Dolmades are a must do
The Greek Festival has come and gone for another two years, but for those that attended, it was a fabulous affair that showcased all things Greek, with one of the highlights being the food of course. The festival, which is held every two years, is something I do not miss. It’s one of those affairs that I attend with an empty stomach, because I know that I’ll be grazing for the duration of the time that I’m there–indulging in the tried and true favorites and trying new food items, because life is just plain boring if you have to always eat the same old thing. The festival always provides an opportunity for me to indulge in fabulous eats, so I never miss it.
This year, unfortunately, it was with a sad heart that I did not find myself traipsing around the grounds of the Greek Orthodox Church on West Hill Street, eating with my eyes first, then letting my tastebuds agree or disagree with their decision. But even though I could not attend the Greek Festival, my mother, Jestina, and my six-year-old niece, Waltonique, and a very good friend, Garnel, made sure the Greek Festival came to me–on both days no less. I may have missed out on the folks and the fun, but certainly not the food.
On the Saturday, my mom and niece arrived at my home laden with containers filled with goodies I couldn’t wait to dive into–from the roasted lamb’s tongue to the grilled octopus, fried smelts(fried small fish)and cod fish balls. Of course the fried smelts and grilled octopus are two of those tried and true favorites that I search out every time the festival is held, but this year was the first time I tried the roasted lamb tongue and the Baccalo and Potato Cakes.
The roasted lamb tongue was absolutely delicious and one of my new favorites. It was tender and flavorful and even stood up well to being reheated. I found that the flavors actually developed more as the roasted lamb’s tongue sat. Suffice it to say, I could not eat it all in one sitting, but from start to finish it was a delight. This dish is on my must have for 2013.
Satisfied with the offerings I’d gotten on day one, I was pleasantly prised when Garnel showed up at my doorstep with goodies from the second day, and the offerings were completely different. She was the bearer of goodies like dolmades(meat and rice stuffed grapevine leaves), stuffed tomatoes, the classic Greek feta salad, pastichio and the always delicious spanakopita(spinach and feta phyllo pastry). None of the dishes disappointed.
And can I say it was my first taste of the dolmades which I always seemed to pass up before. But never again I say, never again. Dolmades are something I have to order from now on. And while they had run out of lettuce for the Greek salad Garnel brought to my house, I realized I didn’t even miss it. The flavors were wonderful all the same. Surprisingly if I had gone on my own, the Greek Salad with Feta and Kalamata Olives I would have passed by, because ordering that and a gyro seems so . . . well . . . plain. I know there are people who attend the festival each time it’s held just for these two items, and like I always say, always do you, but I feel they can be had year round, so I always opt to try something new, and encourage people to not pass up an opportunity to taste something new and exciting because they just may like it. Of course, my niece’s favorite was the fried kalamari rings and my mom loves the fried smelt.
Even though I wasn’t there physically, I was still able to satisfy the foodie in me–thanks to my mom and a dear friend, even though they nowhere scratched the surface of what was to be had. Here’s to good eats!