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Greek main course or appetizer recipes?

Hoping to find some new recipes here. I already do my own tiropitas, spanakopitas, aveologemeno soup, and a few others. I really LOVE Greek cooking, alhough some can be pretty fattening. I have SOOO many recipes for lamb, so if anyone cares to share something passed down to them or that they know on their own, I would be so happy!! :)

Thanks for reading my post!

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  1. Okay, this is a Greek-Style recipe and may not be totally authentically Greek but we had it again this past weekend and it was awesome...brought the tiny bit of leftovers there were to work for lunch and my boss said "What is that aroma? God, that smells so good!"

    Greek Style Stuffed Chicken Breasts

    1 - 10 ounce pkg frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained well

    1/4 pound feta, crumbled
    3 Tablespoons grated Romano cheese
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    4 or 5 boneless skinless chicken breasts
    2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
    2 Tablespoons butter
    3 Tablespoons flour
    juice of 1 lemon
    1 cup chicken broth
    1 cup dry white wine (I use Sauv Blanc)
    1 Tablespoon oregano

    Mix the thawed and drained spinach with the 2 cheeses and a little salt & pepper. In each chicken breast, make a horizontal slit in the side to form a deep pocket. Fill with spinach mixture and close with toothpicks. Heat 1 Tbsp. oil and butter in a large skillet; brown the chicken breasts on both sides and remove to warm platter.
    Sprinkle the flour into the same pan and mix with remaining 1 Tbsp. oil to make a roux, cook for about 2 minutes. Slowly add the wine and chicken broth and stir until a smooth sauce has formed. Add the lemon juice and oregano and a little salt & pepper to taste. Bring to a boil and return the chicken breasts to the pan. Cover the pan and reduce the heat to a simmer. Simmer for about 20 minutes depending on size of breasts. Good with orzo or orzo pilaf and Greek salad.

    ***Note: I ended up coating the stuffed chicken breasts with seasoned flour and browned them that way...just seemed easier to me, rather than add the flour to the oil, etc. Either way, you end up with a decently thickened lemony sauce. Oh, and I basted the chicken breasts too while simmering. I might try incorporating a little garlic to the sauce next time but it might overpower the lemon...not sure.

    There is also a very lemony Greek Chicken and Potatoes recipe at Epicurious that I've also made a number of times that you might consider also.

    1. sounds great!! thanks Val!

      1. I learned greek cooking from my mil in Athens and taught for awhile. I have recipes for stuffed grape leaves, moussaka, pastitio, stuffed vegetables, tsatsiki,gigantes(baked giant beans) baklava, galactoboureko among others. If you are interested let me know which one(s) you want and I will post.

        4 Replies
        1. re: emilief

          Oooo - gigantes, please! Would love an authentic real-life recipe. Had lots of this dish in Greece this summer and when I got home I bought a bag of dry beans but haven't yet cooked them.

          1. re: emilief

            Thanks emilief!!! I have recipes a great recipe for pastitio (although I could eat the whole pan myself :)...if you do not mind...can you give me your bean recipe, and stuffed veggies??? I have many recipes from my friend who was raised on Crete, but I always feel as if she is holding something back??? maybe it's me...but anyway..thank you sooo much EMILIEF!!!

            have a lovely day :)

            1. re: Angelina

              I would love it if you (or emilief) posted a pastitio recipe! Thanks so much!

            2. re: emilief

              I grew up in the Southwest Suburbs of Chicago where there's a large Greek population. Where there are Greeks there are great Greek diners, restaurants, bakeries, and gyro stands...love it! I loved dining at my Greek friends homes for homemade Greek delicacies. Anyway, Greek food is one of my very favorites so any recipes would be appreciated. I cook a lot but have never tried making Greek food...I usually go to Greek Islands, Nine Muses, Rodity's, East of Eden, and Santorini for my fix. I would love a recipe or two for Greek Chicken (riganati, lemon/oregano, etc), avgolemono, navy bean soup, lentil, etc. Much appreciated.
              Alex. afinance@rcn.com

            3. Here they are:
              BAked Giant Beans (gigantes plaki)
              1/2 kg or 1 lb dried giant beans (buy at greek store)
              1 cup good greek olive oil
              2 large onions
              4 cloves of garlic
              3 large tomatoes (right in season now!!)
              1/2 cup chopped parsley (curley)
              2 bay leaves
              salt and pepper

              Soak beans in water overnight. Boil until almost tender and drain, reserving some of the cooking water. Chop onions fine (I do in food processor) . Mince Garlic. Puree tomatoes in food processor or blender. Chop parsley.
              Sautee garlic and onions lightly in the olive oil. Add tomatoes and parsley and bay leaves and cook until sauce thickens. Add beans and stir. Salt and pepper to taste. Put in an ovenproof casserole ( I use a heavy crueset) and bake uncovered in a 350 oven for about 1-1 1/2 hours until beans are tender. Every 15-20 minutes add some reserved cooking water to be sure beans are tender and there is a sauce.

              Greek Stuffed Vegetables (Yemista)
              Amounts are approximate depending on size of veggies.

