Choco-Tahini Spread


Choco-tahini Spread

Η συνταγή και στα ελληνικά στο τέλος της ανάρτησης!

I know for many of you schools have already started and all kids are beginning slowly, slowly to adjust to their everyday routine. Here, schools start a bit later, on the 11th of September and our school, since it follows an international program, starts this coming Friday 4th of September. My son has decided to abandon the Greek system and follow an English-speaking school with a system that is close to the Anglo-Saxon one. To be honest, I am a little anxious on how he is going to manage this change, but I assume, since he wanted it so much, he will be able to cope with it and eventually adapt to having to learn everything in English.

Having studied in both systems, I know it is not easy to have to learn everything in a foreign language and it takes time and double the effort you have to put, so as to be able to keep up with the rest of the students. So, let’s hope that this whole venture will prove successful and he will be able to complete his high school studies in this system and consequently be able to continue his studies abroad.

Choco-tahini Spread

But before we arrive at his college years, when I will have to say goodbye to him and let him live by his own, I have to solve more urgent matters such as his break snack and his lunch. I am sure, I am not going to say something original here by mentioning that having to plan a child’s snacks and menus for every week is a pain in the neck really. Most of the times you are running out of ideas and even if you have some, they are scrutinized by the little one with unpredictable reactions. Thankfully, my son is quite easy going child and most of the times he eats what he sees when he opens his lunch box. I cannot begin to imagine how hard this is for a mother of a picky eater.

Choco-tahini Spread

I was a very picky eater when I was a child. I was eating a very narrow selection of food and at very small quantities. My mother says that when it came to food I was a nightmare. She tells me that by the time I became 5 years old, she had to paint the kitchen cupboards because they were discolored from the cleaning she had to do after I was throwing up my food. I feel so sorry for her, but hey look at me now! Not only have I changed my attitude towards food, but I became a food blogger. So, she must have done something right between all my vomits and now!

Anyway, going back to school meals and snacks, I think I have the perfect spread for those of you who believe that Nutella should be consumed in moderation and it is not the best thing in this world to be eaten every single day. This is a healthy substitute consisting of tahini, real chocolate, sesame oil, honey and butter or margarine depending which one you prefer to use. This is a totally healthy snack for your children and for you, with the beautiful flavor of tahini pairing perfectly with the chocolate. I loved every spoon and so did my son. Do give this a try and you can also use it as frosting just like I did in these brownies.

Choco-tahini Spread

 

 

5.0 from 3 reviews
Choco-Tahini Spread
 
Author/ Συγγραφέας:
Recipe type/ Τύπος Πιάτου: Breakfast, snack
Cuisine/ Κουζίνα: Greek
Ingredients/ Συστατικά
  • 50 gr. / 1.7 oz. semi-sweet chocolate 50 to 60% cocoa
  • 150 gr. / 5 oz. tahini paste
  • 40 gr. 1.5 oz. sesame oil
  • 70 gr. / 2.5 oz. honey
  • 50 gr. / 1.7 oz. butter or margarine
Instructions/ Εκτέλεση
  1. Melt chocolate in a glass bowl in microwave as follows.
  2. Place the pieces in the glass bowl and put for 30 seconds.
  3. Remove and mix.
  4. Repeat this procedure just until chocolate has melted completely.
  5. In another bowl mix tahini with the sesame oil.
  6. Add the honey and the melted chocolate and mix again to incorporate.
  7. Add the butter and mix well so there are no lumps.
  8. Put in a small vase in cool place and use it as a spread on toasted bread, or on waffles, pancakes, crepes etc.
  9. I made two vases.
  10. One was eaten in a week and the other one I kept it to see how much it lasts.
  11. This is the third week and it preserves just fine.
Notes/ Σημειώσεις
Recipe adapted from Stelios Parliaros

 

 

