Monday, December 22, 2008

Athena's Xmas party

So when you get an invite to a small get-together, you think that it is just that. The girls you always hang out with, maybe a couple of extras you haven't seen in a while... But you're Greek and the person's house you are going to is Greek, what are you thinking? Of course there are going to be 500 people there. Of course you shouldn't eat anything all day long b/c there is going to be 5 tons worth of food there. And of course it's going to be good. Of course you shouldn't actually bake anything b/c who is going to eat it when there are 15 other desserts, but duh, you're Greek and you don't go anywhere without something edible. Right? Yep, so I brought an apple pie. Yeah, look at all this food. Catered by Pops.

This was a really yummy bloody Mary dip (above). Athena's friend, Laura makes and sells these mixes. I'll have to find out the name...tSome spinach artichoke dip and tzatziki sauce from Costco's. Olive Bruschetta

Georgia made an eclair cake, same recipe you can find here. It doesn't look as pretty, but it was still good. The only difference b/w hers and Kraft's is that she lets it sit longer than 3 hours. She usually makes it two days ahead of time so that the graham crackers get really soft. Tastes so much better that way.

My apple pie... mmm.... It was good, but it was wet... Apparently I should have let the apples drain some more before I put them in the pie to bake....

The crust recipe I used is the same one we used on school. I liked the crust so much, I have used it since then for other pies and it is still great. Here is the recipe:

Ruth Wacker's Never Fail Pie Crust (From the Congo Cook Book, 1961)

4 1/2 cups sifted flour
1 1/2 teaspoon salt (I used only 1 teaspoon b/c I used salted butter)
1 1/2 cup of shortening (or lard or butter, I used butter, very cold butter)
2 eggs
1/2 cup cold water (or more if needed)
1 1/2 tablespoon vinegar

Combine flour and salt. Cut in the shortening.

Beat the eggs, water and vinegar in a separate bowl. Add to the flour mixture.

Form the dough. If it is a bit dry, add some more water. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill it slightly before rolling out. I made the dough the night before and kept it in the fridge overnight. I let it sit out a bit before rolling it out, but I don't think I'll do that again. It was kinda hard to roll out....

For the inside, everyone has a different way of making their filling. I used 3 lbs of Granny Smith apples, sliced in half and then in thin slices. I tossed them with 1/2 cup flour, a few teaspoons of cinnamon, 1/4 cup brown sugar and a few squirts of lemon juice. I tossed it all together, put it in the crust, dolloped some butter on top and covered it w/ the remaining crust.

I think that it was runny b/c I had the cut apples soaking in cold water and lemon juice so they wouldn't brown. I think that I should have drained them better. Or cut them after I rolled out the dough so they wouldn't have absorbed so much water... The excess liquid I drained out tasted just like apple juice though, so at least it didn't taste bad. :) And as you can see, there wasn't that much liquid. You live, you learn!


Bellini Valli said...

It's at times like this that I wish I were Greek!!

NikiTheo said...

It's not about being Greek; it's all about knowing one! Then you get invited to all of the Greek parties!

pixen said...

HEeeheee...first time I was invited to my Greek friend's home for dinner, I nearly fainted! I told him, My family are not a huge eater and told him not to make that much. He assured me that I will have my light dinner. When I entered the dining room, I thought they were inviting other friends as well. " No, it's only for 5 adults, a 10 yr old girl (my son was only 10 mths then)" WHat I saw on the table... could feed at least 20 adults! I know Greek family would take 'no' for answer when comes to food but as much as I love food... I have to crawl back to the hotel if I continued to eat...LOL

But I love Greek food, hospitality and her people.

Happy New Year Niki!