Award ~ Top 40 Greek Food Blogs on the web

Greek-Food-transparent_216pxGBlogoWe have been honoured by Feedspot.com as one of the Top 40 Greek Food Blogs on the web.http://blog.feedspot.com/greek_food_blogs/

We are really happy and proud to have received this position, and we would like to thank Feedspot for this nomination.

We try to pick interesting subjects, Greek food trends, season’s dishes and costumes, and all that you need to know about Greek Food Ingredients, and their connection to the Greek gastronomy.

Thank you all for reading our blog, following us in social media and loving what we love, Greek foods!

The blog is sponsored by www.greekbrands.com

Greek Brands is a Fine Foods export company, serving Greek fine foods worldwide since 1999.

The Greek melomakarono

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How many of you know what a melomakarono is?

The Greek melomakarono is an olive oil cookie dipped in sugar syrup and sprinkled with chopped nuts. It is a traditional Christmas delight that you can find in every Greek home during Christmas and New Year’s holiday period. Every pastry and bakery shop sells them, and along with kourabiethes -another Greek Christmas delight- are the top 2 delicacies of the season.

A few things about its name (melo= honey & makarono=spaghetti)

Although the first thought that probably comes to mind is the Italian word “macaroni”, the melomakarono name derives from ancient Greece! Specifically, the “macaroni” comes from the Greek word “makaronia”, a funerary dinner based on pasta. The aim of the dinner was to bless and farewell the dead.
The makaronia comes from the ancient Greek word “makario” which means blessed. It was a piece of bread in the shape of modern melomakarono, that was offered after the funeral. Later, when the “makario” was drizzled with honey syrup they named it  melomakarono.

Melomakarono Recipe

{http://akispetretzikis.com/en/categories/keik-mpiskota/ta-melomakarona-toy-akh} 🙂 

However, if you are an importer or distributor and melomakarona or kourabiethes interests you as a product, do not hesitate to contact us and we promise to bring you some of the Greek Christmas spirit!

info@greekbrands.com  |     http://www.greekbrands.com

DIY|Summer Mediterranean Salad

hot weather

Officially, summer is here!

Our clothes are fewer, our smiles are bigger, the mood is getting better, and the food portions we consume are getting smaller. We generally try to avoid fatty foods during the summer, our bodies don’t need so much energy to make it through the day. We choose refreshing light meals that won’t keep us down.

So, I have a question for you! How do you feel about legumes salads? Salads with lentils, beans, split peas, peas etc?https://i0.wp.com/www.raw-living-food-success.com/images/Beans.jpg

Legumes are an important part of the Mediterranean Diet. In Greece we are used to consuming legumes at least once or twice a week. We are consuming large peas known as “giants”, lentils as a soup, split peas as a mousse, chickpeas as a soup or in the oven, and many more.

The first time I tasted legumes as a salad, I think I will remember it for a long time. I had not even seen it as a trend around the internet. I was in a comfort-food type of restaurant, in the alternative heart of the city, Keramikos. Since I like exploring new tastes, I ordered it from the menu right away.

It was a lentil salad, with carrot sticks, lots of parsley, feta cut in cubes, vinegar-olive oil dressing and ground black pepper. The taste was so refreshing and interesting, I was so happy to taste “boring” legumes in a different recipe.

Ingredients photos saladSince I knew that legumes is such an important nutrition source, containing significant amount of protein, I was glad that I was able to cook it differently, and set up a new recipe directory with the name “Legumes salads”.

Soon after I discovered it, it was already everywhere. On Pinterest, on foreign and Greek sites as well, in every respectable restaurant of the town, in every salad list etc. It had become a different dish, made with the same old materials that nonetheless gave it a new perspective.

If you know the basics in the kitchen, and you have enough imagination in order to experiment, the road is open and the dogs are constrained. (a famous Greek saying, meaning you are free to act as you will)Salad Recipe

I started experimenting with all kinds of legumes, lentils, chickpeas, peas, splitpeas, green peas etc. Not all of my experiments were crowned with success. However, I found where my taste met my capability, and this was somewhere near the Mediterranean bean salad.

So, from now on when it’s the legumes day of the week, one in two weeks I will experiment with a salad.

Waiting for your thoughts and comments!

Fenia Karkantzou

Marketing Manager | Greek Brands

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Follow us on twitter: @GreekBrands

Ideas for a Greek style Thanksgiving

Yes. It’s almost Christmas!

thanksgiving recipe

But before Christmas, there is another beautiful opportunity for celebration. It’s Thanksgiving time!

