Greek lemon cake 

Serves 12

425g cake flour
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 eggs
400g caster sugar, divided
250g butter, softened
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
2 tablespoons lemon juice
250g natural yoghurt

1. Preheat oven to 180 °C / Gas mark 4. Grease one 25cm tube cake pan.
2. Sift the flour, bicarb and salt together. Set mixture aside.
3. Separate the eggs. In a large bowl beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add 100g of the sugar, beating until stiff glossy peaks form. Set aside.
4. Cream butter, remaining sugar, egg yolks, lemon zest and lemon juice together until fluffy. Add flour mixture alternately with the yoghurt to the egg yolk mixture. Gently fold in the egg whites and pour the mixture into the prepared pan.
5. Bake in the preheated oven for 50 to 60 minutes. Let cake cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to finish cooling.


Serves 18

250g (9 oz) butter, melted
500g (1 1/4 lb) chopped walnuts
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 packet filo pastry
200g (7 oz) caster sugar
250ml (9 fl oz) water
8 tablespoons Greek honey
1 large piece of lemon peel

1. Preheat oven to 180 C / Gas mark 4. Butter the bottom and sides of a 23x33cm baking dish.
2. Toss nuts with cinnamon. Set aside.
3. Unroll filo pastry. Cut whole stack at once to fit the dimensions of the baking dish. Cover filo with a damp cloth to keep from drying out as you work. Place two sheets of filo in dish, buttering the top layer. Repeat until you have 8 sheets layered. Sprinkle 2 to 3 tablespoons of nut mixture on top. Top with two sheets of filo, butter, nuts, layering as you go. The top layer should be about 6 to 8 sheets deep.
4. Using a sharp knife, cut into diamond or square shapes all the way to the bottom of the dish. Bake for about 50 minutes until baklava is golden and crisp.
5. Make sauce while baklava is baking: Boil sugar and water until sugar is dissolved. Add honey and lemon peel. Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, then remove from heat and allow to cool. Remove lemon peel and discard.
6. Remove baklava from oven and immediately pour cooled sauce over it. Let cool. Leave it uncovered as it gets soggy if wrapped.


Makes 25 loukoumades

2 (7g) sachets dried active baking yeast
250ml warm water
125ml warm milk
4 tablespoons caster sugar
1 teaspoon salt
75g unsalted butter, softened
3 eggs
500g plain flour
175g honey
125ml water
1 litre vegetable oil or as needed
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1. Sprinkle the yeast over the warm water in a small bowl. The water should be no more than 40 degrees C. Let stand for 5 minutes until the yeast softens and begins to form a creamy foam. In a large bowl, mix the warm milk, sugar and salt and mix to dissolve. Pour the yeast mixture into the milk mixture and stir to combine.
2. Beat in the butter, eggs and flour until the mixture forms a smooth, soft dough. Cover the bowl and let rise until doubled in bulk, about 30 minutes. Stir the dough well, cover and let rise 30 more minutes.
3. Mix honey and 125ml of water in a saucepan, bring to the boil over medium-high heat. Turn off the heat and let the honey syrup cool.
4. Heat oil in a deep-fat fryer or large saucepan to 180 degrees C. Oil should be about 5cm deep.
5. Place a large table or soup spoon in a glass of water near the batter. Scoop up about 2 tablespoons of dough per puff with the wet spoon, drop it into the wet palm of your hand and roll it back into the spoon to create a round shape. Do not overhandle the puffy soft dough. Drop the dough balls into the hot oil in batches, wetting the spoon each time you make a dough ball. Fry in the hot oil until golden brown on the bottom and roll them over to cook the other side, 2 to 3 minutes per batch. Gently set the loukoumades aside to drain on kitchen towels.
6. Place the loukoumades on a baking tray, drizzle them with honey syrup and sprinkle with cinnamon. Serve warm.

Cook's note
You can also infuse the cinnamon into the syrup.


