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Comment: Edition: 1; Hardback, Missing Dust Jacket, some cover corner and edge wear, Otherwise pages are clean, tight and mostly crisp
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Meze: Small Plates to Savor and Share from the Mediterranean Table Hardcover – June 3, 2003

4.1 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

To confuse meze with antipasto or tapas is to miss the point. These small plates of Greek deliciousness come to us from a Mediterranean world of mid-afternoon snacking, drinking, and talking. The pace is leisurely, the content simple, the effect extraordinary. Early on in Meze Diane Kochilas, award-winning author of The Glorious Foods of Greece, sets the prototypic meze stage: two village codgers holding down either side of a small table; two glasses and a carafe of raki between them; a plate with some bread, olives, air-dried anchovies, cucumber sticks, and cheese. They do not sit at the table so much as beside the table, the better to take in the world.

And thus it is with meze. It's not about sitting down to eat as much as being present to exchange ideas, enjoy a glass of wine or spirits, and snack on taste treats that enliven the palate and pull all the threads of the whole into one. Kochilas divides Meze into "Dips, Spreads, and Relishes"; "Savory Salads"; "Small Egg Dishes"; "Phyllo Pies"; "Finger Foods and Fried Treats"; "Vegetable and Bean Mezethes"; "A Sea's Bounty"; "From Meatballs to Kebabs"; and, the "Meze Pantry." She provides sources for ingredients. And she includes enlightening notes on Greek wine and spirits, perfect for serving with these small dishes. She is truly a master of it all and a delight to read. When was the last time you mixed garlicky yogurt with dried apricots, or baked figs with oregano? Put your hand in Kochilas's oven mitt. She'll take you to a new, delicious, life-invigorating territory. --Schuyler Ingle

From Publishers Weekly

Mezethes (plural of meze, which means middle) are little Mediterranean dishes designed to complement a beverage, tease the tastebuds and encourage diners to linger around a table for good conversation, says Kochilas (The Glorious Foods of Greece), and "variety, playfulness, and surprise" are key to their preparation. Her nicely illustrated cookbook offers 80 meze recipes to pair with ouzo or Greek wines, and shows American home cooks how a varied gathering of Greek, Turkish and Lebanese flavors-olives, anchovies, cured beef, cheese, good bread-can make for a perfect brunch or buffet spread (though, Kochilas is careful to note, a "meze spread is not meant to be a meal, but a nosh"). Her chapters cover culinary themes such as Dips, Spreads and Relishes, Small Egg Dishes, Finger Foods and Fried Treats, and A Sea's Bounty of Mezethes; dishes range from Fluffy Fish-Roe Dip with Ground Almonds (a variant of the classic taramosalata), to Three-Cheese Phyllo Triangles with Onions and Yogurt, to Marinated Panfried Shrimp in the Shell, to Grilled Greek Meat Patties with Chopped Tomatoes, Spicy Yogurt, and Lemon. (Don't let the long names fool you-these dishes are never difficult to prepare.) These piquant, lively foods are "a savory flirtation," and an array of them on a table is a delightful thing.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow Cookbooks; 1 edition (June 3, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0688175112
  • ISBN-13: 978-0688175115
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 0.2 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #925,544 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By B. Marold HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on November 18, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Cooking from this book was a great joy after having spent several days with books dealing with French haute cuisine. I heartily recommend this book to just about anyone as a source of tasty, easy, traditional dishes. The only reservations would be to people who may not have the time or inclination to search out some of the speciality ingredients.
Almost all recipes in this book use fewer than 12 ingredients and the technique rarely takes more than four (4) steps, taking no more than a half page of text. This is not exactly quick cooking, although there are a fair number of quick recipes herein. Some recipes do require long marinades, but very few require long cooking. Most heat is from either a quick saute or a grill.
The issues with ingredients, especially for those who like to stay authentic, is probably solved if you live in a large city and there is a Greek or middle eastern grocery available. It is also probably not a big issue if you live near a `megamart' which carries a generous supply of Greek and Turkish staples. Needless to say, even if you live in the sticks, there are internet sources for everything. The most important speciality ingredients are:
Greek feta - There is barrel cured and tin cured. Some recipes recommend one type. Some the other.
Other Greek Cheeses - Popular Italian cheeses like ricotta will substitute for most requirements.
Greek Oregano - Dried
Greek / Eastern Mediterranian yogurt - Fortunately, there is an easy way to make plain yogurt work.
Dried Mint - Yes, dried. Fresh mint is also commonly used.
Greek Extra Virgin Olive Oil - `What is grown together goes together'. But Italian or Spanish will work.
Phyllo - Supermarket Phyllo is fine.
Octopus - The national seafood of Greece.
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By A Customer on September 1, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Busy with bowls of savory Bread Salad with Watermelon, Feta, and Red Onion and Little Meatballs Stuffed with Olives, thunderstorms couldn't stop us from enjoying the last weekend of Summer. I found numerous recipes in Meze's index calling for different combinations of the just-picked vegetables from my mom's lovingly tended garden. Baby Eggplants with Herbs & Bulgur was the visual star of our Meze-covered table: luxurious eggplants with savory herb-flecked stuffing baked over a rich tomato "sauce" was amazingly simple to make. Author Kochilas demystifies favorite ingredients like thick, creamy Greek-style Tangy Yogurt [with Sauteed Carrots and Mint] by sprinkling Notes on technique throughout her book. It was a spectacular summer feast. And I can't wait til Fall to try the Pumpkin-Cheese Triangles.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
First off, I bought this after it retired, and want to say that I was very happy with the seller, "the book treasury." The book was new as stated by the seller, and I received it within 2 weeks. I would purchase from them again. That being said, the book is just okay to me, and I am 100% Greek! Meze basically means small plates in Greek, and we serve them usually with a glass of wine as a sampling of plates. There are some recipes that are pretty good. Some are from the islands and villages of Greece and may not be familiar to someone who is not Greek. That could be the reason for some of the negative reviews. For me, the recipes are fair. I would though, highly recommend some of miss kochilas' other books as I am a big fan of hers. One is the " The Country cooking of Greece " and another is "Ikaria." Both of these books are beautifully done. Not only are the recipes authentic and delicious, the author also writes about the people of Greece and their culture and some customs. Ikaria is known as the island in Greece where people forget to die! The people on this island live a very healthy and active lifestyle, and take care of each other as a community. It's not just what we eat, but who we savor and share it with that contributes to longevity.
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Format: Hardcover
Lovely book, lovely photos...BUT I am disappointed in the recipes. Admittedly, I have only tried five of them, but was disappointed in all five. I am a good cook,lived in Greece for 2 years, and have been cooking Greek food for some 30 years with great success. Some of the MEZE recipes were O.K., but not REALLY good, and one was a disaster. Sorry.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book has some nice twists on traditional Greek dishes. Some of the dishes are easy and some are time consuming, but they all came out great.

I was a little disappointed that they don't have the Greek names of the items - this is clearly a book that is geared for an English-only audience.

Our favorite is the Skewered Ground Lamb Kebabs, which contain cayenne and mint.
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