Taste the flavours of Greece during this three-hour or so small-group cooking class, where you'll learn how to make dolmades, pilau, chicken youvetsi, loukoumades, roasted lemon potatoes, home made bread and many more – and then feast on it all, while enjoying amazing ocean views.
Where: McCrae, Mornington Peninsula
We start our morning with a good cup of Greek coffee, for those who dare (or a latte or cappuccino), served with home-made Greek biscuits. We will then get stuck into some serious cooking. Under Niki's watchful eye, you will prepare a variety of Greek dishes:
The Spring (October and November) cooking class, we will be making Greek lemon roasted potatoes, biftekia (oven roasted rissoles), spanahorizo (spinach rice pilau), home made bread and for dessert Loukoumades (delicious sweet Greek donoughts). All of these whilst enjoying the Mornington Peninsula coast line.
For the December, January and February class, we will be making gemista (vegetarian stuffed vegetables), burghul wheat pilau with Greek yoghurt, chicken youvetsi (chicken and pasta casserole) and – of course! – Greek salad. Then we will sit down to eat it all, enjoying the beautiful ocean views and washing it down with some great wine. We finish off with a delicious dessert – bougatsa, a delicious semolina custard parcel.
For our Autumn classes (March, April and May), which cover Easter, we will be cooking some festive food. We will learn what spices are used to marinade chicken souvlaki, cook it and of course enjoy eating it. We will also be making home made pitta bread (much nicer than store bought) and a must whenever you're having a souvlaki - tzatziki. The dinner table is never complete without the greek salad and we mustn't forget the spanakopita. Just when you thought you're full and couldn't possibly fit anymore, you'll amaze yourself at the amount of Loukoumades you can actually eat!!! A dessert that is loved by all, not matter how full you are, there is always room for these amazing greek doughnuts.
The fruits of your labour
After a memorable day with an amazing backdrop of ocean views, you'll go home with a bellyful of food, new friends, new recipes, lots of stories and tales, and a seriously expanded cooking repertoire.
The kit required
Bring lots of enthusiasm, an empty stomach, and stories to share with new friends. Please wear comfortable clothes and closed shoes.
Greek-Cypriot Niki grew up surrounded by great cooks – her mum, both grandmothers, and four aunts – so it was inevitable that she too would end up a cook. After a childhood spent refining her skills, recipes (and patience!), Niki's first foray into the culinary world was spurred on by Matt Preston's rave review of her home-made souvlaki ('Home Sweet Souvlaki Home', the Age Epicure, 2004). Niki quit her 9-to-5 job and took the plunge of opening her own cafe and catering business. Over the years she has been invited to give cooking demonstrations for many food festivals, including the Food and Wine Festival, the Antipodes Festival (Lonsdale Street Festival) and the Oakleigh Glendi. Niki now owns a cooking school, My Greek Kitchen, specialising in Greek cuisine, which operates from South Melbourne Market Cooking School, and in Templestowe, and on the Mornington Peninsula.