During this month we have come across hundreds of articles and recipes on Thanksgiving and we came up with the idea to demonstrate some of these recipes combining the spirit of Thanksgiving with a Greek unique twist! Authentic Greek food products have unique healthy characteristics (climate, soil etc) as well as a rich delicious taste. Greek yogurt, Greek olive oil, Feta cheese and Greek olives are starring in our everyday cuisine but now we’ll see them starring in Thanksgiving classics too.

If you want to add a little bit of Greek spirit in your holiday dishes this year, this list will show you how!

Every Thanksgiving dinner needs its starter dishes; you can prepare a Greek salad  or watch how you can prepare one here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2vFC62iwsvM . An excellent idea is to prepare several starters so your guests are occupied until you finish with the serving of the table. Check some ideas with feta here. You can also bake a different homemade bread stuffed with Greek olives to serve along with a platter of cheeses.

When thinking about side dishes, there are many inspirations like this recipe for Greek oven roasted potatoes. If you have decided to prepare the classic mashed potatoes, check this wonderful recipe for fluffy mashed potatoes with Greek yogurt and chives,

Without the all-time classic dish of oven roasted turkey, we could not speak of Thanksgiving. You can follow the classic instructions for the baking process and prepare a separate stuffing recipe. You can watch a unique Greek stuffing recipe with Kalamata olives and feta cheese. Or if you’d like to prepare the traditional turkey with stuffing watch these 4 Greek inspired stuffing recipes here http://www.dianekochilas.com/greek-style-stuffings-and-gravy/ . Except of the classic gravy recipe you can also prepare some other “side” sauces that are beautifully combined with meat dishes like these http://www.topgreekyogurt.com/greekyogurtrecipes.html .

Last but not least comes the selection of the dessert that will close your dinner in a sweet way. We have some suggestions based on light and fresh ingredients rather than heavier choices. The choices we propose are a Greek yogurt Cheesecake with pomegranate syrup or a lemon mousse with Greek yogurt.

Share these lovely Greek inspired recipes with your loved ones and make this holiday season unique. We hope you have a great time!

Thank you,

Greek Brands.

Another view on Food Exhibitions or 3 odd ways to find a new client

Most of us often attend food shows in several countries presenting our products, catching up with clients, sourcing new products etc.

But what are those things happening in food shows, that we all know and no one talks about?

Travelling

A food show in another country is a perfect opportunity for a traveling experience. Sightseeing, dining, shopping etc., are a necessary part of every food show visit.

Having good time

Except the exhausting schedule of a food show, there is always time to have some fun. Lots of colors, nice people, motion. Talking with people in the booth or in the aisles, is always a nice experience regardless all client-supplier discussions.

Spying

And yes, a food show is a perfect place to see what the competition is doing or thinking.Everyone has a memory of himself visiting his competitor’s booth for a chat and a quick look around…Apart of the above, due to the more ‘open’ atmosphere of the show, it’s easier to talk to somebody and strike the deal (sometimes under an odd way).

Below are 3 examples from my personal experience.

1. In the queue for the W.C.

Pressure, meetings, talking etc. What about W.C.? I went there urgently, but OMG what a queue! In front of me there was a guy talking over the phone. And the subject: Olives. Here we go! Waiting in the queue for 15 minutes, we had a full discussion and took the first steps for a long-term cooperation.

2. Luggage in the train

I was in the crowded train leaving from the show to Paris center. There was a young lady with a huge luggage and of course I helped her taking it into the train. During the train’s ride, we talked a lot and came out she was the owner of a specialty foods chain. What a perfect introductory meeting.

3. Night drinks

Oh what a night. Right after the business dinner, we went out with a fellow for a drink. Next to us there were some people partying. We started chatting, drinking and dancing. At the end of the night, when we exchanged business cards, we realized we were what each other was looking for in the show.

Eventually, it’s nice to participate in food shows.

What is your opinion for the food shows? Do you have similar stories to talk about? Please share with us your comments and experiences.

Panos Mavrakis, CEO of Greek Brands.

Greek strained yogurt VS Regular yogurt

Yogurt has become a hit product worldwide. The global yogurt market is projected to surpass $67 billion by the year 2015, driven by growing consumer desire for convenient and health promoting products, according to new report by Global Industry Analysts, Inc. This thriving consumer desire, find its source in yogurt’s nutritional and taste characteristics. What makes yogurt sales thrive is also the fact that it can be applied in everyone’s diet. Adults, elderly, children, people on diet, pregnant women and athletes can consume it in regular basis due to its low fat content, protein content, and feeling of fullness that it offers. It is also consumed due to its calcium content, and belief that helps with bone strength and health.

11525978_sWhat makes Greek Yogurt so special, in comparison with regular yogurts?

Protein.
Greek yogurt can have twice as much protein as regular yogurt. One cup of plain, low-fat conventional yogurt usually contains 5 to 10 grams of protein, where Greek yogurt averages about 13 to 20 grams of protein. The extra protein makes people trying to manage their weight, reduce the feeling of hunger.

