Gourmand Cookbook Awards – Australian Competition

Gourmand Cookbook Awards

I have some amazing news, actually its really, really exciting news that I’m just bursting to share with you.

Greek Life a book about family, culture and foodMy book titled Greek Life (family, culture, food) won two, yes, two categories, one for MEDITERRANEAN and the other for SELF-PUBLISHED, in the prestigious Gourmand Cookbook Awards national competition for Australia. This is a defining moment in the journey of Greek Life and for me, as a first time author.

My self-published book that was put together with so much love and with a vision to pass forward the beautiful and meaningful Greek traditions and mouthwatering recipes, threaded together with the story of family, thought inspiring philosophy and full colour photography, will now compete in Gourmand International Cookbook Awards in the same categories against other countries for the Best in The World.

As a Greek Australian cookbook writer and publisher I could only have imagined the journey that would transpire, from being a freelance contributor to a magazine, the recipient of a leadership scholarship, and and invited MC and speaker at various events, and now the recipient of the Gourmand International Cookbook Awards in Australia.

Having come this far with my journey as an author of a book that I envisioned to be the best book on Greek culture to exist, is amazing, but to be acknowledged in this way is even more amazing.

Eugenia Pantahos and Greek Life a book about family, culture and foodNow I’m waiting for the Gourmand Cookbook Awards certificate to arrive together with those lovely red stickers with the words ‘winner’ that I can proudly place on my book, but I think I’ll place them on the first page, beside my signature!

Greek Life is a high quality hardcover edition that is now in its second and final print run. That means stock is limited, so now is the time to place orders for this keepsake edition. It is a beautiful and meaningful gift for those for whom Greek culture means something, the foodies, the cooks, the thinkers, the travelers, and the coffee table book lovers. Order your copies at my online shop or email me.

Wish me well in the International competition.

Fingers crossed!

Eugenia xx

 

Adelaide Dinner – The Idea of Love

ADELAIDE DINNER EVENT

Let’s explore the meaning of love, the ideas held by ancient philosophers, and what it means in our modern world. Come to join the discussion over a 3-course meal, glass of wine and tea/coffee. Bookings essential. Limited Places. Book now!

Adelaide Dinner - The Idea of Love

Greek Dolmades Recipe- Stuffed Grape Vine Leaves

Greek Dolmades Recipe – Stuffed Grape Vine Leaves

Anyone fortunate enough to sample a homemade Greek dolmades recipe, or as we sometimes affectionately call them, dolmadakia, only know too well the absolute delicious experience of savouring each mouthful of these delicate rice and herb stuffed grape vine leaves.

Usually served with a squeeze of lemon and a dollop of natural yoghurt, you can’t go past just one. The flavour is lively and zesty and these delightful little morsels literally dance on your tastebuds!

Here’s a little video I’ve put together on how to make Greek Dolmades, and if you like what you see, feel free to subscribe and be kept up to date. Enjoy!

 

Beautiful Blue and White

Beautiful Blue and White

Those who know me well also know that I have a passion for all things blue-and-white, and in my kitchen and living room especially you can see hues of this favourite colour combination, that makes me feel happy and inspired. This timeless colour palette evokes memories of the Aegean with its endless blue skies, and calm seas.

So it follows that when I brought Greek Life (family, culture, food) to life, the front cover would include this beautiful combination, in a truly authentic Hellenic theme. This timeless book inspires readers with the story of family, philosophy, beautiful photography, authentic family recipes and the principles that sit at the heart of the Mediterranean Diet.

Greek Life makes a beautiful addition to your collection, and a meaningful gift for your loved ones, and sits proudly in homes around the world. Now available as an eBook, a softcover and a hardcover.  Have you got your copies yet?

The hardcover is in limited supply. You won’t want to miss out on securing copies of this high quality book. Need convincing? Read my reviews. Find a stockist nearest you or order direct from me at jeanie.pantahos@bigpond.com

So join me as I invite you to step inside my living room and share my passion for all things blue-and-white, all set to some passionate Greek music. This little video, of course, also features my book Greek Life.

