We all know that Greek food is to die for, right? Today, we continue our celebration of Susannah Hardy’s latest release, Olive or Let Die.
So tell us, Wickeds–What’s your favorite Greek food? Greek restaurant? Where did you first eat Greek food?
Liz: I worked with a woman years ago who had married into a Greek family. Though she no longer was, her two children enjoyed the traditional food, so she continued to cook and bake it. And lucky for our office, she brought in lots of goodies. I have no idea what half the things were called, but they were all delightful – and she made a mean baklava!
Jessie: As far as I know, I’m not Greek. When I was a child I had a friend named Cassie whose father was Greek. Her grandmother simply would not believe I wasn’t Greek too. Every time she visited my friend she would ask “How’s your little Greek friend.” Cassie would reply, “Yaya, she’s not Greek!”. Yaya would shake her head and say, “It’s so sad when folks forget their own people.”
One day Cassie called to tell me Yaya was visiting and insisting that I come over. She was teaching Cassie how to make Spanakopita, an astonishingly delicious spinach and feta pie-type dish. Yaya said every good Greek girl needed to know how to make it and that included me. How could I refuse? I still have the recipe card written in my twelve-year-old handwriting in my recipe box. I’m still not Greek but I do make a mean Spanakopita. Thanks, Yaya!
Edith: One of my best friends in grad school was a big guy named Marios Fourakis. He realized he couldn’t afford to eat out, so he wrote his mother in Thessaloniki and asked for her recipes. What a treat to go to Marios’s house for dinner. Much bourbon would be consumed, and we wouldn’t eat until about ten PM, but then we’d have avgolemono, broiled lamb bones with oregano, or homemade (including the phyllo dough) cheese and meat and spinach spanakopita. Died and gone to heaven!
Barb: Your reminisces made me remember that when I was young I babysat for a doctor whose family name was Christopoulis. The husband’s mother used to send them the best baklava! But really, I don’t remember eating much Greek food until my post-college trip that included Greece. Everything was fresh and local. The salads had no lettuce, just the best tomatoes, peppers, onions, feta, ever. But my favorite was moussaka. Oh my. Like I’d died and gone to foodie heaven. I did eventually learn to make it myself, though I haven’t in a long while. Just typing this is making me hungry.
Sherry: The first Greek food I made was baklava and found it wasn’t really that hard — using store bought phyllo. I’m not sure when I first ate Greek food — sometime well into adulthood — but it was, as they say, love at first bite. When we lived in San Pedro, California there was a wonderful Greek restaurant called Papadakis. We walked in and a handsome man (Mr. Papadakis) took my hand, kissed it, and then led us to our table. The food was excellent but the atmosphere made it even better.
Julie: Jessie, I know what you need to make on the next Orchard retreat! Favorite Greek food? I really can’t. Especially real Greek food, where even a salad is a delightful palette experience. I love fresh feta, good baklava, real pita, stuffed grape leaves. Is there bad Greek food?
Readers: What’s your favorite Greek food? Greek restaurant? Where did you first eat Greek food?