FIFTEEN GUSTOS, “the Easter of the summer”, the month of the Virgin Mary, festivals, customs, but also good food. After the fifteen-day fast imposed by the Orthodox faith, the first thing on the table on the fifteenth of August is meat, which is supplemented with many other dishes of the Greek land and tradition. Below you will find some special recipes for the festive day, since in most regions of the country, high meats take center stage on the Panagia table.
Boureki, cooked on the fire, lamb meat, pilaf, fragrant handmade sausages, boiled meat, macaroni with grated dried flower cheese, dolmades with yogurt, stuffed pumpkin flowers, roasted on vines in the oven with potatoes more buds, table on the day of the fifteenth of August
Boiled goat with pilaf in Chania
The traditional pilaf is one of the dishes that is not missing from the table of the Chanio Fifteenth of August. It is usually prepared in large cauldrons. In Chania, along with red meat, they also add rooster or chicken to the pot. This simple recipe owes its flavor to the good quality of the meat. Older animals, such as goats and goats, give the tastiest broth. Boiled meat is always accompanied by pilaf and in many cases with yogurt. In Chania on these days meat is also consumed either in an oven with vines, or in the thraka, while in some villages we also find antikristo. The greens that are abundant in the Cretan land are a key ingredient on Panagia’s table, as are the traditional kaltsounia with cheese. Of course, wine, tsikoudia and racomelo are never missing from the table. On many Cretan tables, meat pies are also a basic side dish.
All the Cretan land on a table in Rethymnon
Boureki, cooked on the fire, lamb, pilaf, fragrant handmade sausages, boiled meat, macaroni with grated dry flower cheese, dolmades with yogurt, stuffed pumpkin flowers, grilled on vines at the table with potatoes more buds, are the most festive. on the day of the fifteenth of August. Salads are not missing from the table, green in season, with many herbs, mainly dill and basil, but also dakos, with breadcrumbs, grated tomato, oil, myzithra, coarse salt and oregano, as well as the graviera that rests edge, edge on every Cretan dish. All together, they are spread on the tablecloths, offering color, the smell of the abundant, hospitable, rich, Cretan land. When people’s backs are against the walls or their chairs, then it’s time for dessert… Baked apple, galaktoburek, buns, pies and cheese pies, pancake with honey, spoon sweets with yogurt and of course tsikoudia which also helps with digestion. Dominant on the Rethymnon table is the bureki. Borek, as it is also known in the neighboring country, Turkey, and means “small pie”. In fact, on the beaches of Smyrna and in Istanbul, there are not a few who confess the heritage they got from the Cretan kitchen and the recipes of the devices, never with variations and a lot of arbitrariness. The word bureki is indeed Turkish, but kolokythombureko is a pure Cretan recipe that is not missing from almost any home. With foil opened by hand, plenty of flour on the potatoes and pumpkins, finely chopped and mixed with mint, and plenty of homemade mizithra. The oven does not complete the art of the housewife, offering an amazing dish for which “bad reason” has been heard, as the grandmothers jokingly say.
The recipe for the burger:
Half a kilo of all-purpose flour, ½ cup of oil, 1 to 2 shots of chickpeas, a glass of water, salt, pepper, about 800 grams of potatoes cut into thin slices lengthwise, 800 grams of courgettes cut, like potatoes, finely chopped. , about 400 grams, if you want to scrape dry flower cheese as well. Be sure to add a large cup of flour, the same to oil, the same to yogurt, 4 eggs and keep sesame seeds aside to sprinkle over the foil before putting the bun in the oven. Make the dough by mixing the wet ingredients and the salt and slowly adding the flour. Rest the dough for half an hour. Wash the courgettes and cut them and similarly the potatoes. We pour the salt on them, drain them, the same for the potatoes. Divide the dough into two parts. The one part that we spread on the medium-sized baking sheet after we have oiled it well. We float covering the walls as well. Layer the filling ingredients starting with the potatoes, spread the flour, then the courgettes, spread the flour, rub the dried flower cheese, pour half the mint, spread half the mizithra, and again from the beginning of the next layer exactly the same as the first . … Beat the milk, oil and eggs and pour the mixture into the pan. We spread the rest of the dough over our ingredients. We push the dough into the walls to close the bun, add the sesame seeds, and cut it into the portions we will serve… cross it, and bake it at 180 degrees for an hour for sure. When the house and the yard or the terrace start to smell musty, serve red wine in glasses, wish those around you and enjoy the warm, just-out-of-the-oven bun… Whatever you have left over is still delicious and cool.
Recipe for roasting vine leaves in the oven:
As much meat, effort for your company, the ribs, arms and sides of a year old lamb are recommended. Put dried vine leaves in the pan… and spread over the meat, which will be dry. Nothing else… Turn on the oven at 180 degrees. As soon as it is heated, put the pan and turn the meat every quarter. After half an hour of baking, salt it with coarse salt on both sides. Nothing else… you how soft you want and turn off the oven. Leave the meat in the turned off oven for a quarter of an hour. Bon appetit and a healthy new year.
Traditional stew in Evia
The festival in the village of Oxylithos in Central Evia is special. In the context of the celebration of Panagia Petriotissa or Panagia Hatirianissa, the municipalities welcome them by serving them traditional stew. The inhabitants offer meat, onions, tomatoes, wine for its preparation and it is often said that there are more than 170 cauldrons where it is cooked. It is simmering from the eve. The custom is very old and was observed even in the Occupation, even if at that time they were made with whatever materials were available.
Pastitsada or Corfu
Every year on the fifteenth of August in Corfu, the famous pastitsada with rooster takes the lead on the festive table. A delicious dish that draws its roots from Venetian cuisine and today combines spaghetti with the rooster, while in the Venetian years it combined spaghetti with the “hunting” of the king. According to the traditional Corfu recipe, first begins the preparation of the rooster which, after browning in fresh butter, is sautéed with herbs, onions, garlic and spices. It is boiled on low heat with fresh tomato paste for at least two hours. Then the boiled spaghetti, preferably thick, is drained and sprinkled with a little oil, placed in a deep dish and the sauce with the pieces of rooster is poured over them. A common secret of the people of Corfu is cinnamon, which is added to almost all dishes with a red thickened sauce, while a sprinkling of plenty of grated cheese, which gives color and flavor, is needed for this particular dish. The Corfu pastitsada with rooster comes first in the preference of the visitors to Corfu during the fifteenth of August, while it is customary in many festivals on the island, to be baked and refused, as this particular celebration is considered as the small Easter of the summer.
In many islands of the Cyclades, such as e.g. Paros, Santorini, Ios and Sifnos, the traditional festive recipe is based on pork. The food is called “Cycladic roast”. Rosto is a dish of Italian origin, which includes meat with potatoes, carrots and mushrooms, served with thick spaghetti and provides two meals cooked in the same pot without the need to use an oven. Originally, spaghetti was served as a first course with red tomato sauce. Then the sliced meat was served, which was usually a cheap cut of pork instead of a breast, with potatoes, carrots and mushrooms. Pork roast with rosemary and beer, also found in Kefalonia, as well as in Cyprus, which is prepared with many types of meat, mainly game.