5.0 from 3 reviews
Άλλειμα Ταχινιού με Σοκολάτα
 
Author/ Συγγραφέας:
Recipe type/ Τύπος Πιάτου: Πρωινό, σνακ
Cuisine/ Κουζίνα: Ελληνική
Ingredients/ Συστατικά
  • 50 γρ. σοκολάτα κουβερτούρα 50 έως 60% κακάο
  • 150 γρ. ταχίνι
  • 40 γρ. σησαμέλαιο
  • 70 γρ. μέλι
  • 50 γρ. βούτυρο ή μαργαρίνη
Instructions/ Εκτέλεση
  1. Λιώστε την σοκολάτα σε ένα γυάλινο μπολ στο φούρνο μικροκυμάτων ως εξής.
  2. Τοποθετήστε τα κομμάτια στο γυάλινο μπολ και βάλτε τα για 30 δευτερόλεπτα.
  3. Αφαιρέστε και ανακατέψτε.
  4. Επαναλάβετε αυτή τη διαδικασία μέχρι η σοκολάτα να λιώσει εντελώς.
  5. Σε ένα άλλο μπολ ανακατέψτεε το ταχίνι με το σησαμέλαιο.
  6. Προσθέστε το μέλι και τη λιωμένη σοκολάτα και ανακατέψτε και πάλι να ενσωματωθούν.
  7. Προσθέστε το βούτυρο και ανακατέψτε καλά έτσι.
  8. Βάλτε σε ένα βαζάκι σε δροσερό μέρος.
  9. Έκανα δύο βάζα.
  10. Το ένα καταναλώθηκε σε μια εβδομάδα και το άλλο το κράτησα για να δω πόσο κρατάει.
  11. Αυτή είναι η τρίτη εβδομάδα και διατηρείται μια χαρά.
Notes/ Σημειώσεις
Συνταγή προσαρμογή από το Στέλιο Παρλιάρο

 

Zucchini Baskets with Greek Olives


Zucchini Baskets

Η συνταγή και στα ελληνικά στο τέλος της ανάρτησης!

Olive tree is known from ancient years and it comes from western Mediterranean. According to myth the first place where it was planted was Athens during Athena’s fight with Poseidon. Greeks were the first people who cultivated the olive tree and according to contemporary historians neither Italians, nor Spanish and Tunisians knew its existence and cultivation.

Olive tree is evergreen with small leaves like spears. Its fruits are ready to be picked late fall beginning of winter. The trees that are meant to give olive oil are different from those that give the well-known to all of us olives. Mid fall to early winter people start picking the olives and it is a very demanding and tiring procedure. Underneath the trees the laborers lay synthetic fabrics like nets and olives fall with the help of special tools on them. The olives are cleaned from any branches and they are placed in special containers to transport them to the oil press to extract the olive oil.

Zucchini Baskets

In the oil press the olives go through an industrial decanter. First are weighed and then they are cleaned from any foreign particles. Continuing, the olives go to the crusher where they are crushed and a paste is created. This paste is mollified for about 20 to 30 minutes in order to allow the small olive drops to agglomerate. In this stage, the temperature must not exceed 26 to 27 C. After that the paste goes to the industrial decanter where the olive oil will be separated from the pulp.

“The decanter is a large capacity horizontal centrifuge rotating approximately 3,000 rpm, the high centrifugal force created allows the phases to be readily separated according to their different densities (solids > vegetation water > oil). Inside the decanter’s rotating conical drum there is a coil that rotates more slowly, pushing the solid materials out of the system.” (Source: Wikipedia)

Leaving the decanter, the olive oil continues its journey to the centrifugal separator where the olive oil is cleaned from any residues, water etc. and it is ready to be consumed.

Zucchini Baskets

Now I am going to share a secret with you that all people who consume olive oil should know, but the majority doesn’t. I am sure many of you at some point have tried an olive oil that once you swallowed it, it burnt your throat and I am pretty sure that you have rejected this olive oil as too strong. Well, actually this is totally wrong. Polyphenols which are found in olives and accordingly to olive oil are natural chemical substances that have antioxidant properties and help in the prevention of various diseases associated with oxidative stress, cancer and cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases. The more polyphenols an olive oil has the more it burns your throat when you swallow it. So don’t be in a rush to reject this type of olive oil, as it better than the one that has a mild taste.

Now, I was watching TV5Europe and I saw a French chef making these little zucchini baskets. I dusted my French and managed to understand the recipe, which was very easy actually. I decided to make it with a few changes I thought necessary and they were so delicious even my son, who is not so enthusiastic about zucchini, ate them and liked them very much.

