Louvanosalata – Λουβανοσαλάτα


Μετάφραση πιο κάτω

In Cyprus when the plant of louvana is tender, it is made into a green salad which is called louvanosalata.  I am sure that my Cypriot friends are expecting the recipe for that salad but this time I have used the vetch to make this dip.  I call it salata (salad) because most Greek dips end in ….salata e.g. melitzanosalata, taramosalata, etc.

Louvana (Lathyrus ochrus), also known as Cyprus Vetch, is sometimes confused with yellow split peas (pisum sativum) or Greek fava (lathyrus clymenum). However, this dip can be made with any of the above pulses.

You can see below some of the ingredients I have used to make this dip:  tahini, Greek yoghurt, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, green onions, capers, parsley etc.

You will find the recipe in my cookbook Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopitaste!

Όταν τα φύλλα του φυτού της λουβάνας είναι τρυφερά, στην Κύπρο τα χρησιμοποιούμε σαν ωμή, πράσινη σαλάτα, η οποία λέγεται λουβανοσαλάτα.

Βέβαια δεν είναι αυτή η κλασσική σαλάτα, αλλά μια σαλάτα μου έφτιαξα με λουβάνα ξερή, δηλαδή το όσπριο.  Η Κυπριακή λουβάνα (Lathyrus ochrus), μοιάζει με τη φάβα (lathyrus clymenum), αλλά είναι ένα διαφορετικό λαθούρι, το ίδιο νόστιμο.

Αυτό το ντίπ είναι δική μου συνταγή και το έχω δοκιμάσει και με τα δύο λαθούρια και είναι εξίσου νόστιμο.

Ό,ποτε φτιάχνω σούπα λουβάνα, πάντα βράζω περισσοτερη και την αποθηκεύω στην κατάψυξη και έτσι το φτιάχνω χωρίς κόπο σε πολύ λίγο χρόνο.  Βλέπετε στη φωτογραφία μερικά από τα υλικά που έβαλα σ’ αυτό το ντιπ, όπως γιαούρτι, ταχίνι, ελαιόλαδο, λεμόνι, κρεμμυδάκια φρέσκα, κάπαρη, μαϊντανό κλπ.

Η συνταγή περιλαμβάνεται στο βιβλίο μου.
Kopiaste and Kali Orexi / Κοπιάστε και Καλή Όρεξη!

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Eliopita with Walnuts, Feta & Rosemary


Μετάφραση της συνταγής στο τέλος.

Cypriot Eliopita is made by rolling a big piece of phyllo and filling it with olives, onions and aromatic herbs which is then made into a roulade.

The recipe for the phyllo is not quite the same as other types of phyllos as it is kneaded with , fresh orange juice.  You can either make it into a roulade or make smaller Eliopitakia (turnovers).

You will find the recipe for the traditional Eliopita, Eliopitakia and Eliopsomo in my Cookbook “Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopiaste” as well as in Volume 2 of my e-book.

I loved the combination of feta with rosemary and not long after I made “Eliopsomo” another Cypriot recipe, which is an olive bread making my own twists.  You can find the recipe here.

Eliopita with Walnuts, Feta, Rosemary, recipe by Ivy

Phyllo dough

For the filling:

500 grams throumbes olives, pitted and cut (or substitute with Kalamata olives)

1 red onion, finely chopped

100 grams feta

3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Fresh coriander, finely chopped

A handful of walnuts

Black pepper

A pinch of salt

Poppy seeds, to sprinkle on top

Directions: 

Prepare dough and set aside to rest for half an hour.

Mix all the filling ingredients together except the poppy seeds.

When the dough is ready roll out into a thin phyllo and spread the filling all over and roll to form into a roulade.

Brush with egg wash or olive oil and sprinkle some sesame seeds on top.

Bake in a preheated oven to 180o C / 350o F, for about 50 minutes.

Η ελιόπιτα είναι μια παραδοσιακή Κυπριακή συνταγή που γίνεται με φύλλο, διαφορετικό από τα συνηθισμένα γιατί ζυμώνεται με χυμό πορτοκαλιού.  Η γέμιση είναι νηστίσιμη και εκτός από ελιές, περιέχει κρεμμύδι και κάποια μυρωδικά.  Η παραδοσιακή συνταγή βρίσκεται στο βιβλίο μου.

Ελιόπιτα με Καρύδια, Φέτα και Δενδρολίβανο, συνταγή της Ήβης

Υλικά:

Φύλλο

Για τη γέμιση:

500 γραμμάρια ελιές θρούμπες ή Καλαμών

1 κοκκίνο κρεμμύδι, ψιλοκομμένο

100 γραμμάρια φέτα

3 κουταλιές ελαιόλαδο

Φρέσκο κόλιανδρο

Μία χούφτα καρύδια

Φρεσκοτριμμένο μαύρο πιπέρι

Μια πρέζα αλάτι

Παπαρουνόσπορο, για από πάνω

Εκτέλεση: 

Ετοιμάζουμε τη ζύμη και την αφήνουμε να ξεκουραστεί.

