Side dishes and Starters

Mashed potatoes

Mashed potatoes is one of my favourite side dishes. Since my childhood I have a problem with rice, I do not like it.. I will eat it and even cook it if I have to, but I usually try and avoid it… I have tried A LOT of mashed potato recipes and I have concluded to this simple, quick and very tasty one that can accompany most of your meat dishes.

You will need:

– 6-7 medium potatoes pealed

– 3 tbsp of butter (if it is possible avoid margarine)

– 1 tbsp cumin powder

– a small glass of cream

– a garlic clove, crushed

– salt and pepper to taste

Cut potatoes in small 2 cm pieces. Bring the to boil for about 15 min. Make sure they are not completely mushy. Strain them and add the butter, start crushing them with a fork, when butter has dissolved add cream and keep crushing with the fork. When it has formed a smooth paste like texture add cumin powder, salt and pepper. And voilà your purée is ready to devour

TIP:  You can increase or decrease all the ingredients to your taste. The cream is used to make the purée more liquid; you can alternatively use milk or a combination of both.


Fresh lemonade with spearmint

You will need:

–          1 1/2  cup of white sugar

–          2 cups of water to dissolve the sugar

–          3 cups brewed spearmint (preferably dry mint, not fresh)

–          2 cups lemon juice (you will use about 10 lemons)

–          4-5 cups of water

In a small pot mix the sugar and the 2 cups of water until the sugar is dissolved. Set aside and let it chill for a while. In the meantime in another pot, boil the spearmint tea and also set aside to chill. Squeeze the lemons and then mix all the ingredients in a jug and place it in the fridge for at least an hour.It is an ideal refreshment for those hot summer afternoons in the garden!

TIP: When you serve it you can decorate it with fresh spearmint leaves.

 

YOU CAN ALSO USE MINT INSTEAD OF SPEARMINT.


Tzatziki the best dip

So, this is one of my favorite side dishes or starters or dips, no matter how you use it it’s DELICIOUS!

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You will need:

500 gr of greek yogurt

2 cucumbers

3-6 cloves of garlic (depending how much you like garlic! I usually use 4-5 cloves)

5 tablespoons of olive oil

1 tablespoon of vinegar

salt

Put the yogurt in a large bowl. Cut the cucumbers lengthwise,  take a spoon and remove the seeds (the cucumbers now should look like little boats).

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You grate the cucumbers with the peel and leave them to rest for 5 minutes. In the meantime  pestle the garlic with the salt and add it to the yogurt. ΄Drain´ the liquids from the grated cucumber and add it to the yogurt and garlic with a tablespoon of vinegar. Make a well in the middle and poor the olive oil. Don’t mix, leave it to rest in the fridge for 2 hours and just before serving stir it.

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Enjoy!!

Tip: You can also add dill (chopped).

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This goes well with meat (specially chicken), tomato salad and french fries! It is perfect for hot summer days as the yogurt is very refreshing.