλαστάνουν.. 

Γενικά οι φύτρες είναι γεμάτες θρεπτικά συστατικά και βιταμίνες. Αλλά τι γίνεται όμως με το βράσιμο; διατηρούνται; αξίζει να μπούμε στη διαδικασία; 

Έκανα μια μικρή έρευνα και βρήκα τα εξής: 

Οι φακές όπως όλα τα όσπρια περιέχουν φυτικό οξύ που τις κάνει δύσπεπτες και πολλές φορές παραπονιόμαστε ότι μας τουμπανιάζουν, ότι κλάνουμε συνέχεια κτλ... Με το μούλιασμα λοιπόν και το φύτρωμα τους το φυτικό οξύ χάνεται κάνοντας τις φακές πολύ πιο εύκολες στην πέψη.

Επίσης το φύτρωμα τους αυξάνει τη διαθεσιμότητα τους σε βιταμίνες Β και D.. αυτό έχει ένα τεράστιο πλεονέκτημα και κάνει τα όσπρια ακόμα πιο θρεπτικά! 

Επίσης το φύτρωμα αυξάνει τις πρωτεΐνες τους κατά τουλάχιστον 10%.

Με το φύτρωμα μειώνουμε το χρόνο βρασμού στο μισό περίπου.

Αυξάνονται οι φαινόλες στο διπλάσιο. Οι φαινόλες είναι αντιοξειδωτικά που υπάρχουν και στο ελαιόλαδο για παράδειγμα. Αυτό έχει σαν αποτέλεσμα να βοηθάνε στη μείωση της κακής χοληστερίνης και του διαβήτη. 

Και τέλος αλλάζει τη γεύση τους και την υφή τους. Μπορούμε να φάμε τις φακές ωμές σε σαλάτα αλλά ακόμα και όταν τις βράζουμε έχουν μια εντελώς διαφορετική γεύση. Γίνονται πιο απαλές, αποκτούν μια γεύση σαν ξηρούς καρπούς και γενικά είναι σαν να τις έχουμε ανεβάσει μια σκάλα. 

Αρνητικά δεν υπάρχουν καθόλου στη διαδικασία. Το μόνο που μπορούμε να πούμε είναι ότι απλά αυξάνουμε το χρόνο κατά δυο μέρες πράγμα που σημαίνει ότι αν θέλουμε να τις φυτρώσουμε πρέπει να το προγραμματίσουμε λίγο.. 

Εγώ προσωπικά τρελάθηκα με τη γεύση και είναι ο μόνος τρόπος που θα τρώω τις φακές από εδώ και πέρα. Θα το δοκιμάσω και με τα ρεβίθια σίγουρα αλλά και με τα φασόλια. 

Να πω επίσης ότι το δοκίμασα με τις υπέροχες φακές από το δικότυλο και μάλιστα ήταν και προπέρσινες.. Έχω να πω ότι βλάστησαν όλες πράγμα που σημαίνει πόσο καλή δουλειά κάνουν τα παιδιά με την καλλιέργειά τους. 

Ας δούμε λοιπόν τις λεπτομέρειες.. 

Published in NO MEAT

Am so lucky.. Really feel blessed at times because I can do my job which is something that I love, work with nice people and taste incredible products. 

In this receipe there are products that the people who make them share the same madness about what they like me. So obviously this dish turned out stellar. 

In this day and age of global market and anonymity it is wonderful to be able to source the food that enters your body and consciously feed yourself not just from the nutrients that are in it but also from the energy of the good people that was put in the production of this food. Love is everywhere and obviously in the food we make. 

In this recipe I am blessed to have a plethora of such people and products. Chickpeas from Dikotylo, the Swiss Chard comes from Christos Blandis in Marathon, the Pamako olive oil from Crete, the grape mast from Karagelis, the wine from the "dio fili" winery in Siatista.. 

Started the recipe late last night as I had bought some beutiful and quite cheap cookware from my local supermarket and it turned out a bliss. Here is the recipe for you


Published in NO MEAT-EN

I love persimmons. 

Not so much that I believe that they taste great but I just love everything about them in a way. 

Most beautiful fruit tree for sure with bright orange leaves in Autumn and a great contrast between the grey wood and bring orange fruit on the naked tree in winter. 

I use them to make a wonderful cake but I never used them in a savory recipe before.. Well I did use them but not cooked anyway...

Then I thought how wonderful they would be together with a pumpkin in a soup...

I had a few but took them for ever to mature... and so I was waiting and waiting... and then finally they were ready and the soup turned out wonderful!  

Now that I rethink about the recipe maybe I should have roasted the fruit as well... 

Next time! 


Published in NO MEAT-EN

A wonderful French way of cooking artichokes! 

Cooked two ways in France. Barigoule is a type of mushroom and so in the old days the artichokes were stuffed with mushrooms and "caped" with a piece of bacon. They were braised in olive oil and then almost fried in the olive oil left in the pot. 

The second way, the more simple way, is the one I am using. It does not have mushrooms and in general it is a simpler recipe.

In Greece we have a pretty similar recipe for artichokes in Greece called "a la polita". It has lemon and they are braised as well. 

Of course if we do not add the bacon and butter at the end it is a vegan recipe. 

So, let's see what we will need! 


Published in NO MEAT-EN

Yet one more way to cook and serve artichokes and keep them for quite some time as well. 
And in this recipe I will show you a VERY easy way to process and remove all the hair and petals from the flower... Because artichokes are flowers... :-) Do not forget... 

This is a wonderful Meze type food to share with your friends over some wine or Tsipouro and I try to make a big bunch and keep it in the fridge for months.. 

