The award winning author of 18 cookbooks and creator-host of PBS’ “My Greek Table,” Diane Kochilas joins Dean Richards for some Greek cooking.  

Gyro Bolognese

Makes 4 servings

  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ cup extra virgin Greek olive oil
  • 2 cups Grecian Delight Kronos ready carve gyro meat, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 cups chopped canned tomatoes
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 5 allspice berries
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 piece of orange zest
  • Salt, pepper to taste
  • 1 pound Spaghetti or linguine

Instructions

Heat the olive oil and sweat the onion until wilted and translucent. Add the garlic and stir. Add the gyro meat and toss to coat in the oil.

Stir in the tomato paste, chopped tomatoes, and wine. Add the spices, herbs, and zest. Simmer for 30 minutes, or until sauce thickens. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Bring pasta to a boil in salted water according to package directions. Drain, reserving a cup of the cooking liquid. Add a little of the cooking liquid of necessary to the Bolognese before serving, heating it through.

Toss the pasta with the gyro Bolognese and serve with grated cheese if desired.

Greek Paella with Grecian Delight Kronos Gyros

Ingredients: 

  • 1 head cauliflower, cleaned and separated into sections)
  • 1 lb. carrots, scrubbed, trimmed, and cut into 2-inch pieces)
  • 2 yellow and 2 green zucchinis, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces) 
  • 1 can petit diced tomato, drained or 4 fresh Roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1 large Vidalia onion, diced
  • Tzatziki sauce (pre-prepared or homemade (see recipe below) 
  • Greek Rice Pilaf (see recipe below)
  • 1 pkg, Grecian Delight Kronos Pre-Sliced Gyros
  • Salt and pepper
  • ½ cup slivered almonds, roasted lightly in olive oil 
  • ½ cup chopped parsley for garnish  
  • ½ cup crumbled feta cheese (do not buy it pre-crumbled.  Crumble your own.  I recommend Dodoni brand)
  • 1 package, Pita Bread (toasted)
  • (Check ingredients for other parts of this dish)

Instructions: 

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.  

Place the cauliflower, carrots and zuchinni vegetables in a bowl and cover with olive oil.   Sprinkle with salt and pepper.   Spread vegetables on a baking sheet.   Roast for 35 minutes.   Set aside.  

Prepare the saffron rice (recipe below) or rice of your choice.   (set aside)

Prepare Grecian Delight Kronos Pre-sliced Gyros  (recipe below)

Layer rice pilaf into the “paella” (shallow pan) or serving dish leaving the center open for the gyros. 

Place roasted vegetables around the rice.    

Place the warm gyros in the center of the pan or dish

Garnish with the ingredients you would normally find a gyros sandwich (the diced tomatoes, diced onion and sprinkle with Tzatziki sauce (save some on the side.)

Greek Rice Pilaf  

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped.  (I like vidalia)
  • 1 cup basmati rice soaked and drained
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 tsp lemon zest
  • 2 cups chicken broth (I recommend low-sodium)
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp fresh dill or to taste
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2/4 tsp salt or to taste
  • 1 pinch turmeric optional, for coloring
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter optional, for serving
  • Extra lemon juice optional, for topping

Instructions

Add the olive oil to a large saucepan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the onions and garlic and saute until soft and fragrant (4-5 minutes.)

Add the soaked and drained basmati rice and lemon zest, sautee until slightly toasted (about 1 minute), stirring from time to time to keep the rice from sticking to the pan.

Pour in the broth, water, lemon juice, dill, parsley, cumin, oregano, black pepper, salt, and turmeric (if using). Bring the rice to a boil, then immediately reduce heat to low and cover. Cook for 10-15 minutes or until the water and broth mixture has evaporated and the rice is tender but not sticky*. Taste and adjust seasonings if desired. Stir.

Remove from heat, cover, and allow the rice to sit covered for 10 minutes. Top with extra lemon juice, crumbled feta cheese or butter if desired. Serve immediately!

Grecian Delight Kronos Ready Carved Gyros Slices.

Stove top:
Preheat pan to medium heat and place slices in pan. Cook slices on each side for one to two minutes or until the slices reach 165 F.

Oven:
Preheat oven 375F and place slices on a pre-oiled, oven safe tray in a single layer. Cook for 8-10 minutes or until the slices reach 165F.

Microwave:
Place unopened bag on a microwave-safe plate.
Microwave for 3 minutes, 30 seconds. Bag will inflate and popping sounds may be heard.   Let stand for at least 1-2 minutes. CAUTION BAG WILL BE HOT.  Open package away from your body; empty onto serving dish and serve immediately. 

Diane Kochilas’ Tzatziki – Greek Yogurt Dip

Ingredients

  • 1 large seedless cucumber, peeled and grated on the coarse side of a hand grater or in a food processor. 
  • Salt
  • 2 cups Greek yogurt
  • 4 – 6 garlic cloves to taste, minced
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil.
  • 3 small pickled cucumbers (pickles), minced
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh dill

Instructions:

Place the grated cucumber in a fine-mesh colander lined with cheesecloth, sprinkle lightly with salt and toss. Cover and let stand for an hour to drain.

Gather up the ends of the cheesecloth and twist as far down as possible, squeezing out as much water as possible from the cucumber. Do this several times until the grated cucumber has exuded most of its liquid.

Empty the yogurt into a mixing bowl. Toss with the cucumber, garlic, olive oil, pickles, vinegar and dill.  Taste for salt and adjust seasoning if necessary.  Chill for 15 minutes and serve.

(The tzatziki will keep for a day or two, covered and chilled, before the garlic starts to impart an unpleasant bitterness to the dip.)

See past recipes from Dean on his cooking page.

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