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Oman Dining: Go Greek this week
December 11, 2017 | 7:25 PM
by Oneza Tabish
Tzatziki is a creamy, delightful Greek dressing which can be served as a dip and a sauce for wraps or sandwiches.
 
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TZATZIKI

It is a creamy, delightful Greek dressing made with yoghurt, garlic, cucumber, and olive oil preferably. It is also served as a dip and a sauce for wraps or sandwiches.

INGREDIENTS

1/2 large cucumber, unpeeled



1 1/2 cups plain full-fat Greek

yoghurt

2 large garlic cloves, finely minced

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon white vinegar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon minced fresh dill

PREPARATION

Grate the cucumber and drain thoroughly. Keep in the refrigerator overnight. Combine the yoghurt, garlic, oil, vinegar, and salt in a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Transfer the grated cucumber and fresh dill to the yoghurt mixture and stir to combine. Serve chilled with pita bread for dipping.

SPANAKORIZO

A traditional recipe with few ingredients, this classic Greek spinach-and-rice dish can be a one-pot meal or a side dish.

INGREDIENTS

1 bunch spring onions (chopped)

1/3 cup olive oil

1kg spinach (chopped, washed, drained)

1 1/3 cups water

1 1/3 cups long-grain rice

5 1/4 cups water

Salt to taste

Pepper to taste

2 tablespoons lemon juice

PREPARATION

In a pot, sauté the chopped spring onions in the oil over medium heat for 8-10 minutes. Add spinach and 1 1/3 cups of water and cook until the spinach wilts. Add rice and 5 1/4 cups of water, bring to a boil, and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in lemon juice and salt, cook for another 5 minutes and remove from heat. Serve hot with wedges of lemon and freshly ground pepper.

HOMEMADE GYRO

Marinated lamb/beef sausages are grilled to perfection and are wrapped with warm pita, and topped with a creamy tzatziki sauce and fresh veggies.

INGREDIENTS

For Meat mixture

1 pound ground lamb (or beef)

1/4 cup finely chopped onion

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 1/2 teaspoons cumin

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1 teaspoon dried oregano

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

For the Sandwich

4 pita breads

1 leaf of lettuce

1 tomato, sliced

1 onion, sliced

Tzatziki sauce

PREPARATION

Thoroughly combine all the ingredients for meat mixture in a bowl. Divide into four equal portion sausages to fit into the pita. Refrigerate for an hour till spices combine with the meat.

Either fry these sausages or grill them till well done. Now build the gyro sandwich by spreading tzatziki sauce down the centre of a flat round bread. Add a lettuce leaf, some diced tomato, and a few thin onion slices. Add the grilled or fried meat sausages, fold the bread and enjoy.

TRADITIONAL GREEK BAKLAVA

Baklava is a delicious traditional Greek dessert made of layers of crispy golden brown phyllo, filled with chopped nuts and garnished with lemon scented syrup and is simply divine.

INGREDIENTS

For the baklava

300g butter, melted

25-30 phyllo sheets

500g walnuts, chopped (or a mix of walnuts, pistachios, and almonds)

2 teaspoons cinnamon powder

2 teaspoons grounded clove

For the syrup

600g sugar

2 cups of water

Zest of 1 lemon or orange

1 cinnamon stick

PREPARATION

To prepare this baklava recipe, start by melting the butter in a saucepan over low heat, being careful not to burn it and grease the baking dish. Begin by layering the sheets of phyllo on the bottom of the baking dish to form the base of the baklava. Layer the sheets one at a time, making sure to sprinkle each one with melted butter. Use about 10-12 layers on the bottom side of the baklava. In a large bowl, mix the chopped nuts, the cinnamon and grounded clove. Sprinkle the nut mixture over the phyllo base and continue forming the top of the baklava. Top the nuts with the rest of the phyllo sheets (10 of them), sprinkling each one with melted butter and brush the top of the baklava with enough butter. Place the baklava in the fridge for 15 minutes to make it easier to cut into pieces. Remove the baklava from the fridge and using a sharp knife cut the pastry all the way down into pieces. Place the baklava in preheated oven at 150C and bake for about 1 1/2- 2 hours, until all the phyllo layers are crisp and golden. Let the baklava cool down completely and serve after the syrup has soaked throughout.

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