The Greek Orthodox Church of Greater Salt Lake will host its annual festival this weekend. Besides music, dancing and crafts, there are more than 27 culinary specialties, such as gyros, souvlakia, spanakopites, dolmathes and baklava.
To get into the spirit of the occasion, here are recipes for Greek salad and dolmathes:
Start to finish: 20 minutes
Servings: 4 starters
Juice of half a lemon
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons dried oregano
Coarse salt and ground black pepper, to taste
2 large cucumbers, peeled, seeded and chopped into 1/2-inch cubes
2 large tomatoes, sliced and chopped into 1/2-inch chunks
Half medium red onion, peeled, trimmed, thinly sliced lengthwise
1/3 cup pitted Kalamata olives
1 tablespoon coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
5-ounce chunk feta cheese, finely chopped
Pinch of fleur de sel or other coarse sea salt
To prepare the dressing, in a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, vinegar, olive oil and oregano. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
To assemble the salad, in a large bowl, gently combine the cucumbers, tomatoes, onion, olives and parsley. Add the dressing, and stir gently until well coated.Sprinkle the feta cheese over the salad, then stir carefully just to incorporate. Check the seasoning and finish with a pinch of fleur de sel and black pepper.
2 large onions, chopped
2 cups rice (short grain rice recommended)
1 cup green onions, thinly sliced
3/4 cup fresh parsley, minced
3/4 cup fresh dill, chopped
1/2 cup lemon juice
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 jar preserved grape leaves
Salt and pepper to taste (salt may be omitted or reduced because the grape leaves are salty)
1 15-ounce can vegetable broth.
1 can water
1/4 to 1/2 cup lemon juice
Saute onions until tender, about 5 minutes. Add rice and saute for about 2 minutes, stirring continuously. Remove from heat, add green onions, parsley, dill, lemon juice, olive oil and salt and pepper to taste.
Rinse, drain and separate grape leaves. Prepare the dolmathes by placing a spoonful of the mixture in the center of each grape leaf. Fold over, fold in sides and roll up. Cover the bottom of a large saucepan with leaves. Pack the dolmathes closely together to prevent unraveling during cooking.For broth: Combine vegetable broth, lemon and water. Pour this mixture over the rolled leaves. Add additional water to just cover the dolmathes. Place an inverted plate directly over the top to weigh down the packed rolls. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 1 hour or until done. Let cool. Garnish with lemon and lemon juice.
The Greek Orthodox Church
of Greater Salt Lake City