Friday, May 8, 2009

Greekfest - 5/8/2009

I had a strong desire for some Greek flavors last week, so here's what I managed to come up with:

Greek Baked Shrimp

I have to admit that I made this dish twice. The first time, I made it and set it out to cool before putting it in the fridge. Then I left town for a day and a half. When I came home, I was not willing to chance a week of intestinal problems just to eat some seafood, so I threw out the first version and remade it later in the week. This may appear to be a normal dish combining shrimp, tomato and feta, but it is not. You saute some garlic and onion, then add cinnamon and allspice. Cook the tomatoes in this mixture, add the shrimp, bake it all in a casserole dish with some feta on top, and serve sprinkled with dill. This combination probably would be pretty decent normally, but the cinnamon and allspice really make the flavors pop. The tang of the feta seems to go through phases of accord and combat with the spices on your tongue, but it's all in the realm of good flavors.

Fage Greek Yogurt

One of my favorite Greek dishes is the gyro, but who has the time to process lamb and other meats with spices, form it into a cylindrical mold and slowly roast it on a spit? It's probably better that I have a day job, otherwise I might give that a try. For those of us who don't have that kind of time all the time, nature has given unto us the rotisserie chicken. Shredded chicken meat is not only healthy, but an easy addition to this meal. The base of the gyro, instead of a pita, is naan, the classic Indian flatbread. It is brushed with olive oil and garlic, then broiled just a bit. The tzatziki sauce is made with Greek yogurt (my favorite brand is pictured above), with some shredded Kirby cucumbers, salt, pepper, fresh garlic, and lemon juice. On top of this is the chicken, a mixture of grape tomatoes, sliced red onion and lemon juice, then some shredded iceberg lettuce. While this may all prove to be quite a mouthful, it packs a huge flavor punch. If you want a good Greek fix without having to venture to a local pseudo-Greek eatery (where you may expect disappointment unless you live near a Greek mecca), give this recipe a try.

Chicken Gyros

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