Join the celebration!

Eugenia xx

Greek Dolmadakia Recipe – Stuffed Grape Vine Leaves

Greek Dolmadakia Recipe – Stuffed Grape Vine Leaves

Spring is the best time to prepare dolmadakia, when vine leaves are young and fresh. I’ve been lucky to have access to homegrown and organic tender, young vine leaves, and once you’ve used the best, its difficult to use the preserved varieties.

So how to prepare this classic Hellenic dish? It’s very simple, a little time consuming, but its definitely worth it!

Here’s a little video of me preparing dolmadakia that you might enjoy!

Ingredients

1/4 cup olive oil

1 large onion, finely chopped

3/4 cup long grain rice

1  cup hot water, from kettle

1/4 cup finely chopped parsley

1/4 cup finely chopped mint

salt and pepper, season to taste

30-50 vine leaves, depending on size

Method

Heat the olive oil in a medium sized saucepan and saute the onion until soft and transparent.

Add the rice, stir, and cook for a couple of minutes.

Add the herbs, and season with salt and pepper.

Continue stirring for a minute before adding the hot water.

Stir well, bring to the boil, reduce heat and cook for approximately 5 minutes.

Turn off the heat and place a lid on the pot.

To prepare the vine leaves you will need a large stainless steel bowl half filled with boiling water, and another stainless steel bowl filled with cold water. Place around 5 leaves at a time in the hot water first, and press down gently to ensure they are covered.  As the leaves change colour which may take 3-5 minutes, remove the leaves gently and place into the cold water to stop the cooking process.

Take each leaf and drain over the edge of a colander that has a large dish beneath it to catch the drips of water. Repeat until all leaves have been prepared.

With the smooth side down, and the stem side towards you, place the vine leaf onto a large plate. Place a heaped teaspoon of the mixture horizontally onto the leaf, and fold in the end with stem, roll once again, and then fold in the sides, and then gently roll to form a nice little parcel.

Line the bottom of a saucepan with 3 layers of baking paper or a heatproof plate that fits snugly and place the dolmadakia on top fitting them in nice and tight. Continue rolling until all leaves are used up.

Drizzle with approximately 1/4 cup olive oil, gently pour over 3/4 cup hot water, and then finish with the juice from half a juicy lemon. Then top with an inverted plate to keep the dolmadakia from moving around in the pot. Place lid on pot and take to the stove top, bring to the boil, then reduce heat and cook for approximately 1 hour or until rice is cooked. You’ll need to have a little sneak peak. When ready, turn off the heat and leave the pot to sit until completely cool and all the liquid has been absorbed.

Dolmadakia usually taste better the next day, so if you can resist, when they have cooled put them onto a serving plate and place in the refrigerator. Enjoy with a dollop of Greek natural yoghurt, a bowl of kalamata olives, wedges of tomatoes, slices of cucumber, some continental bread, and wash down with a crisp white wine.

Kali Orexi!

Eugenia xx

 

Greek Kolliva Recipe for Honoring Our Loved Ones

Greek Kolliva Recipe for Honouring Our Loved Ones

My father has been remembered at a 9-day memorial service. As is traditional in a Greek Orthodox Memorial Service, there is some preparation required. My sister baked the Artos Bread and I prepared the Kolliva, that special Greek recipe prepared for honouring our loved ones,  and these were all blessed and served at a short family service at the cemetery.

Greek Kolliva are especially prepared for honouring those who have passed, symbolizing the circle of death and rebirth.

Kolliva Mixture

Boiled clean wheat, raisins, currants, walnuts, almonds, pomegranate, parsley, cinnamon and cloves are mixed together and then covered with ground toasted sesame seeds and topped with a layer of loose icing sugar.The kolliva, that represent the promise of eternal life, are then decorated with the initials of the deceased and other motifs.

