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Kalamata Olive Tapenade: Four Recipes

Kalamata Olive Tapenade: Four Recipes

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Hello beautiful people!! Geia Sas from California to the world. I am happy to bring you all four recipes in one post.

This post is all about one of my favorite ingredients: Kalamata olives!! Lucky me I had a huge container of olives from Costco in my fridge, and really wanted to make something unique with them. I was tired of just putting them in my Greek salad. :P

Lately we have had an abundance of beautiful fresh garden vegetables laying around. I thought why not incorporate that into one of the three recipes, or maybe all four. I hope you enjoy this post as I had much fun making it. Cheers~

Kalamata Olive Tapenade Recipe

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Ingredients:

  • 5 cups Kalamata olives
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • 1 lemon (juice)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tablespoon thyme
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • Pinch red pepper
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • 5 cup lady fingers or cherry tomatoes
  • Fresh mint to serve

Method:

  1. In a food processor combine all ingredients except tomatoes.
  2. Pulse until ingredients are well combined.
  3. Scoop out tomato seeds and cut in half.
  4. Add to mix and chill for about 2 hours so flavors can combine.
  5. Serve over crackers, pita bread and more.

Kalamata Olive Orzo Salad Recipe

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Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups crumbled Feta cheese
  • 1 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 cup chopped yellow bell pepper
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons Kalamata olive tapenade
  • 4 green onions, diced
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 lemon, reserve juice
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

Method:

  1. Cook orzo in large pot of boiling salted water, according to the packaged instructions. Drain water, and set orzo in a large bowl and toss with half olive oil. Prepare the vegetables, and then add vegetables, and feta.
  2. In a small bowl combine the Kalamata spread, vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic and herbs. Add dressing to orzo mixture, and season with sea salt and ground pepper.
  3. Cover and refrigerate for 5 hours or leave overnight. Garnish with fresh mint and serve.

Creamy Greek Kalamata Cheese Spread Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 5 Tablespoons Kalamata Olive Tapenade
  • 1/2 cup cream cheese
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Method:

  1. In a food processor add the Kalamata olive tapenade, garlic, parsley, basil, and olive oil. Mix to combine.
  2. Add mix to a medium bowl, and add cream cheese. Chill for two hours so the flavors can combine.
  3. Pair with pita chips, pita bread, or a good mix of wheat crackers. This spread is wonderful in Mediterranean wraps.

Kalamata Olive Tapenade Dakos: Cretan Bruschetta Mezes

A tradition on the island of Crete. Dakos is very similar to bruschetta, except it is served over a hard rusk like bread. This recipe is very easy to make, and I guarantee you will have your guests at your dinner table enjoying this.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 of a large round rusk, or you can use crusty country bread toasted.
  • 1/4 cup of Kalamata olive tapenade
  • 3 teaspoons of Feta cheese or Myzithra
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Greek oregano
  • Sea salt & Cracked pepper
  • Fresh mint to serve

Method:

  1. Moisten the rusks under a bit of water, and set aside. (If you are using country wheat bread, do not moisten them. Toast them in the oven/ toaster until golden brown.)
  2. Spread the Kalamata tapenade over the top of the bread and top with cheese.
  3. Serve with extra virgin olive oil and oregano over the top.

Kali Orexi

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A Dragon’s Loyalty Award

Kouzounas Kitchen:

Yay we were nominated for the Dragon’s Loyalty Award! Thank you very very much to my friend over at @Cookswithevie for the nomination. I will be sharing our answers and nominees this coming week. Have a beautiful week to come!
-Kouzounas Kitchen

Originally posted on cookswithevie:

We received this award last weekend and I has taken me until now to get on the computer to accept it.  Many thanks to Natascha for this.  Natascha is so sweet and I am happy to have “met” her.  She also makes a lot of very delicious looking food, so stop by her blog if haven’t already and have a look for yourselves.

The Rules for accepting this award are:

1. Display the certificate on your website.

2. Announce with a post linking back to whomever presented you with the award.

3. Present the award to 15 bloggers that you think are deserving.

4. Send them a comment letting them know.

5. And the hard part (for me) list 7 interesting things about yourself.

Of course you are not obligated to participate and I understand if you cannot.

Here goes, 7 slightly interesting things about me:

1. I am a…

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When You Aren’t In Greece: Make Your Own Vegetarian Gyro Pita

How many of you have had those moments of reminiscing the beaches in Greece, drinking a ice cold frappe, and enjoying those gyro pitas?? (Well of course those who have visited Greece have.) :)

For some odd reason, today I was craving a chicken gyro pita super bad, but didn’t have any chicken. So a light bulb popped in my head, and I said VEGETARIAN it is. Here you go Vegetarian lovers: A super Vegetarian gyro pita just for you.

Greek LingoΠΙΤΑ ΓΥΡΟ: Pita Gyro:( YEE-ro) Not hero, not Jiro, and please not a girooo. Simply Yee-ro. Bravo now you know how to say it correctly.

