Dolmades me Avgolemono – Stuffend Wine Leaves with Egg-Lemon Sauce

Spring, sun, flowers, herbs and missing Crete!

During my walk through the garden I noticed that the fist wine leaves were almost big enough to be used for one of my favourite Greek dishes: dolmadakias (diminutives of dolmades)! Now in early spring the leaves are very light, tender and even if even still small, I decided to try to make this without meat (lamb or beef

As the same times I had some asparagus on hand, I decided to prepare also the egg-lemons sauce, which is perfect for both preparations!

Usually for this recipe, we use pine nuts, but as did not have such of them just now at home, I decided to uses some previously roasted pumpkin seeds; and WOW! This was real great!

I collected only about 30 leaves about 10-12 cm wide (yes real small, but tender!) and these made 3-4 cm sized dolamadakias.

Note: this dish often served lukewarm and the lemon leaves would taste even better the next day.


  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: medium
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You need:


  • 30 young tender fresh grape leaves (double the filling and the sauce if you have big leaves), washed and stem removed


  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion
  • ½ cup rice
  • 1 cup vegetal broth (or simply the hot water you used to prepare the leaves + salt)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh mint, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill, copped
  • 2 tablespoons, chopped roasted pine nuts (or roasted pumpkin seeds)
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • 1 egg
  • 1 lemon, juice of
  • 1/2 lemon, grated peel of
  • 1 cup water (I used drained liquid form the stuffed leaves +  the blanching water for the leaves)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Additional lemon juice


  1. Bring about 1 liter of water to boil and place the leaves in hot water. Drain the leaves after 3 minutes (preserve one cup of water). Set aside and don’t discard the water.
  2. Fry the onion in the oil just until translucent, add the rice and the broth. Reduce to simmer.
  3. Add the herbs and seed, cook until the water is adsorbed for about 6-8 minutes, the rice will not be cooked through, but this just fine. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Place a small amount of this filling (about 1 teaspoon or more if the leaves are big) on the backside of the leaf near the stem and then close it. For this step, I first fold the left and right side of the leaf toward the center and I roll it up starting from the side of the stem (like the spring rolls).
  5. Place one tablespoon of olive oil on the bottom of you pot, and then place the stuffed leaves one by one, near each other, opening side down so that they don’t move. If you have more leaves you some leaves to cover the bottom of the pot or (even better) a few thin sliced potatoes (addition to your meal)!
  6. Try to make two layers of the leaves in the pot (size depends on the leaves and the pot!)
  7. Grate le lemon zest, set aside; juice the lemon and set this aside as well.
  8. Place parts of the peel or additional lemon slices over the stuffed leaves, cover with the water (add to the water previously salt to taste), add about 1 third of the lemon juice as well.
  9. Cover with a small plate the stuffed leaves, so that they don’t move while cooking. Cover with the lid and simmer for about 40 minutes (adding some more water if needed). Drain out the liquid and use it for the sauce.
  10. If you have rice leftovers, cook them in a small saucepot with water as a risotto until done.
  11. For the egg-lemon sauce blend together the egg, the lemon juice the lemon zest, the drained liquid from the stuffed leaves, the cornstarch and the olive oil.
  12. Very slowly heat the sauce in a small saucepot until it thickens (do not let it boil but add more water if needed). Adjust salt and pepper. If you need add more lemon juice to taste.
  13. Serve the stuffed leaves with this sauce.


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Biscotti rustici al limone – Italian rustic cookies with lemon

These quick and simply flavorful cookies are the perfect snack for you while you are studying or in the office as energy source when needed. If for breakfast, on the way to work or for a short break (school or work) they are always very welcome.

Biscotti rustici al limone – Italian rustic cookies with lemon

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

You need 

  • 1000 g flour (you may also use whole-wheat flour)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla powder
  • 400 g sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 eggs
  • 250 g margarine, butter or oil
  • 1 lemon, grated zest only
  • 120 ml Marsala wine (or other sweet dessert wine), quantity to be adjusted

Variation instead of lemon zest: orange zest, bitter almond flavor or with cacao or with cinnamon or with the addition of almonds/nuts.


  1. Sieve and combine all the dry ingredients
  2. Add all the other ingredients and work until well combined (we used the knead machine). During this step add the wine in portion until the dough comes together but it don’t stick to your hands.
  3. Make portions and roll logs of about 2-3 of diameter, make slices about 2-3 cm thick. Usually they are shaped to round balls, but we simply kept the slices as they came out.
  4. Transfer to trays with parchment foil.
  5. Bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for about 10-13 minutes until borders turn light brown.
  6. Let cool down and dry on a grid.
  7. Store in a fresh place in air tight containers.

