Greek cuisine is comprised of many ingredients to create the final dish. A number of cooking utensils help meld those ingredients into a delectable meal. You could certainly survive without Greek-leaning kitchenware, and you may even consider them nonessential. But many of these utensils ease the cooking experience by making the food's creation more convenient and, sometimes, more authentic.
Most Greek dishes rely on the aroma and taste of fresh herbs. Putting the herbs on a cutting board and chopping them with a knife is obviously an option. An alternative is an herb cutter, which is a multi-wheeled utensil that is run over the herbs. This slices and dices the herbs without risking fingers. Be careful when washing the cutter, as the blades are extremely sharp.
Olives are a mainstay of Greek cooking, either raw or cooked. The only problem with fresh olives are the hard pits embedded in the skin. Instead of cutting them out with a knife, an easy tool is the olive pitter, which with one squeeze presses the pit out of the olive, keeping the skin nearly intact. When shopping at cookware shops, the olive pitter might also be called a cherry pitter.
Olive Oil Cans
While pouring olive oil, a mainstay of Greek cooking, out of a bottle is perfectly fine, many cooks prefer to use metal olive oil cans. Coming in various sizes and shapes, the cans' spouts make it easier to measure the liquid, particularly when using measuring spoons or pouring atop a salad.
A cheese grater is a handy kitchen gadget for Greek cooking, as well as other ethnic dishes. A standard four-sided grater will handle both hard and soft cheeses. So should a hand-held rotary grater. The cheese is placed in a small bin, clamped in place, and then the handle is rotated to grate the cheese onto salads, breads or cooked meals.
Mortar & Pestle
Crushing herbs is simple by using a mortar and pestle. These handy kitchen tools come in a variety of sizes and are usually made of wood or metal. They are attractive when displayed on a kitchen counter or shelf, as well.
Another way to incorporate the fragrance of spices in Greek dishes is by using a spice grater. These are small hand-held graters, similar in appearance to cheese graters (which can be substituted).
Phyllo, or filo, dough is a popular wrapping for meats, fruits and cheeses. To keep the dough moist, butter or olive oil is brushed across the dough. Various sizes of pastry brushes are used to coat the dough.
- The Frugal Gourmet Cooks Three Ancient Cuisines; Jeff Smith; 1990