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Vegetarian Gyro Pita Recipe Brought To You By Kouzounas Kitchen

Ingredients:

  • 1 pita bread ( I am very picky with what bread I use, but today I used the brand Western Bagels Whole Wheat Pita Bread.
  • If you would like to make your own pita head over to this link and check out my recipe. >>> http://kouzounaskitchen.com/2014/06/24/traditional-pita-bread-recipe/
  • 1 zucchini- thin slices.
  • 1 large tomato- thin slices
  • 1/4 cup Feta cheese
  • 1 Pinch oregano
  • 2 Tablespoons Hummus Dip or Tzatiki Dip ( I made my own hummus. Follow the recipe here>> http://kouzounaskitchen.com/2014/04/16/preparing-for-greek-easter/
  • 1 Lemon – Reserve the juice

Method:

  1. Saute the zucchini in a pan with light olive oil until the zuchinni is golden brown on each side. Set aside.
  2. Prepare the tomato, and dip.
  3. Prepare the pita bread. Spread the dip over the pita, and layer with tomato, zucchini slices, feta cheese, and lemon juice. Sprinkle oregano over the top. Carefully fold the pita together, and if you need to wrap in parchment paper.

Kali Orexi!

Meet The Belly Rules The Mind

 
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When did you start your blog?
October 2014

What is your favorite cuisine?

 
I love trying different cuisines, however my favorite cuisine is Indian as I am a bit partial to it due to my Indian background.
 What is your favorite recipe on your blog?
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This is my favorite recipe on the blog. I started my blog by making my favorite fried food items in an apple pan, also know as (Aebeleskiver Pan} a healthier way of preparing non fried items.

 Blog Name/ Blog Link?

http://thebellyrulesthemind.net 

What are two of your favorite recipes? 

I have a serious sweet tooth for baklava.

**I included a very unique twist on the traditional Greek tzatziki dip. This recipe is called:

Avocado Tzatziki Recipe

~ This is for all my sweet greek friends at Foodify. It’s a amazing group!!  I should say in advance, this is NOT authentic. This is my twist to the tzatziki sauce. It’s not traditional tzatziki because I replaced the yogurt with avocado.
At first I was worried about the texture and taste but in the end the sauce came out so thick and creamy!
No matter how you prepare the chicken recipe above, just make sure you include the dip!
It’s the Superstar of the show!
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Ingredients:
  • 2 Avocado/pitted/mashed
  • 1 green onion
  • 2 small cucumber/ grated
  • salt to taste
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp Greek seasoning mix
Method:
In a blender , add avocado,green onion.
Process until smooth. Add in the herbs , lemon juice , grated cucumber crank in some fresh black pepper.
Pour into a bowl and refrigerate until ready to eat. Serve it with grilled veggies/ chicken.
Butter chicken would be my next fav recipe. My family loves it the way I make it. Although,  I don’t have it on my blog ..hence the next best butter chicken recipe. :)

Two Favorite Chefs?

 I got the passion for preparing food from my mom, hence one of my favorite chefs is my mom.

Where do you currently reside?

We live in Virginia, USA.

FOR YUMMY RECIPES FROM THE BELLY RULES THE MIND VISIT AT >>> thebellyrulesthemind.net
Thank you to Soniya for the wonderful recipes and great interview. I can’t wait to try your Avocado Tzatziki Dip.
Keep in mind that this blog is made up of three amazing food bloggers who came together and started “The Belly Rules The Mind.” Check out more information on the three of them at >>> The Belly Rules The Mind. 
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Meet Christine It

Please give a warm welcome to Christine It. All the way from Canada, and coming at you with some yummy recipes. Get to know Christine below. I was lucky enough to interview her, and ask her a few foodie qs. Thank you Christine for being a part of this great post. 10436259_489932244490124_3457019635628804171_n
How did you start your blog?
 I started my blog in October of 2014.  I had started with FB first over a year before this, and a lot of my foodie friends encouraged me to start a blog.
Favorite cuisine?
Greek (of course)
 Favorite recipe?  
That’s a tough one…I love pizzas, so all of them but I really like my “Spanakotiropizza”. Oh,
and chicken.
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The Greek Rotisserie Chicken is my fav.
**For those without a rotisserie BBQ Greek Chicken Breast
 Another favorite recipe to share. >>> Yemista
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Favorite Chef?
 I don’t really have a favourite chef…I love watching cooking shows.
Where do you currently reside?  
Ontario, Canada

For great recipes from Christine It please follow her recipes at >>> http://christineitup.blogspot.ca/ 

She is on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Google +,  Youtube and more.
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Meet CyTasty

 I was lucky enough to be able to interview a dear friend and one of my top admins in the Foodify group. I asked each food blogger to answer some questions about their blogs and their passions. Please give a warm welcome to Panayiotis, who blogs all the way from the UK.
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So, I began my first Blog/Website in May 2014, when my daughter, Georgina, suggested I combined my enthusiasm for cooking, with my skills for writing Articles, which I discovered I had, during my time in Advertising Sales, for Local Media. My first site was called “Subjectspot” which was intended to be a more broad spectrum of Articles. But in December of 2014, I decided to hone in on my love for writing about my Birthplace, Cyprus. Be it Food Recipes, it’s Historic Wines, Produce or Travel to there, I just can’t write enough about the beautiful Island of Cyprus, which is also reputed to be the Birthplace of no less a Deity than the Goddess of Love herself, Aphrodite!

