Cod with eggplant and potatoes (Μπακαλιάρος με μελιτζάνες και πατάτες)

Cod with eggplant and potatoes (Μπακαλιάρος με μελιτζάνες και πατάτες)

Greek style fish and chips…with eggplant

There is something to be said for the thrill that comes with anticipation.  Like looking under the Christmas tree and seeing all of the gifts waiting to be opened.  Or carrying home the latest best-selling novel, imagining crawling into bed and cracking the spine.  Or marking “X”‘s on the calendar as you count down the days to your holiday.  Or opening up your refrigerator and seeing your fish soaking in cold water.  What joy!

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Eggplant BLT Sandwich

Eggplant BLT Sandwich

Eggplant steps up to create a meat-free way to enjoy a BLT 

Eggplant BLT Sandwich

 

We love bacon.  Like, we love bacon, a lot.  We grew up in a home where bacon was not really something that was featured prominently.  Breakfast was usually an egg fried in olive oil with a side of feta, some Greek yogourt (before it was all the rage), or toast topped with tomato and feta.  Bacon, when we had it, was usually enjoyed at a friend’s house, or after begging our parents to buy some when we tagged along at the grocery store.  Our love of bacon has allowed up to come up with neat ways to incorporate it into our own cooking, like when we used it to wrap up dates and feta.  These bite-sized mezes are so great they even had our parents wondering why they never thought to cook with bacon themselves.  Really!?

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Okra with cauliflower (Μπάμιες με κουνουπίδι)

Okra with cauliflower (Μπάμιες με κουνουπίδι)

A totally delightful way to prepare okra with cauliflower 

Okra with cauliflower (Μπάμιες με κουνουπίδι)

 

Oh, we’re gluttons for punishment.  Here we go again, posting a recipe that is sure to receive its fair share of hate, or at least, negative comments.  Like spanakorizo, fried liver, and sour trahana, okra is a divisive vegetable.  There tend to be two types of people in the okra world; those who love it, and those who believe that those who love it must suffer from a taste disorder (called ageusia if you want to be fancy).  But that’s a little simplistic.

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Pasta with Swiss chard and tomatoes

Pasta with Swiss chard and tomatoes

Summer flavours in a bowl of pasta

Pasta with Swiss chard and tomatoes

Pasta is our hero.  When we think the pantry is bare and there is nothing for supper, pasta is there.  When we find ourselves rushed and harried, pasta is there.  When we’ve had a difficult day and want to eat our comfort, pasta is there.  Whether it is a long slender spaghetti, a perfectly plump penne or a fancy farfalle, pasta has saved many a meals.

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Chili lime side stripe shrimp lettuce wraps

Chili lime side stripe shrimp lettuce wraps

Super easy lettuce wrapped shrimp

Chili lime side stripe shrimp lettuce wraps

 

So this is different!  We were recently provided with a review copy of The Great Shellfish Cookbook: From Sea to Table More than 100 Recipes to Cook at Home by Matt Dean Pettit from Penguin Random House Canada, and boy, were we excited.  First of all, we love seafood and shellfish…all of it!  Second, the idea of reviewing a cookbook, telling all of you what we thought of it and testing some of the recipes, frankly made us feel a little special.  But then, the uneasiness crept in.  What if this cookbook was awful?  What if we hated it? What if the recipes were boring and bland?  How would we navigate the ocean waters between being ethical and honest in our review while at the same time being respectful to a chef and publishing company that we clearly did not want to upset.  What were two blogging sisters to do?

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Vlita (Βλήτα ή βλίτα)

Vlita (Βλήτα ή βλίτα)

Vibrant vlita! Quick, easy and so very good!

Vlita (Βλήτα ή βλίτα)

 

When is the last time you had boiled spinach for supper? Or a plate piled high with steamed collard greens?  Not as a side to anything, but as the actual meal.  Like, that was the only thing on your plate.  Well, if you’re Greek, then the answer might be, earlier this afternoon.  And if you’re not Greek, then this type of pauper, bland meal might seem a little strange, and sad.  But trust us…it’s not!

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Spanakopita (Σπανακόπιτα)

Spanakopita (Σπανακόπιτα)

The quintessential Greek pie: Spanakopita with homemade phyllo 

Spanakopita (Σπανακόπιτα)

Spanakopita; the King (or Queen) of Greek cuisine.  We doubt that there is a food more loved than this.  Regardless of culinary and cultural background, and whether or not you grew up in a Greek household, you have probably heard of spanakopita.  The lucky amongst us will have also tasted it, and the most fortunate know how to make it on their own, so that it can be enjoyed whenever the craving hits.   Spanakopita is the reason Greek parents can’t relate to other parents when they say “You know how kids are!  We have to puree and sneak vegetables into everything…Jack and Jill won’t touch anything green!  Kids, right?!”  Wrong.  We think Jack and Jill just need to be offered a piece of spanakopita.

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Greek-style Cobb salad

Greek-style Cobb salad

The Cobbopoulos; a delicious, Greek-inspired, Cobb salad

Greek-style Cobb salad

 

This salad is satisfying in so many ways.  First, it delivers in flavour, with simple and fresh ingredients that come together in a delicious way.  Second, it manages to put a Greek spin on a classic salad making it, in our opinion at least, even better; feta and Kalamata olives tend to do that.  Finally, the presentation speaks to each of us, at different moments.  The initial plating, ordered and with each ingredient clearly in its place, satisfies the need for organization that one of us has.  When the salad gets tossed together to coat every little bit with the delicious dressing…well that’s organized chaos in a bowl, and hits home with the other one of us.

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Broiled chicken (Κότα ψητή)

Broiled chicken (Κότα ψητή)

Boiling then broiling gives the most delectable chicken!

Some things in life make no logical sense, and yet still seem to work.  This recipe is an example of that. Reading through the directions which follow you would assume that the chicken, which is boiled twice and then broiled, would end up over-cooked and dry; certainly not something worth writing about.  But, you would be wrong.  Despite the somewhat unusual cooking method and minimal seasoning, you end up with a meal which is delicious, tender and definitely worth posting about.

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