Lemon and Lime Gugelhopf

Gugelhopf or Kugelhupf is a very popular kind of Bunt-Cake Austrian very appreciated for the afternoon break or for dessert. Sometimes this is served for Sunday breakfast as well.

I’ve seen many different kind of Gugelhopt in the south German speaking part of Europe (this includes sough Germany, German speaking part of Switzerland) and Alsace (a region in France where a German dialect is spoke combining this language with French), the spectrum is awesome, form the sweet to the savory, but all of them are really delicious and looks fabulous!

This is sweet, tangy version, aromatized with lemon and some limes (you can use only lemon if you prefer), no butter this time, but simply oil! Great result and I love the presentation!

Lemon and Lime Gugelhopf

  • Servings: 8-12
  • Difficulty: easy
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You need

Cake batter

  • 2 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 3/4 cups fine sugar
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1cup sour cream (substitute: Greek yogurt)
  • 1/2cup oil
  • 4eggs
  • 1-2tablespoon finely grated lemon zest  (reserve some only yellow part finely sliced for topping)
  • 1 1/2 limes, finely grated grated zest (reserve some thinly sliced for topping)
  • 1lime juice
  • 1/2 lemon juice (reserve 1 tablespoons for glaze)
  • Food coloring (optional)

Lemon syrup

  • 1lime juice
  • 1/2 lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons sugar

Glaze and topping

  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon sour cream (or Greek yogurt)
  • 1 cup powdered sugar (to adjust)
  • Sliced reserved lemon and lime zest.


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F.
  2. Prepare your Kugelhopf form: grease with oil and dust with flour.
  3. Combine all ingredient for the batter (except the juices and food coloring) and work with the food processor until very smooth.
  4. Add juices, and divide the dough into two parts and color one of them.
  5. Pour the two batter portions alternatively and bake at 180°C/350°F for about 45-50 minutes until done (toothpick test).
  6. Remove from the oven and place on a dish to cool down partially.
  7. In the meantime combine the ingredients for the syrup stirring until dissolved.
  8. In vert the Kugelhopf on a plate, pinch with a toothpick and brush in the syrup.
  9. Combine the juice for the topping, the yogurt and powdered sugar stirring and adding more and more powdered sugar until you get thick paste.
  10. Drizzle on the cake and top with the thin lemon/lime slices.
  11. Enjoy!


Avocado Pie


I’ve prepared this avocado pie a few time this summer, but I totally forgot about this until a friend asked me for the recipe.

The first time I prepared this I used a homemade graham crust, but the second time for a guest I needed to change the recipe and adapt it to a gluten free one.

I prepared this in a holiday apartment on Crete, and this was really perfect as not so many ingredients are needed and Crete is plenty of delicious avocados and lemons. I noticed that the avocados have a much intensive green and solid pulp that the avocado I get at home and the lemons are incredible tasty; I miss these lemons at home!

Well I simply bough almond ground, added sugar, salt, some and one egg. The result was excellent and everybody loved this pie.

This recipe can be changed for example using another crust or using limes instead of lemons.

The original recipe called for a whipped cream topping, but in summer I prefer to leave out this and we don’t miss it!

Avocado Pie

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: easy
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You need avocado-pie

Crust (Gluten Free)

  • 200 g almonds flour (about two cups)
  • 4 tablespoons sugar, to taste
  • 2 tablespoon margarine or coconut oil
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 egg


  • 1 avocado
  • 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons grated lemon zest


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F.
  2. Combine all the ingredients for the crust.
  3. Grease a 9-10 inch pie mold.
  4. Press the prepared dough for the crust into the mold and bake until the borders begins to turn brown; this takes about 10 minutes. Let cool down.
  5. Blend avocado pulp, condensed milk, lemon juice and zest until smooth.
  6. Pour the cream into the crust and refrigerate until set.


Ww 13 smart points per portion (calculated as 8 portions in total)


Meatballs in Tahini Sauce


Ground meat is a very versatile and cheap ingredient which offers you so many ways to prepare meatballs.

Perhaps meatballs are not one of the cutest dish to serve, but this preparation looks really gorgeous and it’s so good!

What makes this recipe so special is are not only the added potatoes and tomatoes, the lemony tahini sauce is super delicious and irresistible!

A great dish to be served with pita bread and to be shared with your friends!