Decorated Kolliva by Eugenia Pantahos 
There is something quite reverent in preparing the Artos bread, the Prosfero Bread (to take to Church), and the Kolliva, and my family have honoured my mother over the last 7 years in this way, and now we are honouring our father. Memory Eternal.
Artos Bread and Kolliva Eugenia Pantahos
Explanation of traditions together with recipes can be found on pages 172-179 of Greek Life. You too can learn step-by-step how to honour your loved ones, be it for the 40 day, 3 month 6 month, 9 month or 12 month memorials.
Greek Life is available at my online shop, and from my national stockists.
With love and remembrance for my dear parents.
Eugenia xx

Farewell to our Patriarch

Farewell to our Patriarch

John DesyllasThe photo to the left is my father sitting on a bench in Elder Park, Adelaide the day after he arrived in Australia, having left my mother and their three children in Greece to seek opportunities in Australia. He is a man filled with hopes and dreams. Circa early 1956.

With hard work, sacrifice, and a vision for his family, and with much dedication, a life was created in Australia, and it would take six and half year before my mother and their three children would be reunited.

We benefited from the choices and sacrifices my parents made, and have made them proud and happy. Together they lived a full life with their family, their community work, and lots of travel and shared experiences catching up on the lost years.

The days after my father passed away, we received over 120 people into his home where as a family we received condolences. As is customary in Greek Orthodox tradition, those visiting brought jars of Greek coffee, bottles of Brandy, and plates of Paximadia (Greek Lenten Sweet Rusks). These offerings help the family cater for the many visitors who will want to visit the grieving family, and also come in useful for serving at the wake and other memorial services.

John DesyllasWe have farewelled our father to a standing room only service at St George Greek Orthodox Church and afterwards the wake and celebration of his life was held at the Elion Society “Olympic Flame’ Hall, where he was a founding member and has served the community continuously for 45 years. Over 320 people came to the hall to share in a meal, drink to his memory and to honour our father.

He was a loved and devoted father of 5, adored pappou of 17, and a cherished great-pappou of 22. A true gentleman, a patriarch, a father and a friend ❤

As a family we are honoured that so many people came to pay their respects, and some travelled from far away and interstate to do so.

He will be missed deeply.

Eugenia xx

A Moment I Will Cherish

A Moment To Cherish

On Saturday I lost the man who raised me, a father who was also a friend. A man who dedicated his life to his family and to his community. A man who warmed the hearts of those he met. A man who embraced life. A man who shall always be remembered. A man whose life we will celebrate. To us he was baba, dad and daddy, to his grand-children he was papou, to his great-grand-children he was papouli, to his friends he was file (friend) and Kirie Yiannis ❤

A moment I will treasure foreverThis moment is one that I will cherish forever; my father reaching for my hand the day before he passed away.

He is now reunited with my beautiful mother ❤

Memory Eternal John Desyllas
1927 to 2017

For those who have my book Greek Life, the photo of my dashing father sitting on a bench can be found on page 22. This photograph was taken at Elder Park in Adelaide, the day after he arrived in Australia; a man filled with hopes and dreams. Circa early1956.

Many of my readers have reached out to me sending their condolences, and letting me know that they have re-read the chapter on the Story of Family and New Beginnings, providing a renewed inspiration from my parents incredible story.

My heart has a place that belonged to my father, and his memory shall always be eternal. I take comfort in the meaningful and fun relationship we enjoyed, for his guidance, sense of humour, lessons shared, and how he exemplified a dignified life through actions that represented his core values. My life is richer for having a father like mine, my children’s lives are richer for having a grandfather who was active in their lives. He will live on forever in our hearts and in our memories.

Eugenia xx

Greek Life a Self-Published Success Story

Greek Life a Self-Published Success Story

Welcome to Greek Lifestyle!

A little while ago, I learned that my book Greek Life, a celebration of family, culture, and food, was to be shared as an example of what a self-published book could look like. with regard to design, layout, and content. A much respected book store owner who fell in love with Greek Life when she first saw it, was the guest speaker at this event and she had chosen my book as an exemplary example of a self-published book!