Ανακατεύουμε όλα τα υλικά εκτός από τον παπαρουνόσπορο.

Ανοίγουμε ένα λεπτό φύλλο και απλώνουμε τη γέμιση.  Το τυλίγουμε σε ρολό.

Βουρτσίζουμε σε ρολό ή με ελαιόλαδο και πασπαλίζουμε με τον παπαρουνόσπορο.

Ψήνουμε σε προθερμασμένο φούρνο στους 180o C / 350o F, for about 50 minutes, μέχρι να ροδίσει.


Kopiaste and Kali Orexi,

Kollyva: wheat berries dessert?


On March 3rd was my mother-in-law’s 40 days “Mnemosyno”.     (A mnemosyno is a special service held in the Orthodox Church for the repose of the souls of the dead).  “Kollyva”, which are prepared by the closest of kin of the deceased, are given at mnemosyna. Boiled barley wheat berries, usually sweetened, are highly symbolic and represent the soul of the deceased and symbolize everlasting life. Wheat represents the life cycle of death and regeneration.  You may read more details about this, in my original post.

 View from Nafplio

We left from Athens early on Saturday morning and passed from Nafplion and Assini as we had some things to deal regarding our house and then went to Sparti.  Although it was a beautiful, sunny weekend, it was very cold and there was snow everywhere.

Taygettus Mountain (Sparti)

We arrived there, around 2 p.m. and after lunch at 4 p.m. there was a service at the graveside.  After a short service by the priest, “kollyva” were offered to those attending.  (The picture is of kollyva I made during Psychosavvato, a few weeks before.  Unfortunately I do not have a picture of the ones offered at he mnemosyno which were bought from a confectionery shop at Sparta, decorated with silver dragees).    The store bought ones do look much prettier but tastewise, the ones I make are by far better, at least that’s what those who have tasted mine, told me.

This time I made them slightly different than the recipe in my cookbook.  I boiled the wheat berries with orange peel, a bay leaf and anise seeds.  I also added fresh coriander and a mixture of spices and powdered cookies.

Apart from the religious, ritual background behind this food, this is really something which you should try.  You can find the recipe in my cookbook  Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopiaste,  page 132, as well as in Volume 2 of the e-cookbook.

It is listed under desserts because it is sweet (but not overly sweet) and very delicious and it is such a pity we only make this during such unpleasant occasions.  It is healthy and you can eat it any time of the day as a dessert, for breakfast or as a snack.

As is the custom, there is a gathering either at home but usually at a “kafeneio” (coffee shop) where Greek coffee, brandy and paximadia (sweet rusks) are offered to those attending the service.

On Sunday the memorial service takes place at church, after the divine liturgy, where kollyva are also offered when the service is over and close relatives and friends are invited for lunch.

On Saturday evening, after the visit to the coffee shop, we went back home and for several hours we (my three sister-in-laws and I) had to make the preparation for the food to be served the next day at my brother-in-law’s taverna, for about 60 people.   13 kilos of fresh octopus was washed, cleaned, cut and cooked.  1 kilo of taramas was made into Taramosalata and lots of cabbage was cut into very thin slices to make salads the following day.  The only thing which was cooked on Sunday was 12 kilos of spaghetti which was served together with the braised octopus.

My husband was not feeling very well.   He went and lied down but the pain increased and after a couple of hours it was intolerable.    He had an acute pain in the abdomen which spread towards the chest and his back.  My son and I took him to the hospital around 10 p.m.  

After lots of blood tests, a cardiograph and X-rays, there was no sign that there was any problem with his heart so a surgeon was called to examine him as well.  He was injected with a pain relief and after more tests, it was diagnozed that he gallbladder was irritated and had to stay in hospital for treatment.

My son was traveling Monday morning for England so my husband did not want to stay in Sparta.  After signing that he was being released on his own will, we finally went back home at 04:30 a.m.

Unfortunately we missed the church service and mnemosyno.  We woke up around 9 o’clock and had to find a drug store to buy pain relief pills which the doctor had prescribed before leaving the hospital.

We went to the taverna as all relatives were concerned, as by then they were informed that we passed the evening in the ER.

Unfortunately I was not in the mood of taking pictures and after lunch we returned to Athens.  My son left on Monday and an appointment was fixed with the doctor on Monday afternoon.  He wanted him at the hospital first thing on Tuesday morning where he was hospitalized for a week, until Monday morning, where he was treated with antibiotics and other medicine.

He is now on a strict low-fat diet and on the 24th April he has a new appointment for a new assessment and probably he will undergo surgery.

Kopiaste and Kali Orexi,

Tyrompiskota (Cheesy Shortbread Savory Cookies) Τυρομπισκότα


Μετάφραση της συνταγής στο τέλος.

Today’s recipe is a recipe I made two years ago on Tyrini, which is on the last Sunday before Orthodox Lent, which is tomorrow.

These savory cookies are based on other shortbread cookies I have made in the past.  They are very easy to make and  I added two of my favourite cheeses, halloumi and graviera and a combination of various spices and herbs on top, which made them disappear in no time.