              I use about 6 each of tomatoes,small eggplant, zucchini (if you can find round eight ball zucchini they are easier to use) and peppers.

              Two onions, chopped fine
              2 1/2 lbs ground lamb
              about 3/4 cup uncooked rice
              2 tbsp chopped parsley
              olive oil, melted butter and fine bread crumbs

              Rinse all vegetables. slice off top of tomatoes, remove pule and put in blender. Salt and turn upside down onpaper towels to drain, save tops.
              Cut a slice off eggplant lengthwise, scoop out pulp, put in blender, salt and turn upside down to drain (save cut piece)
              Do same with zucchini. Cut tops of pepper, remove seeds and drain, save tops.

              blend tomato, eggplant and zucchini pulp together until pureed.

              Sautee onions in about 1.4 cup olive oil, add ground meat cooking until brown and soft. Drain off fat. Add vegetable pulp, raw rice, chopped parsley and salt and pepper to taste.
              Simmer until rice is almost completely cooked. Rinse and dry eggplant and zucchini. Stuff all the vegetables with meat rice and veg mix. and place in large baking pans which have been oiled and dusted with bread crumbs.
              Place tops on vegetables, drizzle with melted butter or combination of butter and oil, and dust with bread crumbs. Bake in 350 oven for about 1-1 1/2 hours until vegeatbles are soft and beginning to brown.Serve hot or cold.

              4 Replies
              1. re: emilief

                efharistou!!! (I hope it is spelled right!!)

                If you have any others you think are great, please pass along!!

                Yasou!

                Angelina

                1. re: emilief

                  I grew up in the Southwest Suburbs of Chicago where there's a large Greek population. Where there are Greeks there are great Greek diners, restaurants, bakeries, and gyro stands...love it! I loved dining at my Greek friends homes for homemade Greek delicacies. Anyway, Greek food is one of my very favorites so any recipes would be appreciated. I cook a lot but have never tried making Greek food...I usually go to Greek Islands, Nine Muses, Rodity's, East of Eden, and Santorini for my fix. I would love a recipe or two for Greek Chicken (riganati, lemon/oregano, etc), avgolemono, navy bean soup, lentil, etc. Much appreciated.
                  Alex. afinance@rcn.com

                  1. re: emilief

                    Thank you! I can't wait to make the beans. By the way - I bought some very large dried lima beans. Is it close enough or the same?

                    1. re: Nyleve

                      Gigantes are broad beans aka fava beans. They are also called koukia in Greek.
                      Lima beans (aka butter beans) have a stronger taste than broad beans (imho)and a different texture. You could cook them the same way, but I don't think they will taste like the gigantes you had in Greece.
                      You can buy broad beans frozen at Sun Valley. Some of the produce stands on the Danforth in TO sell fava beans in their pods from time to time....you could also buy the dried broad beans at most shops that sell Greek and Portuguese products.

                  2. I really dont know. The gigantes have more of a texture like regular navy beans than lima beans. You should try to find giant beans. Of course you can try the ones you have and see how they turn out!! I keep about 6 bags of giant beans in my cupboard at all times so when the urge strikes I can make them. This is the best time to make them when tomatoes are in season. If the tomatoes are lousy in the winter I sometimes use canned tomatoes.

                    1. Here are the recipes for navy bean soup (soupa fassolia)- which is very very easy, cheap and very delicious, and avgolemono (egg lemon soup).
                      Soupa fassolia

                      1 lb dried navy beans
                      2 onions chopped file,
                      2 carrots, diced
                      2 sticks celery, diced
                      6 cloves garlic chopped
                      3 tbsp tomato paste
                      1/2-1 cup good greek olive oil
                      salt and pepper to taste

                      Soak the beans overnight and rinse. Put in a large dutch oven with all the chopped vegetables and about 12 cups of water. Bring to a boil. Lower heat and cook just above simmer for about 1 hour. Add tomato paste diluted in water and stirred until smooth, the olive oil and seasoning. Simmer until the beans are tender, stirring occasionally (about an hour). Adjust seasonings. Serve with salad and crusty bread for a great winter meal.

                      Egg lemon Soup (avgolemono)

                      About 1 1/2 quarts of chicken broth. I make broth from scratch, strain out the chicken and vegetables, chop up the chicken, carrots and celery and add them in at the end.

                      about 1/2-3/4 cup rice
                      3 eggs
                      juice of 2 lemons
                      salt and pepper.

                      Bring the stock to a boil. Add the rice and simmer until rice is done. Beat the eggs until froth, then slowly add the lemon juice. Slowly beat a ladleful of hot stock into the egg and lemon, then slowly add one or two more ladelfuls. Slowly pour egg lemon stock mixture into the soup being sure to whisk all the time and not boil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add in chicken meat and chopped cooked celery and carrots it desired.
                      If the soup is too thick add in more chicken broth.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: emilief

                        Thanks sooo much. Not to be greedy but do you have any Greek Chicken recipes or broiled/roasted fish (not cod fish though)? Thanks. Alex
                        afinance@rcn.com

                        1. re: emilief

                          Thanks for your recipes. Here are a couple amazing family recipes using herbs de provence. Be sure to rub the herbs thoroughly between your hands before applying them. This herb combo is amazing on Beer Can Chicken and my mother’s roast chicken. The oven roasted chicken is absolutely one of the very best chicken recipe’s you will ever try. Your friends and family will be blown away! My mom tweaked this recipe for the last 30 years and came up with the perfect one so, stick to it and you’ll love it....well sometimes I substitute a different blend of herbs but keep everything else the same. High quality dry herb’s makes a huge difference...cheap herbs are usually old and flavorless.