As for removing the stamen etc it is really easy.. You peel off the outer petals but keep the tender ones and also the stamen. 

You steam them.. In the water underneath the steamer you can add aromatics, herbs etc for extra punch. I used some fennel fronts and also lemon.

Let's see what we will need!  


Published in NO MEAT-EN

I have an issue with vegan food…Or rather the issue is not so much with the food but with the people who follow this diet because in many instances they are simply ‘food fashion victims’ and not fully consciously aware of the implications of the diet that they are following.

Why do I mention this? Because after many discussions with people who identify as vegan, when I tell them that traditional Greek cuisine is mostly vegan they look at me as if I were crazy.

And then I start to talk to them about the ‘ladera’ (vegetables cooked in oil), the wonderful traditional dishes we have with vegetables as well as the less well known dishes such as ‘kolokithokorfades’  (courgette flowers) the wonderful pickled dishes and all the rest and they tell me “ that’s..yucky”

Why don’t they like the traditional Bean Stew? It just isn’t trendy for them. That’s where they are missing out.

Recently however in the past few years things have improved somewhat and I see young people are starting to enjoy the traditional recipes, and actually use them and experiment with them.

Because, it’s great to have quinoa and millet but I would prefer not to have the enormous carbon foot print that goes with their importation. Also one other really great thing is that they are starting to bring out great vegan recipe books now.

I had been talking for years to two well known Greek chefs telling them to bring out a book with really tasty vegan recipes, that they would sell really well and in the end one made an attempt..I wonder if he remembered whose idea it was :-) I doubt it, but OK….

One of my favourite female chefs that does vegetarian recipes as well as vegan is Amy Chaplin.. Australian, but world renowned, I have eaten her food in New York at the wonderful restaurant Angelica’s Kitchen and I adored her and her style and everything about her.

I had guests on Sunday and I wanted to make something special.

As I hadn’t eaten any pulses for ages I wanted to have some beans in it. I remembered a recipe of her’s which I had seen for tartlets and I thought it would work as a whole tart and make it my own with a few changes.

It came out wonderfully and perfectly great!

The friends who tried it were blown away especially when I told them it had beans in it and I told them that I would give it to my brother without telling him what was in it.. I use him often as a guinea pig but I always give him great food and he never complains..

Just as he had not been able to make out what was in my vegan ‘soutsoukakia” recipe the other day (banana skin) he couldn’t work out what was in the tart..He loved it though..

I should add that I used wonderful beans for the tart from dikotilo the wonderful vanilla ones and the beetroot with which I decorated the tart were from the wonderful Irini.

So let’s see this wonderful and colourful recipe which I am sure you will be enthusiastic about as it is so different!

And if your kids don’t eat beans try this!

Published in NO MEAT-EN

So, I had gathered some wild Greens from the garden and wanted to do something with them. They were not a lot to boil and have them as a salad on their own. 
Then I thought to make an omelet using them but had no eggs.. 

Maybe a risotto I thought but wanted something more starchy, more comfort, like bread or pasta.. 
An then it hit me. Why not make home made pasta just with semolina flour.. Most of the dry pasta that we buy at the super market are just semolina and nothing else. 

So I gave it a try.. the simplest thing ever!!! and was sooo much fun making it! 

The dough needs some kneading but it is good exercise and so it was soooo worth it. 
Made a great sauce with the Greens and some walnuts and the whole thing was to die for! 

Give it a try! especially with your kids helping you... 

Oh! and since i did not have wooden piece of wood with the grooves that the Italian use to make their Garganelli I used a wooden stamp that we use to stamp the bread that we make as an offering to take to church... So I guess it is not holly pasta.. :-) 



Published in PASTA - RICE-EN
April 30, 2020

Pumpkin Hummus

So, I have made some hummus for you in the past, but that one was a bit out there since it had fish in it. 

So, because I roasted the pumpkin the other day and turned it into a puree I thought about using some of it and make another interesting Hummus.

It is one of the best snacks for me and especially great to have in front of the TV while watching a movie scooping it into one's mouth with some veggies or maybe a nice rusk. 

Very easy recipe, as I have some boiled chickpeas always in the freezer from the Feneos area in Greece in portions and also the wonderful puree of Irini's pumpkin and so in a few hours I can make this delicious dish with no trouble. 

Does not need too many more ingredients. Some Tahini, lemon, olive oil, spices and a food processor.. 

The pumpkin in this recipe gives it a beautiful freshness and makes it lighter than usual. Especially for me as I do not really love Tahini.. 

Also it is a great vegan recipe for those of you that are looking for that... 

So let's see what we will need.



Published in NO MEAT-EN

I love it when you can use as much as possible from the food you have bought. Throw away almost nothing and use even the scraps. 

I love pumpkins and had bought more than a few from Irini. I had one left, and decided to roast it and keep it as a puree in the freezer as the days are getting warmer and did not want it to spoil. 

Also keeping the puree in the freezer in bags is very convenient and saves a ton of space. 

So roasting a pumpkin is very straightforward and does not need much.. Make sure that you do not use any salt as you can use the puree in a recipe for a dessert like those brownies I made recently and not to flavour it with many spices as it should be kept like a white canvas for you to play with in your recipes.

You can do something smart though and roast the pumpkin on a bed of an aromatic like sage. I have a lot growing in the garden and thought about giving it a go.. 

It gives a light flavor to the finished product even though you cannot really tell what you are tasting... you just feel that there is a second layer to the pumpkin taste but you cannot actually tell what it is... 

Also the seeds of the pumpkin you can use and turn them into a tasty snack. 

So, let's see what we will need. 



Published in NO MEAT-EN
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