Thursday, 15 May 2008

Greek Feast

We've been having a run of good weather lately (well, we had when I started this article!) Everything in the garden seems to have doubled in size in a few days, I've been frantically scrubbing the bird-do's off the garden furniture, and phoning the local herb farm to see if they have any basil seedlings yet for the patio (since I neglected to start any from seed this year...) Isn't it wonderful to eat outside, smell the flowers, the herbs, listen to the birds, breathe some fresh air?

Here's a wonderful raw Greek menu for your next al fresco eating! Although the RawforLife monthly e-zine features recipes that don't require a dehydrator, RawforLife Blog is 'allowed'...but, if you don't have a dehydrator, you could mop up the Greek salad juices with Essene Bread instead (recipe at the RawforLife Blog here).
  • Greek salad (recipe - well, let's say 'instructions' - below)
  • RawforLife Greek Flax Crackers (recipe below)
  • Tzatziki (A 'sour-cream' dip made with cashews, lemon, cucumber and mint - for recipe see RawforLife Blog here)
GREEK SALAD

Put into a large bowl as many thick wedges of large, juicy, tomato that you can eat (and more). Ditto thick wedges of cucumber. To that, add: sliced bell pepper, sliced red onion, raw olives (from therawgreek.com here) and chopped oregano*.

Then drizzle in a little olive oil and lemon juice and give it a good stir. Don't worry too much about quantities - if you have a little too much oil and lemon, it will, mixed with the tomato and red onion, make delicious juices.

*use fresh or dried. In the summer, I usually use fresh as it grows in the garden, but, having been to many Greek islands where the tavernas generally use dried despite oregano growing wild there, dried can actually make your Greek salad taste more 'authentic'!

RAWFORLIFE GREEK FLAX CRACKERS

These are strongly-flavoured tomatoey crackers. Sometimes when I make them they come out crisp and crackly; other times a bit chewy. Either is good! I know lots of you know how to make flax crackers, but I've added a little extra in the instructions for those who have never made them before - RawforLife Greek crackers would be ideal for your first go!

(makes 3-4 trays)

  • 1 cup flax seeds (linseed), whole, soaked in 1 cup of water 2 hours
  • 1 cup flax seeds, ground
  • 1 red bell pepper, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups roughly-chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup chopped cucumber (don't peel)
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 small red onion, chopped
  • 10 raw olives, stoned and chopped
  • Oregano - 2 tbsp fresh, or 1/2 tbsp dried
  • 1 tsp sea salt
1. Place all ingredients in processor and process until quite smooth, but still a little textured and colourful.

2. Divide mixture between 3-4 paraflexx-lined dehydrator trays (3 if you want them a little chewy and 4 if you want them extra thin 'n' crispy).

3. Spread mixture out to four corners of each tray,using the back of a spoon, flat of a knife, or spatula. Keep spreading - don't worry that it's getting too thin... Smooth over large holes, but don't worry about tiny ones. Have faith - the 'gloopiness' of the flax and the dehydrating will ensure that your crackers hold together.

4. Mark out in squares, eg 4 x 4.

5. Dehydrate at 105F for 10 hours. Then flip, removing paraflexx sheets.

6. Dehydrate at 105F for another 8 hours, or longer (until crispy).

Greek salad, crackers and tzatziki could be served with confidence to raw and non-raw people alike and of course would make a colourful and tasty addition to an outdoors buffet, or indoors, as the case may be...(comfort for those in rainy climes - the more rain the cleaner the air).

7 comments:

Antony Heaven said...

Delicious food Debbie - and it's almost sunny enough again in London today to eat it alfresco :-)

I've got some wheat sprouting for essene bread. I absolutely love that now thought I don't make it often enough for my liking! I just have to get into a regular soaking habit I think.

Recently I didn't feel like making the bread but wanted to use the sprouted grains, so I tossed them into a salad. So good!

I hope you're having a good weekend

love, Antony

McColl&Clan said...

looks so yummy!

i have a quick question for you Debbie. what do you use to grind your nuts, seeds, and grains(if you use them)into a flour?

i don't have much money. I cannot afford a vitamix. and, the coffee mills don't seem to last!

suggestions?

Debbie Took said...

Hi mccoll@clan

I used to use a coffee mill, but did not find it ideal as firstly it was very small and secondly the blade could not be removed for cleaning. Nowadays, although I do have a Vitamix dry jug, I more often use a Cuisinart mini food processor to grind seeds. It's excellent, and I'd recommend it not only for seeds but also for whenever you need to do small amounts of something, eg portions for 1-2 people only, dressings etc, and don't want to have to clean out a larger processor. I've seen it priced at between £50 and £70. Definitely worth the price.

McColl&Clan said...

thanks so much debbie...oh,and it is me, LULU, from GI2MR community.

^__^

Debbie Took said...

I knew I knew 'McColl & Clan' from somewhere!

Chana said...

Hi, Debbie Took!
I love to visit your web pages. Thank you for sharing your success
here. I have a question about the
sprouted wheat bread. What kind of
wheat berries do you use? Here
in U.S.A. I've found berries called
soft, hard, winter, spring with a variety of definitions. Some are
more "tender" than others. Some seem to be more "tough." So I thought to ask which kind you use?
Thanks,
Chana

Debbie Took said...

Hi Chana

Many thanks for feedback!

All I can say is I use wheatberries that are described on the fresh-network website as 'organic seeds for sprouting'. They're quite hard, and there's a picture of them here:

http://debbietookrawforlife.blogspot.com/2008/04/wheat-part-ii-how-to-make-essene-bread.html