Greek cooking offers a dazzling array of greens, beans, and other vegetables-a vibrant, flavorful table that celebrates the seasons and regional specialties like none other. In this authoritative, exuberant cookbook, renowned culinary expert Diane Kochilas shares recipes for cold and warm mezes, salads, pastas and grains, stews and one-pot dishes, baked vegetable and bean specialties, stuffed vegetables, soups, savory pies and basic breads, and dishes that feature eggs. Brimming with classic dishes, regional favorites, and inspired innovations, The Greek Vegetarian pays tribute to one of the world's most venerable and healthful cuisines.
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In Ithaca, the villagers so revere the olive that they give names to the olive trees that bear them. We're not talking upstate New York here, but Greece, the land that gave us rosy-fingered dawns and spanakopita. Diane Kochilas gives us the Greek way with vegetables in The Greek Vegetarian, and she should be given some kind of humanitarian award for the effort. For anyone fussing over increasing greens, vegetables, and grains while reducing the place of meat in the usual American diet, The Greek Vegetarian is a place of comfort and repose, a place to settle back in the sun and flip through the pages and let the deliciousness of all these wonderful food ideas lap over your life like warm waves from the Aegean Sea.
There are 100 recipes herein, and they come from the traditions of Greek cuisine. No one is stretching just to make a dish vegetarian (oh, OK: there's one recipe for vegetarian souvlaki). Only recently have Greeks gained the dubious title of biggest meat eaters in Europe, and even then all they did, according to the author, was make their plates bigger for the added meat. They still eat a diet rich in vegetables. Always have; always will.
But some specifics. Kochilas divides her book into Meze, the little dishes of Greece, and Main Meals, the pastas, soups, stews, casseroles, savory pies and breads, the egg dishes. There's Beet and Apple Salad with a Yogurt Dressing, for starters. How about Roasted Eggplant and Chickpea Salad? Or Arugula Salad with Wrinkled Olives and Orange Slices? The Classic Greek Bean Soup is included. So too is a dish of Potatoes Stewed with Kalamata Olives. The possibilities build, one upon the other. This book bursts with flavor the same way a vine-ripened, sun-warmed tomato bursts at the first bite. It will dribble down your chin if you're not careful. --Schuyler IngleFrom the Publisher:
"Delicious and lively...Here is the rare cookbook I'd like to cook my way through, front to back." --Michelle Huneven, Los Angeles Times
"This is the loveliest cookbook imaginable, full of splendid recipes and lore, and moreover just shining with Diane Kochilas's intelligent passion for the cuisines of Greece." --Nancy Harmon Jenkins, author of The Mediterranean Diet Cookbook
"The Greek Vegetarian is an important book, because it brings together a broad spectrum of vibrant, healthy, delicious dishes. Diane Kochilas manages to cover a lot of Greek territory here, yet she never leaves us behind." --Martha Rose Shulman, author of Mediterranean Light and Mexican Light
"A gifted storyteller and inspired cook, Diane Kochilas has brought the heart, soul, and spirit of the Greek table to us. The recipes are both mouthwatering and simple to prepare. I love this book." --Marie Simmons, author of Rice, the Amazing Grain and Fresh & Fast
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