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Saturday, September 26, 2020

Greek Chef Follows Her Dream in Preserving Peloponnesian Dishes

Catherine Tsounis
Catherine Tsounis
Contributing Editor The copyrights for these articles are owned by the Hellenic News of America. They may not be redistributed without the permission of the owner. The opinions expressed by our authors do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Hellenic News of America and its representatives.

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“I don’t want Greek recipes lost,” explained Mrs. Anastasia Lagga, Professional Chef/Author and TV Host. “I hosted a Greek cuisine TV Show never considering financial payment. I followed my dream.” Mrs. Lagga is known in Greece as the well-known chef from Arcadia in the mountains of the Peloponnese.

“The Housewife’s Recipes” book cover.

Anastasia Lagga was born and lives in Tripoli. She is a retired municipal employee and the mother of four children and many grandchildren. Her passion and love are cooking all Greek dishes. She has published two books with the titles “The Housewife’s Recipes”. The first book dealt with confectionery recipes in 2003. In 2004 the second book in this series has Greek main dish, appetizers, and soup cooking recipes. Her recipes have been published in newspapers, magazines, and the internet featuring the rich cuisine of the Peloponnese. Her culinary skills have helped in the regional development of Arcadia.

Pepper pie.

“My husband, Nick, created my Facebook page,” she explained. “All the Facebook information and photographs are the result of his professional efforts. I gave five to six years of professional cooking and sweets lessons. I had classes of 15 students, creating full course meals.” She has given interviews on shows of both local radio stations (Municipal Radio of Tripoli 91.5 FM & Radio Station of the Metropolis of Argolida) and other Pan-Hellenic broadcasts (Piraeus Church 91.2 FM 89 of Greece & Radio Station). The chef oversaw the “Cooking – Confectionery Team” of K.A.P.I. Municipality of Tripoli for a period of 4 years.

Arcadian Yogurt Pie

The Mediterranean diet is key to a long life. Scientists have been connecting Greece’s cuisine to better health and a long life. Researchers are making discoveries about the Mediterranean diet’s ability to boost good bacteria to its association with lower inflammation and less insulin resistance. The Mediterranean diet was awarded the number one spot in U.S. News & World Reports 2019 healthiest rankings. Fruits, vegetables, fish, legumes, olive oil, wine, whole grains have antioxidants that decrease cardiovascular disease, decreases cancers and degenerative diseases.1
Chef Lagga shared with all on her Facebook page the following recipes. “Peppers are plentiful in various varieties,” she said. “I suggest the following recipe for a delicious pepper pie. With health and good mood to enjoy nice recipes! Good luck and good appetite !!!”
 
Pepper Pie
 
Materials (for three rolls):
12 crust sheets
5 cups grated feta cheese
1 cup grated cream cheese
3 lightly beaten eggs
1 green pepper cut into small pieces
1 yellow pepper cut into small pieces
1 red pepper cut into small pieces
1 orange pepper cut into small pieces
white pepper, a little nutmeg
 Cup of oil
 Cup buttermilk
 
Implementation:
 
1. Beat eggs, pepper, nutmeg, add cheese, peppers, mix and divide into three parts.
2. Butter the four sheets and at the beginning of the sheets, pour one part of the filling all over the width, wrap it in a roll and put it in a buttered pan.
3. Continue and make the other two rolls, butter all three rolls, carve them lightly into oblique pieces.
4. Bake them in a preheated oven at 180o C for about 30΄ – 40΄. – feeling nice in Somewhere in Tripoli.
            I would like to share with you the recipe with which I participated in the festival “Gastronomy Days 2015 – Peloponnese Honored Gastronomic Destination 2015” held at the Benaki Museum!
 
Arcadian Yogurt Pie
 
Ingredients for the preparation of the recipe:
 
1. 250 grams (8.8 ounces)of butter
2. 500 grams (17.6 ounces) of sugar
3. 8 eggs
4. 50 gr.(dash .1 ounce) cognac
5. 2 teaspoons full of cream
6. 1 teaspoon full of baking soda
7. 2 vanillas
8. lemon zest
9. 400 gr. (14.1 ounces) yogurt
10. 650 grams (22.9 ounces) of hard flour (No1)
 
Ingredients for the syrup:
1. 500 grams (17.6 ounces) of sugar
2. 500 grams (17.6 ounces) of water
3. a slice of lemon
 
1. Beat the butter well.
2. Then beat the meringue whites, add the sugar and yolks, beat well, combine with the butter, and continue beating.
3. Then add the vanilla, lemon zest and yogurt.
4. When you add the yogurt, do not just beat the mixture, and immediately add the flour.
5. Finally, add the brandy after dissolving the cream and soda and mix lightly.
6. Butter the pan, pour the mixture.
7. Bake in a preheated oven at 180o C  (350 F.)for about 45 minutes.
8. When it comes out of the oven, leave it to cool.
9. Make the syrup. Boil water, sugar, and lemon zest until lightly set and add to the dessert.
 
References:
1.     Rockwood, Kate. (2019, May) The World’s Healthiest Diet. HEALTH, pp. 62-63.
 
Links:
Facebook: Anastasia Lagga.
[email protected]   – email
 
Photo 1- “The Housewife’s Recipes” book cover.
Photo 2- Nick and Anastasia Lagga on a tour of the Dalmatian coast summer of 2019.
Photo3 – Pepper pie.
Photo 4 – Arcadian Yogurt Pie
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The copyrights for these articles are owned by the Hellenic News of America. They may not be redistributed without the permission of the owner. The opinions expressed by our authors do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Hellenic News of America and its representatives.