Meatballs in Tahini Sauce

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


You needmeatballs-in-tahini-sauce-3


  • 300 g ground beef or lamb (best if mixed)
  • 1 onion
  • 1/2 red pepper, chopped or finely diced (optional)
  • 4 tablespoons parsley, chopped
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 garlic clove, pressed
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon powder
  • 1 pinch allspice powder
  • 1 pinch cardamom ground
  • 1 pinch cloves powder
  • Salt, pepper and cayenne pepper to taste

Tahini sauce and veggies

  • 200 g tomatoes, sliced
  • 200 g potatoes, peeled sliced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup of tahini
  • 1/2 lemon, juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest, grated
  • 3/4 cup water
  • Salt, pepper and ground cumin to taste
  • Sesame seed to sprinkle (optional)


  1. Fry the potatoes with some olive oils in a non-sticky skillet until they begin to brown
  2. In the meantime combine in a big bowls all the ingredients for the meatballs. Work well with your hands (or with a food processor) to combine.
  3. Shape the meatballs (diameter of about 4 cm), and arrange them in a baking dish.
  4. Arrange the tomatoes and around the meatballs and the prepared potatoes
  5. In a small bowl combine tahini, lemon juice, water, lemon juice and spices. To dissolve the tahini it’s easier if you microwave the mixture for 30-40 seconds. This will also make the sauce thicker.
  6. Pour the tahini sauce over the meatballs, tomatoes and potatoes. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
  7. Bake for around 30-45 minutes or until the meatballs and potatoes are well done and it begins to brown.

Ww 22 smart points per portion (calculated as 3 portions in total)







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Maroccan Preserved Lemon


I love to keep some preserved lemons on hand for Moroccan food; I love especially chicken and olives recipes with preserved lemons.

You can use them for other kind of meat as for example lamb and fish, but it is also great for dressing and marinades.

Here some suggestions:

  • Use for  Chicken Tagine with Olives and Preserved Lemons
  • Chopped preserved lemons in salads (skip the vinegar).
  • In my yogurt sauce (you may reduce the quantity of herbs)
  • I also replace lemons in savory recipes when I don’t have the fresh ones and I wish a quick change.
  • In a restaurant once we got some couscous with meat and topped with some fine strips of preserved lemons, looks beautiful and it’s delicious!

Maroccan Preserved Lemon

  • Servings: 2-4 jars
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Autor: Maroccan-Preserved-Lemons-24

You need:

  • 8 untreated lemons
  • 1/2 cup sea salt
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 12 coriander seeds
  • 8 black peppercorns
  • 1 cup lemon juice, about 6 lemons


  1. Rinse and dry lemons; trim tips of stem ends, starting at blossom end, cut each lemon lengthwise in quarters to within 1/2 inch of stem end, leaving all 4 pieces attached if you have big jars; if not separate the quarters.
  2. Distribute half the remaining sea salt onto the cut flesh.
  3. Distribute the remaining salt on the bottom of the jars.
  4. Pack the lemons in and add the bay leaf as well as the spices around the lemon pieces.
  5. Top with the remaining sea salt and press down the lemon pieces to release some juice.
  6. Fill the space with the lemon juice.
  7. Cover and shake gently.
  8. Store in chill and dark place (shake form time to time during the first week) for at least 6 weeks or up to 1 year.


Tender Chicken Filet with Asparagus and Lemon


I was planning to prepare something like “Kotopoulo avgolemono ” (Greek chicken in lemon-egg sauce) with asparagus, but during the way home from home, the cold weather inspired me to prepare the meal on the open fire using my paella skillet.

If you cannot prepare this on the fire you may simply prepare this in your skillet, this will work for sure as well!

As the chicken was cooking I decided to skip the egg, the sauce was so delicious that I really did not need more and my fresh bread rolls came just out of the oven.

The result was extremely delicious a perfect warming and comforting meal!

The chicken was tender, juicy, the asparagus done but not too soft and the sauce: a real dream!

Tender Chicken Filet with Asparagus and Lemon

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print



You need:

  • 400 g chicken breast cut into big pieces
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 tablespoon flour
  • 1 onion, peeled and sliced
  • 500 g green asparagus, trimmed and partially peeled
  • 4 tablespoon olive oil, or to taste
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 2 cups vegetal or chicken broth
  • 2 small lemons, juice and peel of one of them


  1. Season chicken pieces with salt and pepper and them with flour, remove excessive flour.
  2. Prepare the onion and the asparagus.
  3. Add oil to the skillet and adjust chicken pieces and onion on it.
  4. Heat and brown on both sides.
  5. Add wine, broth, lemon and peel of one lemon juice bring to simmer. After 10 minutes remove the lemon peel. (Variation: add some dill)
  6. Adjust asparagus on the chicken, the harder parts the asparagus should stay covered by the broth. Cook until asparagus is done, but not too soft. If necessary season the sauce or add little more water.
  7. Serve immediately with fresh bread or rice.


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