So came into existence “CYTasty”, which is my current website. The name can be interpreted in two ways, “See Why it’s Tasty” or “Cyprus Tasty” with the play in the lettering of the name of the new Website.
 Favourite Cuisine…Hmmmm…this is very hard as I do luv my food and like many cuisines! How to choose?
OK, if I had a gun put to my head and made to choose one, it would have to be the Greek cuisine. It’s so varied, tasty and overall Healthy. It includes veg, salads, many forms & methods of cooking, lot’s of Fish & Seafood and of course, my favourite, Souvlaki! (Second is Italian, then Chinese and then Lebanese then Spanish, ok, I’ll stop here !Lol ).
 
 My Favourite Recipe that I have come up with thus far is
“Salmon Fillets and Fresh Fig Herb Bake”, as I do luv Salmon Fillets. In my view it’s simple, but effective, with a great fusion of flavours.
 
Second favourite recipe:
“Halloumi and Vegetable Souvlaki Delight”.
 
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Featured in the photo is Mr Galanis himself showing us his famous souvlakia. He is rocking the Greek Wives Club Apron in the photo.

Two Favourite Chefs:
This is very hard for me, as I know many Chefs and am being followed on Twitter by a fair few famous ones. Nigella Lawson, Keith Floyd when he was still around and Jamie Oliver come straight to mind. Amy Riollo, with her knowledge of many cuisines, Ancient foods & origins of recipes, of course her lovely Books and Videos too.
If I had to name my two favourite Chefs though, it would be Chef Aldo Zilli and Chef Tonia Buxton.
Chef Aldo Zilli I admire very much as he came from a very humble background, has reached the Top of his Trade by being referred to as “The Godfather of Italian Cooking”, yet he is very down to earth and cooks my kind of food.
Chef Tonia Buxton’s Books and Videos are amazing and she does Greek Food, as well as Greek Cypriot food, very, very well! She’s also a very nice person and like Aldo, follows me & talks to me on twitter. Tonia does my favourite Cuisine, Greek, best, so is definitely one of my favourite two chefs.
 
 Where do you currently reside?
I was born on the Island of Cyprus, but since 1972 I have lived in London, UK.
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Thank you very much to CyTasty for letting us feature you! Well done on your blog, and we wish you the very best with your upcoming recipes.
Please visit CyTasty here for more great recipes. >>> http://www.cytasty.com/

Traditional Baklava By Kouzounas Kitchen

There are many many different variations of baklava, and it depends on what part of Greece you are from. In my case, I learned how to make baklava from my yiayia. Enjoy~

Traditional Baklava Recipe

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Ingredients:

  • 1 package phyllo dough or fresh phyllo Recipe>> http://kouzounaskitchen.com/2013/07/14/the-best-home-made-phyllo-dough/

  • 1 pound chopped toasted walnuts & toasted almonds

  • 1 cup clarified butter

  • 1 teaspoon ground Saigon cinnamon

  • 1 cup water

  • 1 cup demerara sugar or granulated sugar (For thicker syrup use demerara)

  • 2 Orange peels
  • 1 Cinnamon stick
  • 1.5 teaspoon vanilla powder

  • 1/2 cup honey

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F(175 degrees C).
  2. Butter the pan bottom, and sides.
  3. In a food processor, chop the nuts, until medium course grind.  Set aside.
  4. Unroll phyllo dough. Cut the phyllo in half, and place a lightly damp towel over the top of the phyllo.
  5.  Place three sheets of phyllo on the bottom of the pan, making sure to butter each sheet. Sprinkle about 2 tablespoons of nut mixture over the top, making sure all the sheets get some nut mixture.
  6. Repeat this process until you use all the phyllo sheets.
    Using a sharp knife cut into square shape peices.
  7. Bake for about 45 minutes, or until the top is golden brown. (Make sure the bottom phyllo is golden brown as well.) You can place a piece of foil over the top if the bottom isn’t fully cooked.
    While the baklava is baking, prepare the sauce. I say the sauce makes the baklava.
  8. Boil sugar, water, and honey. Add 1 stick of cinnamon, orange peel, and vanilla.
  9. Simmer for about 20 minutes or until the syrup is thick.
  10. Remove baklava from oven and immediately serve the warm sauce over the baklava.
  11. Serve with powdered cinnamon over the top.
  12. Do not refrigerate baklava, as it will get soggy.( You can keep baklava on a plate, wrapped with foil.)

Kali Orexi!