Sodium.
According to the USDA, Greek yogurt has less sodium by up to 50 percent. It remains full in its taste without the high sodium content.

Low in carbohydrates.
Regular yogurts have 15 to 17 grams of carbohydrates per cup, where Greek yogurt averages around 9 grams.

Easy to digest.
Because Greek yogurt contains fewer carbohydrates than regular yogurt, it has less lactose. This is especially helpful for people who have lactose intolerance.

Texture and Taste.
Greek yogurt has a smooth, rich and thick texture. Part of what makes Greek yogurt different than regular yogurt is that it is strained. The straining leaves yogurt with a creamier, smoother texture and a more full taste.

Versatility. Due to its thick texture, Greek yogurt can substitute fats like cream cheese, mayonnaise, sour cream in savory dishes or baked goods.

 

www.topgreekyogurt.com

http://www.nutraceuticalsworld.com/contents/view_breaking-news/2010-02-08/yogurt-consumption-to-reach-67-billion-by-2015/#sthash.WSSeswZV.dpuf

http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/benefits-greek-yogurt-vs-regular-yogurt-6187.html

http://www.dsm.com/content/dam/dsm/foodandbeverages/en_US/documents/DSM%20Yogurt%20Insights%20Healthwellbeing.pdf

Back to school Greek snack ideas

back to school snacks

The new school year is just beginning. Students are preparing mentally and physically for the new season’s demands, and probably the parents are in the same position. Depending on the grade, weekly schedules can be very demanding. Especially when it involves physical activity like sports, swimming etc. Nutrition of students plays a crucial role in their performance, energy supplies and good mental health. Generally, give an extra notice on quality of ingredients, flavor, versatility, and fat percent. Based on the high nutritional quality of certain Greek products and in order to be prepared in terms of snacks and lunches, we are giving you some alternative snack ideas with a Greek touch, that your family will love, and you will enjoy the most preparing them.

Preparing snacks with Greek ingredients, will bring variety on your table and health characteristics that you needed!

avacado1. Aromatic sandwich with avocado and feta cheese

Ingredients:
Bread of your choice
2 thin slices of barrel aged feta cheese
Some basil leaves
1/2 mature avocado
2-3 tomato slices
Some fresh onion in really thin slices

Open your bread in half, spread the avocado and add all the ingredients. Drizzle with a little bit of extra virgin olive oil. Close your sandwich, and prepare for the most exciting bite!

Stuffed baguettes  2. Stuffed baguette

You’ll need some baguettes, a long spoon, and all of our favorite sandwich ingredients!
Cut the baguettes in half, and remove all the crumb. Stuff the baguettes with the ingredients you like, but make sure they are a little moist (cream cheese, or sauce) so they cover up the inside of the baguette evenly. Put them in the fridge for a half day, and remove it. Cut in 2 cm slices, and serve.

Stuffing: 2 slices Feta cheese, ½ tomato, 2 slices ham, 2-3 sliced Kalamata olives  , oregano.
Tip : You can adjust the ingredients according to your taste, but do not overdo it with the quantity.

 3. Quick Cheese Pie8487183_s

Ingredients:
1 cup raising flour
1 cup soft butter
2 cups Greek yogurt
4 eggs
1/2 kg. Feta cheese, crumbled, not mashed
bread crumbs
sesame seeds

Mix all ingredients together except breadcrumbs. Grease an ovenproof baking pan and spread the breadcrumbs. Put the mixture into the pan and spread some sesame seeds on top. Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes at 180oC. Serve warm or cold.

burgers-b4. Homemade Greek Burger

Ingredients:
Burger breads
Slices of feta cheese
Slices of tomato
1 homemade beef burger (made of minced meat, onion and olive oil)
Yogurt dip (yogurt, salt, dill, mustard)
Some lettuce
Onion slices

Slightly bake your breads after you have cut it in halves, and prepare a buffet of the ingredients, so everyone in the family can prepare his/her own version of Greek Burger.
Variety matters!

banana-smoothi 5. Greek Yogurt Smoothie

Ingredients:
1 banana
1 cup Greek yogurt
Some ice cubes
A pinch of cinnamon
1 jar
1 thick straw

Mix the banana, the yogurt and ice with the cinnamon together, until creamy. Pour them into the jar, and place a thick straw. Done. Running late? Grab the jar, and take it with you!

Share with us your thoughts and recommendations.
Which are your typical school snacks?

Recipe in a Bottle

Connecting to Friends, Old and New, Through Recipes, Gardens, and Dinner Parties

Darkroomstory

Photography by Manos,

Greek Raisins

κορινθιακή Σταφίδα

Greece by a Greek

discover Greece off the beaten path