What you need to know NOW about Greek Life

A book about family, culture and food by Eugenia Pantahos

My friend Doris had called me excitedly to let me know that that my book Greek Life was to be discussed at this event.  Naturally I jumped at the opportunity and eagerly accepted Doris’ invitation to join her, and  when I arrived I found that Doris had reserved a place for me to sit next to her . The two of us were first time authors and we listened and learned about others who had gone before us on this unknown journey of writing and publishing.

You can only imagine my surprise that Greek Life was to be showcased by such a respected person, and of course, how could I not go along to listen to what she had to say.

I sat there in awe, watching her hold up my book, and talk about not only the design elements, but also about the way in which I wrote Greek Life, describing it as tenderly written. I know that my readers express the same experience when reading Greek Life, often being moved by the story of family and the anthologies surrounding the food.

This lady was so passionate about my book, and what was amazing is that with her expertise and years of experience she instantly recognised the ‘non-negotiable’ design elements that  I had envisioned for my book.

It was a moment that I won’t forget, seeing my book being held up for all to see, and certain pages shown to the audience. Seeing this through the eyes of an audience member, but also as the author, was surreal and humbling.  I felt quietly proud to have my book discussed so passionately.I was simply amazed that my book had been chosen for this event, and thank Charmaine from Mostly Books for her heartfelt and professional views.

Eugenia Pantahos is bringing her book Greek Life to Canberra. Join her as she shares her story. Signed copies of this limited edition book available on the night. Don't miss out!!!

Greek Life – a self publishing success story

When bringing Greek Life to life, my vision was to publish a book of the highest quality, one that created a celebration around Greek culture, and one that was supported by thought inspiring philosophy and beautiful photography. Choosing the final fonts and colour schemes, and the placement of images in a meaningful way, meant that Greek Life is now regarded as the foremost book on Greek culture. That’s something I’m truly proud of.

Join those around the world who have placed Greek Life at the heart of their homes. Learn about the essence of the Mediterranean Diet and Lifestyle that is celebrated through seasonal and delicious food both for times of celebration and for observing cultural events. Be moved by the story of family and migration, and harness your inner domestic god or goddess as you experience ‘real’ Greek food. Expand your thinking with thought inspiring philosophy, and take an intimate journey with me through the pages of Greek Life.

If you would like to watch this short 2 minute expose start listening from 19 minutes in 🙂

I hope you enjoy this little clip!
Eugenia xox

Greek Life a special order

Greek Life, a special order.

Welcome to Greek Lifestyle!

I’ve been busy autographing books and getting them into my wonderful stockists. Have you got your signed copies of Greek Life yet? If not, simply visit the most convenient store in your state. The full list of stockists can be found here.

Signed copies of Greek LifeThese copies of Greek Life are being sent out as a special order and I’ve personalised and autographed them especially for my customer.

Wherever you live in Australia, be it South Australia, Victoria, Tasmania, New South Wales, Queensland, the Northern Territory or Western Australia, you’ll be sure to find a stockist nearest you.

If you live remotely, then I’m happy to personalise your books and have them sent direct to you. Simply email me at jeanie.pantahos@bigpond.com

The hardcover version of Greek Life can easily be posted overseas for those living outside Australia. As you would expect, postage and handling will cost a bit more, but I know that it will be worth it. Need convincing? Check out the amazing REVIEWS that my readers have sent me.

Greek Life is a great gift for birthdays, graduations, kitchen teas, for your bridal party, Christmas or any occasion for that matter.

I love learning what Greek Life means to those who have my book, whether they chose to buy it, or were given it as a gift. My heart skips a beat and is filled with joy and happiness, as my readers share the similarities of their family’s journey, share their thoughts, or when they send photos of the book sitting in pride of place in their homes.

A huge THANK YOU to everyone who has supported me on this journey.

Love and blessings,

Eugenia xx