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Traditional Greek recipes for a Scottish St Andrew’s Day celebration

Traditional Greek recipes for a Scottish St Andrew’s Day celebration

A Scottish friend is celebrating St Andrews Day at home in Scotland with family and friends and has been asking for some Greek recipes to bring a little bit of Mediterranean warmth and interest to the evening. Of course St Andrew is the patron saint of both Scotland and Greece, so I thought this would be a lovely opportunity to explore an alliance at the dinner table! What would a Greek – Scottish menu look like and has anyone ever done it before? Hilary has some regular Scottish dishes that she’d like to include on the table – smoked salmon for starters and cranachan for dessert. She also said she was wondering about lamb for the main. So here in the kitchen at The Olive Farm, I’ve had a think about what might work to make this a real Greek feast. Here’s what I came up with for the menu. See below for the recipes.

St Andrew’s Day Menu

Starters

• Scottish smoked salmon
• Greek Green salad: shredded Romaine lettuce, dill and spring onion with a thyme honey, extra virgin olive oil and white wine vinegar dressing

Wine: Chablis – Malagouzia, Moschofilero or Roditis (greek varieties) – Chardonnay

Main Course

St Andrews day meal - lamb

• Cretan Boureki: Potatoes, marrow (or pumpkin) and chopped fresh mint baked in a shortcrust pie, with feta and ricotta cheese.
• Lamb casserole with thyme honey and sage — served with Steamed Carrots and broccoli – drizzled with extra virgin olive oil.This is an ancient Greek recipe originating from the Minoan civilization (3650 to 1400 BCE)

Serve it with rumbledethumps  (a Scottish dish with mashed potato and cabbage), Steamed carrots and broccoli drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and coarse sea salt
Wine: A light smooth medium dry red to match the honey in the main dish – usually varieties such as zinfandel, merlot, grenache, lambrusco, kotsifali.

Dessert

• Cranachan with Greek thyme honey. Serve with Drambuie

Cretan Boureki

Boureki stage 2A Cretan classic originating in the town of Chania.
In Northern Greece as well as the balkans Boureki refers to something wrapped in filo pastry. In Crete however, boureki refers to a short crust pastry pie with layers of courgettes(marrow or pumkin), potatoes and cheese with hints of mint. The cheese used is a local type, hard to find elsewhere, mizithra. Find out more here in our blog all about Cretan cheese.  As an alternative, a mixture of feta cheese and ricotta may be used – a combination that develops almost the same texture and flavour.
Boureki tastes great at room temperature and can even be served the next day. It may be served as an appetizer or as part of the main meal.
Ingredients
(Serves 8-10)

For the pastry: Prepare two thick pastry sheets one for the top one for the bottom o

f the bake
500 gr all purpose flour
½ cup of extra virgin olive oil
1 egg
1 pinch of salt
1 shot of raki (Cretan spirit) can substitute with vodka
1 cup of lukewarm water or as much as the dough needs

For the filling
½ cup of extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cups of whole milk
2 cups of ricotta cheese
2 Tbsp. of all-purpose flour
2 cups of crumbled Feta cheese
Ground black pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped mint (2 Tbsp. of dried)
Approx. 6 medium sized potatoes
Approx. 6 long slender zucchinis/courgettes (may substitute with marrow or pumpkin)
3-4 Tbsp. sesame seeds
1 egg

Boureki stage 7Preparation

For the pastry: In a mixing bowl add the flour, beaten egg, olive oil, the raki and some of the water. Start mixing and slowly add the remaining water as long as the pastry requires more. Mix until smooth and uniform. With the kneading and the folding around the pastry will start to form and thicken, keep kneading and folding continuously until you are left with a soft, smooth elastic dough. Cover with a clean towel and set aside. Preheat the oven to 180oC
When the filling is prepared roll out two sheets of pastry in a flat surface.

For the filling:
Use a mandolin and cut the potatoes and zucchinis (or pumpkin) in thin slices. Place in a mixing bowl and add the salt.
Grease a 12”x 9” deep rectangular baking dish with extra virgin olive oil and place one sheet of pastry.
Start placing a layer of slightly overlapping slices at the bottom of the dish. Mix the cheese, milk, olive oil, salt and pepper into a smooth mixture and pour some of it over the layer of vegetables. Start assembling the boureki by alternating layers of veggies and pouring the cheese mixture over until the dish is full. Once each layer is done sprinkle some mint before you prepare the next one.
At the top place the second pastry sheet, brush with a beaten egg and sprinkle with sesame. Place in a preheated oven and bake for 40 min at 180oC, or until golden and most of the liquid has been absorbed. Allow to cool at room temperature before serving. Try it before you decide if it’s baked or not. The vegetables need to be soft and most of the liquid should have been absorbed. If necessary bake for longer.

Wine selection: a dry white, xerolithia, malagouzia or vidiano varieties (Greek), or a bottle of Chablis or Sancerre, for easier to find French options.

Lamb with honey and sage

A Cretan dish originating from the times of the Minoan civilasation (circa 3650 – 1450 BCE).
Ingredients
(serves 4 – 6 people)
1 kgr of lamb (young)
1 large onion
1 cup of olive oil
1 ½ cup of red wine
Whole shallots (optional)
Two pieces of orange peel
1-2 bay leaf
Small piece of cinnamon stick
3 – 4 Tbsps. of Greek thyme honey (possibly a bit more)
5 – 6 sage leafs (the Cretan sage is strong so we are only using a small amount, if grown elsewhere may use more)
Salt and pepper

Preparation

This dish is cooked on the stove. Add the olive oil in a large relatively shallow casserole (pot) place the pieces of meat and cook until golden brown along with the chopped onion. Add the bay leaf, orange peel cinnamon, whole shallots, slat and pepper and cook for a further 2-3 min. Add the wine and lower the temperature, add a half a cup of water (if needed add more later on), cover and let it shimmer/cook slowly for about 45 min. When the meat has cooked about half way add the honey and the sage. Shimmer until the sauce thickens. If needed add a bit of corn flour in the end to thicken the sauce further.
Serve with glazed or roast vegetables drizzled with olive oil, and Scottish rumbledthumbs.
Wine: A light smooth medium dry red to match the honey in the main dish – usually varieties such as zinfandel, merlot, grenache, lambrusco, kotsifali.

Scottish Cranachan with a Greek twist

Cranachan 1

Ingredients
(serves 6)
110g rolled oats or pinhead oatmeal
280ml double cream
300g Greek yogurt instead of crowdie
6 tbsp Greek Thyme honey
6 tbsp malt Scottish whisky
1 bag frozen raspberries, defrosted
Fresh berries – whatever is in season

Preparation
Place the oats in a large frying pan and cook over a medium high heat, stirring constantly, for 5-8 minutes until they turn brown and smell toasty. We added a bit of demerara sugar and gave it a bit of a sweet crunch.
Tip on to a plate to cool.
Whip the double cream until stiff peaks are formed.
Mix 5 tbsp honey and all the whisky.
Crush the raspberries with a fork into a mush.
Layer the cream, yogurt, oats and raspberry mush in six glasses, alternating with the whisky and honey sauce, finishing with a dribble of honey, some oats and a few of the berries.
Eat immediately or keep in the fridge.