If you've ever been to Greece, you've no doubt been impressed by the local food. However, you might not have tried making it at home for fear of complications.
Yet, as with all great forms of cooking, Greek cuisine is based around simple principles; often utilising simple ingredients in clever combinations. With the likes of Moussaka, you can enjoy a sample of Greek cooking in the home. Likewise, there are other elements of Greek cuisine that are easier to achieve than you might have previously thought.
A Greek dish, Moussaka usually involves a combination of minced lamb and various herbs. Red wine can also be used for flavour in the cooking process, as it goes well with meat, especially lamb. Whilst the lamb itself is simple to prepare, the real secret of Moussaka comes from its additional herbs to add flavour.
The secret to any Moussaka recipe is to use oregano, marjoram and garlic. Together, these three innocent herbs can make a stronger, surprising Mediterranean taste.
Besides Moussaka, the Greeks make exceptional and extensive use of lamb as an ingredient. It may seem simple, but even something such as a lamb burger is full of Greek spirit. With a few choice herbs and feta mints, you can transform a simple burger into something much more Greek.
Likewise, you can borrow inspiration from other neighbouring countries for a truly Mediterranean feast. The likes of both Greece and Turkey make extensive use of lamb in the form of kebabs. However you do it, grilled lamb is an integral part of Greek cooking, as well as a common aspect of various forms of Mediterranean eating as a whole.
As a coastal country, it’s no surprise that certain regions in Greece have incorporated sea food as part of the national cuisine. Sharing the same appreciation for spices and herbs as the rest of Greek cuisine and Mediterranean food, seafood is a great place to start when attempting to create these traditional culinary delights.
Whereas the Greeks may cook the likes of grilled octopus, those of us in the UK may find it hard to come by fresh ingredients such as these. This doesn’t mean you can’t create these dishes but will merely need to substitute these ingredients with fresh fish and seafood you do have at your disposal.
To this end, you can consider utilising any traditional fish. As long as it’s not particularly strong in flavour, you can generally grill it in a Greek method. After this, applying simple herbs, in a fashion similar to Moussaka, can add the Mediterranean flavour. A suitable fish for this would be Tuna, where a tuna steak can add flavour without overpowering the dish as a whole.
To conclude, there is no great secret to Greek cuisine. With the right ingredients, such as lamb, it’s easy to achieve the atmosphere, taste and feeling of Greek food. The Greek cooking style is very light over all and by using the right herbs, available from Schwartz, you can add Greek flavour to virtually any meal.