Zucchini Baskets

 

 

5.0 from 4 reviews
Zucchini Baskets with Greek Olives
 
Author/ Συγγραφέας:
Recipe type/ Τύπος Πιάτου: Appetizer
Cuisine/ Κουζίνα: Mediterranean
Serves: 2
Ingredients/ Συστατικά
  • 2 round zucchinis
  • 5 Kalamata olives
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
  • ½ tsp oregano
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 100 to 120 gr. / 3.5 to 4 oz. graviera cheese or gruyere, grated
  • Olive oil
Instructions/ Εκτέλεση
  1. Cut the zucchinis in half.
  2. Cut their stems on both sides and with a spoon empty their flesh leaving half inch from the skin.
  3. Place them clean part downwards to a steamer and steam for about 10 to 12 minutes.
  4. Remove from steamer and put them immediately in very cold water to stop them from continuing to boil.
  5. Cut their flesh in small cubes and also cut the olives in pieces.
  6. In a skillet pour couple of tbsp. of olive oil and add the garlic.
  7. Sauté for a minute and then add the zucchini flesh, the olives and all the herbs, sugar, salt and pepper.
  8. Sauté for about 5 minutes in medium / high heat.
  9. Remove and add the 80 gr. of graviera cheese or gruyere and mix to incorporate.
  10. Take the zucchini baskets and add 1 tsp of olive oil in each one of them.
  11. Stuff them with the mixture and cover them with graviera or gruyere.
  12. Preheat oven to 175°C / 340°F.
  13. Bake them for 15 minutes and then turn on the broiler and broil for couple of minutes or until they take a nice golden color on top.
  14. Serve warm.

 
5.0 from 4 reviews
Καλαθάκια Κολοκυθιού με Ελιές
 
Author/ Συγγραφέας:
Recipe type/ Τύπος Πιάτου: Ορεκτικό
Cuisine/ Κουζίνα: Μεσογειακή
Serves: 2
Ingredients/ Συστατικά
  • 2 στρογγυλά κολοκυθάκια
  • 5 ελιές
  • 2 σκελίδες σκόρδο, λιωμένες
  • 1 κ.σ. φρέσκο βασιλικό, ψιλοκομμένο
  • ½ κ.γ. ρίγανη
  • ½ κ.γ. ξερό βασιλικό
  • Αλάτι και πιπέρι
  • 1 κ.γ. ζάχαρη
  • 100 γρ. τυρί γραβιέρα, τριμμένη
  • Ελαιόλαδο
Instructions/ Εκτέλεση
  1. Κόβετε τα κολοκυθάκια στη μέση.
  2. Κόψτε τους μίσχους από τις δύο πλευρές και με ένα κουτάλι αφαιρέστε τη σάρκα τους αφήνοντας ένα εκατοστό από τη φλούδα.
  3. Τοποθετήστε τα με το σκαμμένο μέρος προς τα κάτω σε έναν ατμομάγειρα για περίπου 10 με 12 λεπτά.
  4. Βγάλτε από τον ατμομάγειρα και βάλτε τα αμέσως σε πολύ κρύο νερό για να σταματήσουν να βράζουν.
  5. Κόψτε τη σάρκα τους σε μικρούς κύβους και κόψτε και τις ελιές σε κομματάκια.
  6. Σε ένα τηγάνι ρίξτε δύο κουταλιές ελαιόλαδο και προσθέστε το σκόρδο.
  7. Σοτάρετε για ένα λεπτό και στη συνέχεια προσθέστε τη σάρκα των κολοκυθιών, τις ελιές και τα μυρωδικά, ζάχαρη, αλάτι και πιπέρι.
  8. Σοτάρετε για περίπου 5 λεπτά σε μέτρια / υψηλή θερμοκρασία.
  9. Βγάλτε από τη φωτιά και προσθέστε τα 80 γρ. γραβιέρα και ανακατέψτε να ενσωματωθούν.
  10. Πάρτε τα κολοκυθάκια και προσθέστε 1 κουταλάκι του γλυκού ελαιόλαδο σε κάθε ένα από αυτά.
  11. Γεμίστε με το μείγμα και σκεπάστε με την υπόλοιπη γραβιέρα.
  12. Προθερμάνετε το φούρνο στους 175° C.
  13. Ψήστε για 15 λεπτά και στη συνέχεια ανάψτε το γκριλ και ψήστε για δύο λεπτά ή μέχρι να πάρουν ένα ωραίο χρυσό χρώμα στην κορυφή.
  14. Σερβίρονται ζεστά.

