Kunefe

in Desserts, Taste -

Kunefe-5

I’m back y’all! The past couple of weeks have been spent in a frantic wedding prep haze, equally filled with joy, bickering, tension and excitement. We’re tying the knot in a couple of days and since I’ve now crossed off most of what needs to be done of dozens of lists, I’m finally ready to come back to my favourite place, with one of my favourite recipes: kunefe!

Kunefe

Kunefe

I’ve I’ve been meaning to make kunefe for quite some time now. I love all desserts made with pastry of some sort, but I reserve a particularly sweet spot for those drenched in sugar as well. Knowing that kunefe has all of the above, plus a cheese filling makes me giddy just thinking about it!

Things are pretty easy, pretty simple and pretty damn delicious here guys: shredded phyllo dough (I love working with this!), feta cheese to balance out the sweetness of the syrup, toasted pistachios and bam! We’ve got a dessert! Isn’t that something? Isn’t that all we need to get back to some goddamn normalcy and prepare for fall?

Kunefe

Kunefe-6

Kunefe-3

Kunefe

INGREDIENTS

500gr shredded phyllo dough

250 gr unsalted butter, melted

300 gr feta cheese

150 gr ricotta cheese

1/2 cups pistachios, toasted and roughly chopped

syrup:

300 ml water

450 gr sugar

juice from one medium lemon

METHOD

Start by making the syrup: combine all the ingredients in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook for 5′, allowing the sugar to dissolve, turn off the heat, remove from the stove and let it cool completely.

Preheat the oven to 180 C (160C for air) and brush a large baking pan with butter.

Take the pastry off the package and work it with your fingers to make it fluffy. Pour the melted butter all over and work on it again to make it all wet.

Divide into two and line the baking pan with half of it, evening it out with your hands. Top with the cheese, leaving a small margin all around. Sprinkle with half the pistachios and top with the remaining buttered dough.

Bake for about 40′, or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and pour the cold syrup over it.

Once the syrup has been absorbed, top with the remaining pistachios and let it sit for about 10′ and serve.

Food for thought

in More -

Watermelon-1

I’ve spent the first half of this week in Athens, doing all sorts of wedding prep and cursing (over the heat and said prep); the second half was spent mostly by the beach, re-reading Around the World in Eighty Days, dreaming of India and Phileas Fogg as my wedding planner. Here’s to a dreamy, stress-free weekend! [READ MORE]

Food for thought

in More -

Food for thought

The wedding frenzy part of the summer is well underway; yesterday, Alkyoni and I arrived in Ionnina, a beautiful city in north-western Greece, for one of our closest friends’ wedding. As we haven’t been here in many years, we’re anxious to catch up with friends, explore the city, visit the small island located in Ioannina lake and eat our weight in savoury pies and local desserts. While doing all and practicing my rusty Spanish and French with some of the guests, I’m also getting jittery about our own wedding. It’s coming up in less than a month and here’s a few things that have so far inspired my planning:

An easy way to a beautiful flower bouquet.

Vintage jewelry as a hair accessory? Yes please!

On the same note, easy breezy hairstyles, perfect for summer.

If we manage to take a small break from the wedding preparations, we’ll escape to Skiathos; it’s one of the most beautiful, greenest Greek islands and where we took our first holiday together, seven summers ago.

Alkyoni is making the crowns we’ll be wearing during the ceremony and has been getting lots of inspiration here.

Very chic coral earrings, perfect for a laid back summer wedding attire.

Annoying wedding guests (damn, I think I may be ticking a couple of these boxes).

We’re not doing a wedding cake (I don’t know what we’re doing instead), but if we were, it would be a toss between this molten chocolate cake and this berry pistachio cheesecake. Or we’d just have both. Maybe we should.

* The most beautiful card for this happy couple, hand crafted by the most talented girl, Myrto. I wish I came up with things like that when I was 18.

