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PIES & PITTAS – A STAPLE IN GREECE

PIES & PITTAS – A STAPLE IN GREECE

 

Cheese pies, mince pies, sausage pies, cream pies, spinach pies … and the list goes on and on.

There’s no way you would miss eating a ‘tiropita’ (cheese pie) once you visit Greece.

You can buy a ‘tiropita’ from any bakery and there’s a variety of pastry to choose from.

Home made cheese pie!!!

 

My favourite is with a bread-type pastry called ‘kourou’.

Some prefer the puff-pastry type  It is a lot tastier but very, very messy.

 

‘Tiropita’ has a filling of creamy feta cheese.  Sometimes a combination of cheese is used; every place has its own type of cheese pie.

Every place has its own feta or white cheese and they use that, giving their ‘tiropita’ that special difference.

The tastiest I have ever eaten was at a beach bar in Mykonos.  It was just divine!!!

Greeks don’t usually eat breakfast; it’s normally a coffee and out the house to go to work.

Bougatsa

These past years the younger generation is finally seeing the importance of a proper, healthy breakfast to start the day with.

A ‘tiropita’ during their first coffee break at work is the norm.

There is a wide variety of pies and they are so easy to make.

Homemade pies are practical too since it’s a great way to use any left overs.

You roll out your own pastry or just buy it from the supermarket.

Spinach pies

If you have chicken left over, you cut some yellow cheese or even feta cheese and mix it together with the cut up chicken.

Line a baking tin with the one layer of fillo (pastry), use a fork to prick the pastry, pour the filling onto it.

Cover the filling with the other layer of pastry, wet the edges and slight press together using your fingers of even a fork.

Prick the pie so that air doesn’t get trapped in it while it’s baking.

Brush over with some egg or milk and place it in the oven which has been pre-heated at 180 degrees Centigrade,  until it’s a nice golden colour.

Cut into squares and serve when cooled down a bit.

The filling can also be a sweet creamy one – my favorite! 

Bougatsa

This is called ‘Bougatsa’.  It’s similar to a milk pie filling.

When you take it out the oven though, you have to sprinkle icing sugar and cinnamon over it.

Mushrooms with sweet peppers and cubed graviera cheese is another favourite.

Spinach pie or spinach and feta … the list grows according to your imagination.

I enjoy experimenting with tastes and surprising the family with something new all the time.

 

And here’s one without any fillo (pastry).  If you’re following a weight-loss diet, this would be a hit.

I call it a Spinach Bake.  You can use broccoli if you like too.

SPINAGE VEGETARIAN BAKE

Ingredients:

  • 1 large packet of chopped spinach
  • Bread crumbs (a small coffee cup)
  • Manouri (cubed – about 300g)
  • Pepper
  • Chopped mint
  • Olive oil ( 50ml)

Method:

Mix all the above together and set aside.

Beat 4 eggs with 1 litre of full fat milk, 3 tablespoons of flour and grated stock cube.

Divide the spinach mixture into a dish (pyrex)

Pour over the milk mixture and sprinkle with grated manouri and some gouda cheese.

Bake in a moderate oven for about 40 minutes or until it gets a nice golden colour.

 

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Let me tell you, I am no Guru in the kitchen.  If I can make these, anyone can.  Trust me!

 

Good luck and … Bon Appetite!!!

 

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