All posts tagged: cyprus

Homemade Baklava and OSO Honey

When we first moved to Cyprus, my parents and I would regularly go out on a Sunday. With my dad driving, we would travel along the coast or into the mountains. We didn’t really know where we would end up, but that was part of the fun. What wasn’t so much fun was when, one day, we stopped to pick some oranges from a tree, bit into them, and discovered they were incredibly bitter Marmalade oranges! Our fault for pinching them, really! On our travels, we would stop at a local artopoieo (bakery) and pick up a few pastries (both savoury and sweet) to park up and eat somewhere with a great view. One of the things we would often buy is baklava, a filo pastry dish, drizzled in honey. Exploring the mountains, we would come across rows and rows of brightly coloured beehives. Honey was important to Cypriot life and we would eat it on lots of different dishes. To quote P S Lambis; “Greeks have viewed honey not only as an important food, but …

Baking Focaccia with Cypriot ΟΣΟ Olive Oil

A couple of weeks ago, a London-based company called P S Lambis started following me on Twitter. The name caught my attention, clearly looking very Cypriot, having grown up in Cyprus myself. The second I visited their website, I was in love with their products and everything their business stood for. Landing on the homepage, with a looped video of a Cypriot hillside landscape, I was transported back home. P S Lambis was set up by the Lambis family in memory of their father, Pambos, and the company produces olive oil, honey and coffee, (all made in Cyprus) under the brand ‘ΟΣΟ’ (OSO). In Greek this means ‘as long’ or ‘as much’. All of these products played a key role in the life of Pambos Lambis. The company’s website has a ‘stories’ section written in a script form, re-enacting moments of his life that explain why these food items were so important to him.  ‘The Journey‘ especially brought a tear to my eye. I related to this through my own family’s comings and goings from Cyprus, …

Easter Cooking: Lamb Moussaka

Moussaka was always one of mine and my Mum’s favourite dishes when we were in Cyprus, but it’s admittedly a bit of a hassle to make. Some of the local restaurants we went to used to ask you to order it in advance, so they could get it ready, as they would only serve fresh food. I don’t mind making it myself when I have the time, so I thought that I’d try giving it a go over Easter using both lamb mince and leftover lamb from our roast on Good Friday. I’ve used bits and bobs from different recipes over the years, but this is what I tend to stick to: Ingredients 2 aubergines cut into 1cm/½in slices 3 fairly large potatoes, cut into 1cm/½in slices 500g lamb mince 500g sliced lamb pieces (as mentioned earlier, taken from our previous roast leg of lamb) 1 onion finely chopped 2 garlic cloves crushed 1 tsp fresh oregano  1 tsp fresh mint, chopped 1 tsp ground cumin 2 tsp ground cinnamon (I sometimes increase this, as I love the …

Easter Cooking & Baking Eggstravaganza! April 2015

I always used to go back home to Cyprus for Easter and I loved it – it’s my favourite time of year there. The Cypriots celebrate it even more than Christmas, and there are so many amazing foods, such as avgolemono (chicken, lemon and egg soup – sounds hideous, tastes great!) and tsoureki (a type of bread, with hardboiled eggs dyed red). For the past few years, however, Tim and I have spent Easter at home in London. The first year that we spent here, we ended up having a bit of a cooking/baking marathon, and we’ve kept up this tradition ever since! It started with us roasting a leg of lamb that was far too big for us, so we ended up eating it for the whole weekend, trying out different recipes each evening. We’ve been looking forward to this ‘eggstravaganza’ (*cough*) for a while, and this year we even planned out what we would eat and ordered in the ingredients in advance. As you can see, there’s a lot, and this isn’t even …

Cyprus Series: Yialos Tavern, Paphos

As you may know from my ‘about‘ section, I grew up in Cyprus. We lived there until my dad sadly passed away in 2013, and my mum is now living back in the UK, in North Yorkshire, where I was born. We have so many great memories from the island of love, and over the years, we visited many fabulous restaurants. In fact, most Sundays were spent in a large group of family friends at one of the many local restaurants, where lunch could happily take up the entire afternoon and continue long into the evening. The tourism industry has suffered in recent years in Cyprus – it has become more expensive to travel there and most of the travel operators and big hotels offer all inclusive deals. The local restaurants are suffering because people don’t need to leave their hotels as often. As such, I’ve decided to do a ‘Cyprus Series’ of blog posts on GTBG, in the hope that anyone who might be thinking of going on holiday might be inspired to check …