When in Greece, I was remiss in not chronicling all my food adventures for reasons I won't bore you with. But I enjoyed a number of wonderful meals made for me largely by my Girls School students of yesteryear (1968-78), who welcomed me with open arms. Some of their dishes are pictured here (clockwise): baked feta-stuffed mushrooms, spicy Spetsofai (sausage with peppers), "politiki" salata (that is, in the Constantinople tradition), Pontion-style snails, homemade pitta, stewed yellow beans, gigantes ("giant beans"), horiatiki ("village") salad, and moussaka -- all were fabulous!
Now back in Miami, I am cooking up Greek food more than before. So I ventured to make "skordohaviaro" or tarama w/garlic and mint, which originates from my father's hometown of Naousa. The garlic cuts the fishiness of tarama, which many non-Greeks don't care for -- and I was always sad that when I made tarama, people mostly left it alone. Last night, my guests did everything but lick the bowl. Thrilling!
I also made "Festive Beets w/Tzatziki," based on tzatziki with beets that I ate this summer in
Thessaloniki. As beets in Greece are often served with a dollop of skordalia (garlic "dip") on the plate, I reversed the ratio to beets
w/tzatziki. Just mix cut cooked beets with tzatziki to generously coat till it all turns pink. When in the serving bowl, sprinkle the walnuts on top.