There’s something about this time of year that has you yearning for good home cooked food and friends, lucky for you this weekend there’s a big bunch of lovely people who have sorted that out for you. This Saturday and Sunday is the Panyiri Greek festival held down at Musgrave Park in West End. It’s a wonderful kaleidoscope of characters with a lot of great food and wonderful dancing thrown into the mix. You can learn to belly dance or take part in an olive eating competition. This year they’re celebrating the festivals 35th anniversary so it’s sure to be a fantastic.
Make sure you pick up a plate of the festivals famous honey puffs, they’re heavenly.
If you’re more of a homebody like me why not do the next best thing and grab a Greek cookbook and have a mini Panyiri all of your own?
Tessa Kiros is one of my utter favourites. Her recipes mix beautiful photographs and artwork (which always helps me get in the mood to cook) and wonderful stories with simple and easy to follow recipes, which time and time again turn out wonderful results. Her latest book ‘Food From Many Greek Kitchens’ has one of my all time favourite recipes within it for an old style Custard and semolina pie. Indulgently sweet and sticky this dessert is one I’ll be coming back to for years to come, wonderful on a cold night with a hot cup of tea and a book.
Another little treasure is ‘The Real Greek Home’ written by Theodore Kyriakou and Charles Campion. This book gets you right back to the grass roots of Greek cooking, with recipes such as Rabbit ‘mountain style’ which shows an old Greek woman skinning a rabbit and Tsoureki, the traditional Greek spiced Easter bread.
The layout of this book is great, with sections on traditional Greek good for the tiny islands to the bigger bustling city as well as your essential home basics and a rather naughtily indulgent dessert section.