Quinoa beetroot salad (Rocabella Hotel Mykonos)

in Savoury, Taste -

Forget about the breathtaking views, super stylish rooms and impeccable service: the real bomb in Rocabella Hotel Mykonos is the food! I couldn’t be happier sharing the recipe for one of their signature dishes with you, as it’s exactly the way I like it: delicious (trust me, I’ve been making it on repeat), colourful, fresh and super easy to make. If, like me, you can’t make the trip to Mykonos this year, we can at least enjoy this beautiful salad over and over again!

[READ MORE]

Rocabella Hotel Mykonos

in The Others -

One of the best hotel experiences I’ve ever had was in Rocabella Mykonos: gorgeous views, beautiful architecture, bright, clean rooms tastefully decorated and the friendliest staff I’ve ever come across. And don’t even get me started on the menu and cocktails! I’ve only been to this one, but judging from photos, its little sibling in Santorini must be equally stunning. Lucky for me, it just so happens that one of the people running this family business is my friend Roy Kalfopoulou. I met Roy years back in London and she’s one of the kindest, warmest and most generous people ever. She’s been around the hotel since day one and lately has been focusing on all press related actions, as well as everything regarding the hotel’s image and style. Not surprisingly, when I visited the hotel a couple summers ago, her hospitality was spot on, a perfect match for the hotel’s gorgeous serenity and impeccable service. The secret to their success? Read on…

Rocabella Hotel Mykonos

Rocabella Hotel Mykonos [READ MORE]

Food for thought

in More -

veggies-1

I’m back home for the summer and my days are now filled with faces I’ve been missing for far too long, blinding sun, hot weather and familiar songs. Food wise, I’ve been overwhelmed by my mom’s terrific dishes once again, the beautiful fresh produce in our local farmers market and all the ice cream and cheese pies I can get my hands on. Needless to say, I’m already a little heavier and a lot inspired, so expect lots more new fresh and delicious recipes coming your way in the days to follow. In the meantime, here’s a few bits and pieces from around the web, all Greece-related, to match my current state. [READ MORE]

Beet, feta & thyme tart tatin

in Savoury, Taste -

Beet tart tatin-1-2

This beet, feta & thyme tart tatin ticks is so easy and delicious, I’m really confused as to why it’s taken me so long to come up with. Gorgeous beets, flakey, buttery pastry, salty feta and fresh thyme- check. Easy, quick and fuss free cooking- check again. Tons of flavour and gorgeous to look at- triple check! This one’s a winner y’ all! Let’s talk beets for a second: gorgeous colours, beautiful texture both when raw and cooked, slightly sweet, they really are lovely whichever way you decide to take: chips, soup, smoothie or combined with summery zucchini and manchego– you really can’t go wrong with these beauties. Especially when you keep them almost whole and make them the star of a tart tatin show. [READ MORE]

Food for thought

in More -

Food for thought

Yesterday’s tragedy in Nice has left me once again numb, sad and kinda desperate. I’m trying to come to terms with the fact that our world is a dark dark place, while remembering that there’s still light to be found- or at least there should be and we need to cherish it. On that note, here’s a few Food for thought links for y’ all, because, dammit, it’s summer and we need to stand up to violence, fear and insanity. Stay positive, stay cool. [READ MORE]

Baked peaches & mascarpone

in Breakfast, Desserts, Taste -

Baked peaches & mascarpone

When summer approaches and along with it come all the beautiful seasonal fruit, peaches somehow escape me at first. I go crazy over strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries; I’m smitten with nectarines and then, in the middle of said love affairs, I see peaches. And every time, I just can’t explain why the escape me- especially the small, flat ones. They are so cute and pretty and aromatic, I want to grab all of them, take them home, look at them for a few days and then play with their soft, pink skin. Are you with me? [READ MORE]

Food for thought

in More -

Food for thought

Last Friday, my amazing girlfriends took me to Côte d’Azur for a very long, very relaxing, very fun weekend, which officially marks the beginning of our wedding festivities. Our four days spent in the gorgeous sun started with a long breakfast, continued with lazy sessions by the pool and carried on with visits to beautiful little villages, dinners in Cannes and Nice, too much wine, cheese, ice cream, giggling and beautiful conversation. I came back forever grateful and with a renewed appetite- hence this week’s Food for thought, which features food & drink links. [READ MORE]