This delicious Greek dip is wonderfully flavored and has multiple uses. Serve with red, yellow or orange pepper strips, sliced cucumbers, carrot, celery sticks, and grape tomatoes to create a veggie platter with the dip as its centerpiece. It is also great with slices of toasted French baguette, toasted pita pockets or as a veggie sandwich topping. Greeks will eat it with most anything including roasted or grilled chicken, lamb, and pork.
It is usually the topping for the famous Greek sandwiches called yiros. It is not uncommon to see Greeks munching away on a yiro while strolling down the streets of their beautiful country. In the US, these sandwiches are referrred to as Giros. In Greece, they are known as YIROS. Once you have a giro, you’ll NEVER forget the experience.
- 1 cucumber cleaned, seeded and grated. It must be squeezed really dry to remove all the liquid. This can only be done well be using many paper towels. I used English Cucumber as they are almost seed free and speeds up the process.
- 1 quart plain Greek yogurt ( I use fat free)
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 level tablespoon dried oregano ( rubbed together in the palms of your hands to allow the flavor to explode). Remember dried herbs are exactly that DRIED LEAVES. Fresh chopped mint is an option here as well.
- 2 cloves garlic finely minced
- Salt to taste
Place all ingredients in a bowl except the salt. Mix well and add the salt slowly and begin tasting. It does not need much so be careful not to overdo. Remember once salt is in the recipe- there is no taking it out.
This bake and take crowd pleaser comes directly from my sister Kim’s kitchen. It seems like this time of year I am always looking to bring a sandwich on the boat, to the beach, or to a friend’s house. I really like making my sandwiches on a long loaf of bread and then slicing to enjoy with lots of friends. Not to worry if you are going to a location that you won’t have access to an oven. You can either bake the sandwich at home and then wrap it in foil or even skip the baking part and enjoy it as a cold sandwich. Let me know what you think. Enjoy!!
- 1/4 lb each hot capricola, mortadella, black pepper ham and salami
- Pesto (prepared or homemade, see my pesto pasta salad recipe for homemade pesto recipe)
- fresh basil (wash and dry basil leaves)
- Roasted Red Pepper (I used the one in a jar, blot the pepper on paper towel so they are not so wet. If you are using whole peppers break them into strips to place into sandwich)
- 1 small thinly sliced Vidalia onion
- 1 eggplant (remove skin, cut into 1/2 inch slices)
- Fresh mozzarella ball (thinly sliced)
- Loaf of bread (I usually use some sort of unsliced italian loaf)
- Balsamic glaze (this comes prepared and can be purchased at most grocery stores)
Preheat the broiler to high. Brush eggplant slices with olive oil and sprinkle with crazy salt and pepper. Place on a foil-lined baking sheet coated with cooking spray; broil 5 inches from the heat for 5 minutes on each side or until browned. Repeat procedure with remaining eggplant. Set eggplant aside.
Cut the bread lengthwise. Spread the pesto on the bottom half of the loaf. Layer your eggplant, onion slices, roasted red peppers, fresh basil and mozzarella cheese. Take the top half of the bread and drizzle with the balsamic glaze. Add the meats and carefully place the top half of the sandwich on the bottom half. Place the sandwich on a baking sheet and cook in a 400 degree oven for about 15-20 minutes or until cooked. Sandwich can be sliced and enjoyed.