Sunday, August 5, 2012

Greetings from Crete!

No, I haven't decided to travel to the land of the Minoans (though that would be pretty cool). But, my family has decided to have a new tradition. Once a month, one of us picks a country and we have a themed dinner in the theme of that country. Sorry, that was a really bad explanation. Let me try again:
for instance, this month, I picked Crete, so we had a Cretan dinner.
I picked Crete for three reasons:
One: As you all know, I'm working on a Greek tragedy, titled The Minotaur, which is set in Crete.
Two: We just finished studying ancient Greece (look out, Rome!), so I thought it would be appropriate.
Three: I. Love. Mediterranean. Food.

I think my sister is picking Egypt next, which oughta' be fun.

So, I had a pretty good weekend. On Friday, my sister, mother and I went to a cute little consignment store to shop. They had the perfect combination: great prices (picture $10 to $14 for a nice dress!), great clothes (good condition, colorful, stylish). My oldest sister had an art show (!) that we were going to, so Sister 2 and I picked out some cute dresses. I got a black dress and a blue one, my sister got a mustard coloured dress (and one other). She ended up wearing the blue dress 'cause the mustard one didn't work out and I wore the black dress (!!!). And.... I GOT THOSE AWESOME SANDALS! This year (and last year, too) I had just flipflops, which are not elegant. at. all. But, my sister and I both got a pair of sandals (hers are brown) from the store I mentioned. $3 each!
And, being that they were Greek-ish looking sandals, I wore them for our Cretan dinner, too. :)
The art show was a lot of fun. My sisters are awesome; the oldest is a painter  (and a good one); the other one still lives at home (but she's going to be 16!!! AHHH!!!!)

So, onto Saturday. Well, my sister and I walked to the grocery store (it's not even a block away), picked up some last-minute ingredients, and started cooking (at, like, 1:00 PM). We spent the rest of the day cooking. :) 
This was the result:

In detail, this was our menu:
We had a salad, Choriatiki, which we adapted from here;


1 tomato
1 cucumber
Crumbled feta cheese, enough to cover the surface
½ onion
2-3 tbs olive oil


Wash the vegetables well and cut them into small pieces. Mix on a plate and add the feta, and oil. Season with salt and the salad is ready. A little oregano can also be scattered over the feta, for a stronger flavor.

Then we had Dakos, which we found here; though we didn't grate the tomatoes, we just chopped them finely.

Then, we had Tzatziki, with flatbread (Garden of Eatin' multigrain tortilla chips) to dip in it. That, too, was delicious. We found the recipe from here; by the by, should you choose to use this recipe, 1 kg of strained yogurt means 4.5 cups of greek yogurt. 
This dip made a lot, but it was pretty good!

 The main course was honeyed shrimps, found here.

15 large, raw shrimps cut lengthwise
2 tbsp honey 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves
1 teaspoon thyme or savory
20 grams butter
1 tbsp dill
½ lemon thinly sliced


Using a non-stick skillet, heat the olive oil and the butter. Add the shrimps and fry them for 3 to 4 minutes until they turn brown. We fried them for a bit longer than this. Add the garlic, dill, thyme, lemon and honey.  It sort of spits at this part. Cook together for 3 minutes. We served it with rice, and we just avoided the three cloves of garlic (we ate some of the lemons, but not all of them).

For dessert, we had Kalitsounia Kritis (kah-leet-SOON-yah   kree-teez), found here. I just love all these names! And the food!

The Kalitsounia was pretty easy, though with the recipe we had, we doubled the dough and still had plenty of the filling left!
And instead of using 1 lb. of cottage cheese, we used 1 lb. of ricotta, which I think was better since we were having this for dessert.

This was my first time frying anything without parental supervision, and my sister's first time, too (she did the shrimp) .

We had dinner at 7, which meant that we successfully spent 6 hours in the kitchen. :) But it was worth it.

And, I forgot to mention: Cretans eat "family style". In other words, they don't use serving spoons; they just take their fork and eat right out of the serving dish. I convinced my mother to let us do this; it was a lot of fun. :)


  1. Alas! It hath been officially dubbed a tragedy! *sob* It had better be very bloody tragic! I want to be a sobbing mess for days after reading it. *severe glare*

  2. I HOPE ¥ou will be!! I plan on killing most of the characters.
    Oh, and I added something at the end of my post (which I forgot to mention earlier).

  3. Those sandles are so cute! I love them! The food looks and sounds great! You guys seem like very good cooks! That store has great prices!

    1. Thank you! The food was all pretty easy - it was only time consuming because we did so much.


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