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Berry Custard Treat

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It's officially spring. One of the loveliest seasons to be in London. Everywhere you look trees are bursting with gorgeous pink or white blooms, Magnolias and Camelias are in full bloom and everything suddenly has turned green.
With spring, come fresh spring fruits as well! I came across these amazingly smelling berries, strasberries and pineberries and although they were a little pricey, I HAD to get them. They literally smelled like strawberries used to smell when I was young and honestly I wanted my kids to try them, as not even organic strawberries come close to these.


Strasberries are a variety of the garden strawberry, smaller in size and with a deep red colour. They were developed by a German breeder in 1925, and they were nearly extinct until a Dutch farmer reintroduced them as a commercial variety. Pineberries are also a variety of strawberry with an appearance opposite to the regular strawberry: white skin and red seeds. Their name comes form their flavours resemblance …

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Easter Egg Rocky Road

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Rocky Road is by far one of my favourite deserts to nibble on. I love how you can actually combine nuts, chocolate, cookies, marshmallows and anything else your heart desires into a really fast to make, super-easy dessert, that everyone loves. Each chunky looking colourful little square is crunchy and chewy at the same time, smoothly chocolatey with a sour twist from the raspberries.
Historically, Rocky Road is a 100% American creation and it's name reflects it's appearance: it literally looks like a rocky road! It started off as ice-cream and if you look into who was the first to make it and in which state, there is a whole debate. I will not go into detail, I will just say 'THANK YOU!' to the real inventor, he made our lives a little more decadent!

This Easter version is fully loaded with mini pretzels, toasted coconut flakes, marshmallows, pistachios and crushed Easter eggs, sprinkled with freeze-dried raspberries and bound together with white chocolate. Bliss!


I could…

Crab Velouté ~ Σούπα Καβουριού

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Clean Monday, the day that signifies the start of the Great Lent, is today! All Greeks will gather with friends and family to enjoy seafood today and on this occasion, some years back, I had created this crab soup.
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Η Καθαρή Δευτέρα έφτασε! Λίγες μέρες πριν, σταμάτησα με μεγάλο ιχθυοπωλείο να προμηθευτώ φρέσκο ψάρι. Αγόρασα μπαρμπουνάκια που λατρεύουν τα παιδιά μου, και όπως πήγα να φύγω, πήρε το μάτι μου αυτά τα καβουράκια.


The story behind it is, that when I first laid eyes on these little lively fellows with the blue claws, I hesitated to buy a lot, since I thought they would be rather expensive, as all crab tends to be. However, at a price of €2.60 per kilo-I was in Greece at the time-my brain almost exploded with the recipes I started coming up with. I intended to use them for a lot of yummy creations! They were grown in lagoons in Thessaloniki the fishmonger said.
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Christmassy Baklava

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Here in London, the Christmas spirit is evident really early on! It’s mid November and all the Christmas lights have gone on, the store displays are marvelous in their Christmas decorations, and the mood for Christmas has started to set in since October.


This Christmassy baklava just popped up on my Facebook memories, and remembering it just made me drool!
I contemplated remaking it-the photos are circa 2015-and reposting in English, but honestly, I also remembered that I had eaten such a huge quantity the last time I made it, that I decided that 2015 iPhone photos were just fine!


So here goes, this is my version of baklava after I saw a recipe in a British magazine, that suggested a chestnut only baklava. I decided to add some ingredients along the way-mostly what I had in hand at the moment-and voila: a chestnut, apple, cranberry, cinnamon, cardamom and orange, buttery, syrupy and crunchy baklava.


The first bite alone will make you ‘feel’ Christmassy inside, thus the inevitable nam…

Fanouropita~Φανουρόπιτα

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*scroll down for English
Άυριο εδώ νησί μου την Κάσο, στο εκκλησάκι του Αγίου Φανουρίου και μετά τον εσπερινό, μοιράζονται οι φανουρόπιτες και τα γλυκά που φέρνουν οι πιστοί. Είναι τόσο πολλά, που καταλήγουμε πάντα να κουβαλάμε σακουλίτσες γεμάτες υπέροχες πίτες και νοστιμιές, και να τρώμε φανουρόπιτες για δυο τρεις μέρες μετά...
Παραδοσιακά η φανουρόπιτα φτιάχνεται με 7, 9 ή 11 υλικά, δεν περιέχει αυγό και βούτυρο-είναι νηστίσιμη-και φτιάχνεται για την συγχώρεση της μητέρας του Αγίου, που ήταν υποτίθεται πολύ άσπλαχνη γυναίκα. Το όνομα του Αγίου όμως, την έκανε και πίτα που 'φανερώνει'-υγεία, δουλειά, έναν καλό γαμπρό κτλ κτλ!
Προσωπικά αγαπώ πολύ αυτό το πανεύκολο κέικ, και το φτιάχνω συχνά στα παιδιά μου. Η συνταγή είναι δική μου, προσαρμοσμένη από 2-3 που είχα βρει παλαιότερα όταν την έφτιαξα για πρώτη φορά-στην ουσία είναι η πιο απλή, με υπέροχη όμως γεύση και υφή.
Ελπίζω να την φτιάξετε, και εάν βρείτε και αυτό που ψάχνετε...τόσο το καλύτερο!



ΥΛΙΚΑ:
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Chicken and Mushrooms A La Crème

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Desperate times call for desperate measures they say...
In my case, I thought long and hard about how I should blog now that I have moved to London. This is my first post in English and I hope I don't disappoint my Greek readers terribly, but I feel there are not enough hours in a day, so in order to keep my sanity, I chose the easy path. No 'two different blogs for each country' thoughts for me anymore! Just the same, www.gourmelita.com, in English for the time being.  

Between two new schools for my children, a new job, a new flat, actually: a whole new life, I somewhat got... lost in translation.  Everything is new, exciting and different!  I am now collaborating with a chain of restaurants here in London, and I will elaborate on that on an upcoming post on one of the restaurant's signature dishes, which makes me drool whenever the smell 'hits' me at work.

In the past few months, I have had very little time to focus on my cooking-of course I still cook dail…