 

Stuffed Chicken Rolls


Stuffed Chicken Rolls

Ησυνταγή και στα ελληνικά στο τέλος της ανάρτησης!

In 490 BC, during the first Persian invasion to Greece, the battle of Marathon took place in the homonymous area close to Athens in Attica prefecture. The battle was between Athenians, aided by Plataeans and Persians under the commandment of Datis and Artaphernes. King of Persia, Darius I, had a strong urge to subjugate Greece and get revenge for the Greek involvement in the attempt from the cities of Ionia to overthrow of him. Darius was so eager to destroy Athens that according to myth, he put one of his servants to say to him every single day the following: “Master, don’t forget about the Athenians.”

Stuffed Chicken Rolls

The Battle of Marathon took place in 490 BC, during the first Persian invasion of Greece. It was a fight between the citizens of Athens, aided by Plataea, and a Persian force commanded by Datis and Artaphernes. Miltiades a brilliant Greek general was the leader of the small Greek army. In any other case, they wouldn’t stand a chance to win the numerous Persian army, but Marathon was surrounded by marshes and mountains and thus a large number of Persian army, including cavalry, was unable to join the fight. Miltiades ordered a general attack against the Persians. He reinforced his flanks, luring the Persians’ best fighters into his center. The inward wheeling flanks enveloped the Persians, routing them. The Persian army broke in panic towards their ships, and large numbers were slaughtered.

The defeat of the Persians in Marathon marked the end of the first Persian attack towards Greece and Persians retreated to Asia trying to reorganize their army after their heavy loses.

Stuffed Chicken Rolls

This battle has become even more famous because it was the inspiration for the Marathon race. Although thought to be historically inaccurate, the myth of the Greek messenger Pheidippides running from Marathon to Athens with the news of the victory became the inspiration for this athletic event, introduced at the 1896 Athens Olympics. After Pheidippides arrived in Athens he said one word: “Nikómen (we have won in ancient Greek)” and then he collapsed and passed away from exhaustion.

Marathon is a beautiful place close to the sea and very close to my home. So, quite often my family and I we go for Sunday walks to enjoy the sea and have lunch there. One time we visited a restaurant and I tried their stuffed chicken and I loved it. As a true food blogger, I immediately started operating on the chicken to see what it had inside and try to recreate it. The surgery was successful and the recipe was decoded. So, when I was thinking of what was going to be cooking for my boys, I immediately thought of trying to make this chicken we ate at the restaurant and we all loved it. I can tell you that the experiment was a success and we all enjoyed these stuffed chicken rolls very much, as they were very close to what we have tried there. But without further ado, let’s go and start making them!

Stuffed Chicken Rolls

 

 

5.0 from 9 reviews
Stuffed Chicken Rolls
 
Author/ Συγγραφέας:
Recipe type/ Τύπος Πιάτου: Main Course
Cuisine/ Κουζίνα: Greek
Serves: 4
Ingredients/ Συστατικά
  • 700 gr. / 1.5 lb chicken breasts, opened flat like butterflies
  • 1 large or two small red bell peppers, for Greeks I used Florina peppers, sliced
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 100 gr. / 3.5 oz. feta cheese, for Greeks, I used the soft one with the buttery texture, for those who do not have access to such feta, just use what you ordinarily buy, only you should add 1 triangle of la vache qui rit cheese for every chicken roll. Feta should be divided according to the pieces you have to stuff.
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • Olive oil
  • Parchment paper
  • Toothpicks to secure the rolls
Instructions/ Εκτέλεση
  1. Preheat oven to 200°C / 400°F.
  2. In a skillet sauté the peppers and onion until they become soft.
  3. In the end add the fresh basil.
  4. Remove and set aside.
  5. Cut parchment paper in as many pieces as your chicken breasts.
  6. Take one breast, salt and pepper it.
  7. If you are lucky and can find the soft buttery feta cheese, add about a spoon and spread it like cream cheese.
  8. Add some peppers and onions some oregano and roll it.
  9. Seal it with toothpicks in that way, so the cheese doesn’t come out of it.
  10. For those who cannot find buttery feta, you follow the same procedure only you spread the la vache qui rit, then add a piece of feta cheese and then the peppers and seal.
  11. Take a parchment paper, add some olive oil, place the chicken roll in it and close it like a parcel.
  12. Do the same for the rest of the chickens.
  13. Place them in a pan and bake them in the oven for about 20 minutes.
  14. Open the parchment paper and broil them for a few minutes to get a nice golden color on top, about 3 to 4 minutes.
  15. Let them rest for five minutes and then cut them in slices and serve them.
  16. French fries go perfectly with it!