                          HERBS DE PROVENCE BEER CAN CHICKEN: Get your egg and stone platform heated to 375 degree’s. Beer can chicken stands are available but not necessary.

                          Ingredients:

                          Approximately 3.5lb whole chicken

                          3-5 tablespoon’s of herb’s de provence

                          kosher salt to taste

                          3- tablespoons (or more...careful not to use too much, It could catch on fire. Use just enough olive oil so it’s not dripping all over) of extra virgin olive oil-works best because of it’s low burning point. Makes skin really crispy.

                          Fresh ground pepper to taste

                          Directions:

                          Wash and dry chicken thoroughly inside and out.

                          Rub olive oil all over bird inside and out

                          Rub kosher salt inside and out to taste and finally pepper

                          Rub herb’s de provence all over inside and out

                          1⁄2 of a beer in the can (you can’t waste the other half so you must drink it)

                          Place the bird over the can on the grill and prop up the legs in front of the bird

                          Close Green Egg lid and cook for 45 minutes before checking. Adjust temperature if needed when bird appears to be burning (not likely). Cook another 15-25 minutes or until juice from bird is clear.

                          When bird is done, remove from grill and cover with foil and let stand for 10-15 minutes before serving

                          LOLA MONCADA OF NEW ORLEANS ROASTED CHICKEN: This recipe is unbelievable! My mom tweaked this for the last 30 years so stick to the recipe, you’ll love it.

                          Marinating for 4-6 hours is best (overnight marinating is too long...the acid from the lemon starts to cook the bird and break everything down ). Try roasting it in the conventional oven first / at 375 degree’s. I haven’t tried this recipe in my egg yet.

                          Ingredients:

                          3-3.5 lb whole chicken

                          1-2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

                          1⁄2 teaspoon ground pepper

                          Fresh Lemon juice from 1 lemon (you can use juice from only 1⁄2 lemon if you don’t like it lemony)

                          6 large garlic cloves squeezed through the garlic press

                          TWO OPTIONS FOR DRY HERBS:

                          3-5 tablespoon’s of herb’s de provence

                          OR

                          1 tablespoon of Italian or Greek oregano, 2-3 tablespoons of rosemary, 1 teaspoon of whole fennel seed

                          2 tablespoons of Japanese Tamari (do not substitute with soy sauce)

                          2 tablespoons of Italian red balsamic vinegar from Modena (do not substitute with other vinegars)

                          1⁄2 to 3⁄4 teaspoon of coarse salt - OPTIONAL (careful not to over salt...there’s salt in the chicken stock as well as the Tamari)

                          1 regular sized can of lower sodium chicken broth (around 14 fluid ounces), preferably organic. If you only have the regular sodium chicken broth then, do not add the optional coarse salt.

                          1⁄2 cup of dry champagne (optional-try the recipe once without champagne-use more chicken broth in the roasting pan if you don’t use champagne)

                          2-3 large potato’s peeled and cut in long thick sections / place in cold water until ready to use

                          Directions: If you follow the recipe, you’ll be blown away at how amazing it is.

                          Drain potato’s and place in roasting pan.

                          Wash and dry bird thoroughly then place in roasting pan over potato’s.

                          In a jar or Tupperware bowl with lid combine all of the ingredients (except for the chicken broth and potato’s) and close tightly.

                          Shake marinate for 30-60 seconds and let stand for 5 minutes.

                          Pour marinate over bird and potato’s inside and out and let stand covered in refrigerator for 4-6 hours. Try and cover the potato’s with bird as much as possible.

                          Remove bird from refrigerator and let stand for 20 minutes prior to cooking.

                          Preheat oven to 375 degree’s. Total cooking time is typically 70 minutes depending on size of bird.

                          Mix 1⁄2 can of chicken broth with 1⁄2 to 1 cup of dry champagne (add more chicken broth when champagne is excluded)

                          Pour chicken broth and champagne mixure in bottom of roasting pan.

                          Place roasting pan with chicken and potato’s on middle rack uncovered.

                          Cook bird with breast side down for 30 minutes.

                          Turn bird breast side up and then baste (baste once only-basting throughout the cooking time will make for soggy skin) top of bird with the liquid in bottom of pan. Add more heated chicken broth and champagne to pan if needed.

                          Cook for another 40 minutes or until skin is relatively dark and crispy.

                          Remove from oven and cover tightly with foil. Let stand for 10-15 minutes before serving.

                          This recipe is amazing with mashed potato’s as well. Use the juice from the bottom of the pan.

                          Please report back with your results.

                          Enjoy.

                          Alex Moncada
                          afinance@rcn.com