Serves 15

1.4L full fat milk
170g semolina
3 1/2 tablespoons cornflour
200g caster sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 eggs
100g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
175g butter, melted
12 sheets filo pastry
250ml water
200g caster sugar

1. Pour milk into a large saucepan, and bring to the boil over medium heat. In a medium bowl, whisk together the semolina, corn-flour, 200g sugar and salt so there are no cornflour clumps. When milk comes to the boil, gradually add the semolina mixture, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Cook, stirring constantly until the mixture thickens and comes to a full boil. Remove from heat, and set aside. Keep warm.
2. In a large bowl, beat eggs with an electric mixer at high speed. Add 100g of sugar, and whip until thick and pale, about 10 minutes. Stir in vanilla.
3. Fold the whipped eggs into the hot semolina mixture. Partially cover the pan, and set aside to cool.
4. Preheat the oven to 180 C / Gas 4.
5. Butter a 22x33cm baking dish, and layer 7 sheets of filo into the dish, brushing each one with butter as you lay it in. Pour the custard into the dish over the filo, and cover with the remaining 5 sheets of filo, brushing each sheet with butter as you lay it down.
6. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes in the preheated oven, until the top is crisp and the custard filling has set.
7. In a small saucepan, stir together the remaining sugar and water. Bring to the boil. When the Galaktoboureko comes out of the oven, spoon the hot sugar syrup over the top, particularly the edges. Cool completely before cutting and serving. Store in the refrigerator.

(Greek Biscuits)

Makes 24 biscuits

225g Butter, softened
55g Icing Sugar
1 Egg Yolk
1 Tablespoon Brady/Ouzo
350g Flour
115g Ground Almonds
1 Packet Icing sugar for Dusting

1. Mix the butter and the icing sugar until light and fluffy.
2. Beat in the egg yolk and brandy, then the flour and almonds to form a soft, firm dough.
3. Knead the mixture together.
4. Cut the dough into 24 pieces and roll each into a desired shape or use a cookie cutter.
5. Place on a well greased/floured baking tray, allowing room for spreading slightly.
6. Bake for 15 minutes or until firm to the touch at 180°C.
7. Meanwhile, sift a layer of icing sugar into a large roasting tin.
8. Remove biscuits, allow to cool slightly then place in the tin in a single layer.
9. Sift over more icing sugar (generously) and cool for 3-4 hours.

(Cinnamon Syrup)

1 kg sugar
3 cups water
3 leaves moscholouloudou armparorizas
2 cinnamon sticks
2.3 cloves
1 red dye k.glykou pastry.

1. In a saucepan put the sugar, cinnamon sticks, cloves the armparoriza. Add the water about 2.5 cups of water.
2. Put the pan into the fire and begins to boil anakatefete.Afinete for 10 minutes, and add color. Stir well. and remove the pan from the heat.
3. Allow to cool and put it in bottles in the refrigerator. Drunk as a beverage. Beverage of the village Pili.


Serves 10

3 egg whites
1 cup sugar
1/8 tsp. kosher salt
1 lb. finely ground blanched almonds
1/8 tsp. almond extract
2 tbsp. lemon liqueur or limoncello
30  whole blanched almonds

1. Heat oven to 325°. Put egg whites, 1/2 tbsp. sugar, and half the salt in a medium bowl. Using a hand mixer set on medium speed or a whisk, beat the whites until soft peaks form; set aside.
2. In a large bowl, combine the ground almonds and extract and the remaining sugar and salt. Fold the egg white mixture into the almond mixture.
3. Wet your hands with the lemon liqueur and divide dough into walnut-size pieces. Working with one dough piece at a time, roll dough between the palms of your hands to form a ball. Transfer dough balls to 2 parchment-lined baking sheets. Flatten each ball slightly by pushing your thumb into the dough to make a dimple. Put one almond in the middle of each dimple.
4. Bake, rotating the baking sheets from top to bottom and front to back halfway through baking, until cookies are pale golden and set, 20–25 minutes. The cookies will harden as they cool. Transfer the baking sheets to 2 cooling racks and let cool. Cookies will keep for 7 days stored at room temperature in an airtight container.

Stafyli gliko

2 lb grapes (if you want seedless candied grapes, use seedless grapes!)
1 lb sugar
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup water
1/8 tsp salt
1 TB lemon juice
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
a few cloves (optional)

1. Remove the stems from the grapes and rinse them. Put them in a pot with the sugar, salt, water and orange juice.
2. Boil for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. Let them sit overnight, and the next day boil them (gently) until the syrup thickens, roughly 45 minutes to an hour. Then add the lemon juice, stir it in, and turn the heat off.
4. When the grapes have cooled to room temperature add the vanilla. Pack into jars. (Optional: put a few cloves into each jar).