 
5.0 from 9 reviews
Γεμιστά Ρολλά Κοτόπουλου
 
Author/ Συγγραφέας:
Recipe type/ Τύπος Πιάτου: Κυρίως Πιάτο
Cuisine/ Κουζίνα: Ελληνική
Serves: 4
Ingredients/ Συστατικά
  • 700 γρ. στήθη κοτόπουλου, φιλεταρισμένα
  • 1 μεγάλη ή δύο μικρές κόκκινες πιπεριές, χρησιμοποίησα πιπεριές Φλώρινας, σε φέτες
  • 1 κρεμμύδι, κομμένο σε φέτες
  • 100 γρ. τυρί φέτα, μαλακή σαν βούτυρο, για όσους δεν έχουν πρόσβαση σε τέτοια φέτα, χρησιμοποιήστε ακριβώς όποια αγοράζετε συνήθως, μόνο θα πρέπει να προσθέσετε 1 τρίγωνο la vache qui rit τυρί για κάθε ρολό κοτόπουλο. Τη φέτα την κόβετε σε τόσα κομμάτια όσα και τα φιλέτα που θα γεμίσετε.
  • Αλάτι και πιπέρι
  • 2 κ.σ. φρέσκο βασιλικό, ψιλοκομμένο
  • 1 κ.γ. ρίγανη
  • Ελαιόλαδο
  • Λαδόκολλα
  • Οδοντογλυφίδες για να ασφαλίσετε τα ρολά
Instructions/ Εκτέλεση
  1. Προθερμάνετε το φούρνο στους 200° C.
  2. Σε ένα τηγάνι σοτάρετε τις πιπεριές και το κρεμμύδι μέχρι να μαλακώσουν.
  3. Στο τέλος προσθέστε το φρέσκο βασιλικό.
  4. Βάλτε στην άκρη.
  5. Κόψτε το χαρτί περιτυλίγματος σε όσα στήθη κοτόπουλου θα γεμίσετε.
  6. Πάρτε ένα στήθος, αλατοπιπερώστε.
  7. Αν βρείτε τη μαλακή βουτυράτη φέτα, προσθέσετε ένα κουτάλι και απλώστε.
  8. Προσθέστε λίγες πιπεριές και κρεμμύδια, ρίξτε λίγη ρίγανη και ρολάρετε.
  9. Σφραγίστε με οδοντογλυφίδες, έτσι ώστε το τυρί να μην βγει έξω.
  10. Για εκείνους που δεν μπορούν να βρουν βουτυράτη φέτα, ακολουθείτε την ίδια διαδικασία, μόνο απλώνετε το la vache qui rit, και στη συνέχεια προσθέτετε ένα κομμάτι τυρί φέτα και έπειτα τις πιπεριές και σφραγίζετε.
  11. Πάρτε μία λαδόκολλα, προσθέστε λίγο ελαιόλαδο, τοποθετήστε το ρολό κοτόπουλο σε αυτό και κλείστε το σαν δέμα.
  12. Κάντε το ίδιο για τα υπόλοιπα κοτόπουλα.
  13. Τοποθετείστε σε ένα ταψί και ψήστε στο φούρνο για περίπου 20 λεπτά.
  14. Ανοίξτε την λαδόκολλα και ψήστε στη σχάρα για λίγα λεπτά για να πάρει ένα ωραίο χρυσό χρώμα στην κορυφή, περίπου 3 έως 4 λεπτά.
  15. Αφήστε να ξεκουραστεί για πέντε λεπτά και στη συνέχεια κόψτε σε φέτες και σερβίρετε.
  16. Του πάνε τέλεια οι τηγανητές πατάτες!