These cookies are ideal with a cup of coffee or tea but also with a cold beer or a glass of wine.

They are very versatile so the combination of cheeses can vary by adding kefalotyri, kefalograviera, kaskavalli, ladotyri Mytilinis or other hard cheeses and spices which you like best.

 

You can find the recipe and other “cheesy” recipes here.

On this day the tradition in my house is to make Cypriot Ravioles for lunch but I also make cheesy snacks like Tyropita, Halloumopita, Flaounes (actually we make little ones called Flaounoudes), Tyropita Savory Cake, Psomakia Gemista (Halloumi filled bread), Cheese souffle, Tyropitakia and desserts like galaktompoureko,  ryzogalo, Bourekia me Anari etc.

All the above recipes are included in my cookbook Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopiaste as well as in the e-cookbook.

Τα αλμυρά αυτά μπισκοτάκια τα έκανα πριν δύο χρόνια όταν ήταν και πάλι Τυρινή.

Η συνταγή είναι απλή και βασίζεται πάνω σε άλλα μπισκότα βουτύρου που έχω φτιάξει κατά το παρελθόν.  Απλώς έβαλα τα αγαπημένα μου τυριά, που είναι το χαλούμι και η γραβιέρα και τα αγαπημένα μου μπαχαρικά και αρωματικά.

Τρώγονται σαν σνακ ή συνοδευτικό με καφέ, τσάι, αναψυκτικό ή μια κρύα μπύρα ή ένα ποτηράκι κρασί.

Μπορείτε να βάλετε άλλα τυριά όπως κεφαλοτύρι, κεφαλογραβιέρα, κασκαβάλλι, λαδοτύρι Μυτιλήνης ή άλλα σκληρά τυριά  και τα δικά σας αγαπημένα μπαχαρικά.

Μπορείτε να βρείτε αυτή τη συνταγή και άλλες συνταγές για την Τυρινή εδώ.

Kopiaste and Kali Orexi – Κοπιάστε, Καλή Όρεξη και Καλή Σαρακοστή,

How to self publish your e-books on Amazon


My first attemps to convert my Cookbook into an e-book was not easy. I started on Amazon Kindle but found the instructions very complicated. There was too much information there, which gave me a headache each time I started reading it.

After reading many tutorials and forum threads, someone mentioned on the Amazon forum that there is a great tutorial on Smashwords and they were absolutely right. If you follow their instructions it is 100% guaranteed that you will succeed to publish your e-book.

However Amazon is AMAZON!!!!, if you know what I mean and who wouldn’t want to be visible on one of the biggest sites on the web?

I know I did and I finally made it a couple of days ago and now my e-cookbooks are available on all Amazon stores!!

If you want to self publish here is a synopsis of what I have learned during the course of self publishing my e-cookbook Volume 1 and Volume 2 and if the information provided is incomplete, you can also download and find more information on the Kindle Publishing Guide:

A. Prepare your manuscript

  • Make a list of all the recipes you want to include. Arrange them either in alphabetical order or sort them into categories.
  • Add the recipes from your files or blog.
  • When done, highlight everything with Control A to copy content. Open Notepad and left shift or Control V to paste content. This will remove any formats or links.
  • Open a new word document and Save As .doc (not docx)
  • Prepare a Table of Content and add links.
  • Do not add page numbers, headers or footers or symbols.
  • Use Styles to format your document. Do not use a font size bigger than 14.
  • Do not use more than one line breaks. If you want to change a line do not press enter more than once.
  • After each recipe use a Page Break and add a link to your Table of Content.

B. Adding photos

  • Do not copy paste a picture but add each picture from Insert / Picture.
  • Do not resize it by dragging the picture from the corners. Resize your photos on Photoshop, Picassa or Gimp. The image should be a minimum 500 pixels wide and 1280 pixels high.
  • In the member’s area of the Kindle Desktop Publishing website there is a tutorial for formatting your manuscript document. Read through that document and follow the directions to make sure that your e-book displays properly.
  • Make sure that you carefully edit and proofread your book’s manuscript before you upload it.
  • Prepare you Book Cover.

C. Create a free account on the Kindle Desktop Publishing platform

Go to KDP/Amazon and sign up for a free publisher account.

D. Create your profile

Create your profile on Author Central

E. Publish your e-book

Write a concise and compelling description of your e-book and upload it to the Kindle Store. Last step: set your price, “Save and Publish” and if you have done everything correct you are now an AA, no not that kind of AA but an Amazon Author.

I used to think that you needed a Kindle device to read Kindle e-books but found out after publishing that you can download Kindle Cloud, which is a free application where you can read kindle books on your browser, even if you are not online.

Hope my article was useful to you but if you need more help, do not hesitate to contact me.

On a last note, if you have already purchased my book in print, my e-book on Smashwords or you have won a copy or it was sent to you as a gift or if you intend to buy one in the future, PLEASE write a sincere review.  You know that reviews are helpful to potential buyers, so please take a minute and write your review either on AMAZON or on SMASHWORDS.

Kopiaste and Kali Orexi!