Monday, April 13, 2009

Eliopittes Xoriatikes(Olive Pies)

There are a lot of different ways to make olive pies,( eliopittes in Greek). In a previous posting, you can find the Rustic Olive Pie, which is a very well known way of baking an olive pie, this time I am posting another one of my favorite olive pies, baked in a traditional way, with whole black olives in it which gives it such an excellent taste. In the old days, Cypriot housewives used to bake this particular pie in a traditional oven, lighting pieces of wood and branches for fire.
For now, a conventional gas or electric oven will do. Enjoy!


  • 1 kg of bread flour
  • 12 g of yeast
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • half a cup of black olives with pips
  • fresh mint
  • 125 ml of olive oil
  • 375 ml of lukewarm water


Put flour in a large bowl, add yeast and water and knead very well for about 15 minutes until you have a very elastic, not too thick dough. Let it stand for about one hour. Add olive oil, knead well, then add mint, chopped onion and olives. Knead again very well, cut the dough in the size of a tennis ball and knead it in an oval shape until you use all of it (see picture). Cook for 10 minutes in 195 degrees Celsius, and then for another 15 minutes in 185 degrees Celsius, until you get a golden , brownish color.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Nigella's Dense Chocolate Loaf Cake

Nigella Lawson without doubt makes the best chocolate cakes.....My wife lives for chocolate and every time I make any of Nigella's recipes, I think our marriage is revived....
This is the first time I make the Dense chocolate Loaf cake and let me tell you this much......yummie! I found this recipe at
(Just a quick reminder....My famous Guiness Cake is a Nigella recipe too).

  • 225 gr. soft unsalted butter
  • 375 gr. dark muscovado sugar
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 100 gr. best dark chocolate, melted
  • 200 gr. plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 250 ml. boiling water


Use one 23 x 13 x 7cm loaf tin

Preheat the oven to 190C/gas mark 5.

Put in a baking sheet in case of sticky drips later, and grease and line the loaf t

in. The lining is important as this is a very damp cake: use parchment, Bake-O-Glide or loaf-tin shaped paper case.

Cream the butter and sugar, either with a wooden spoon or with an electric hand-held mixer, then add the eggs and vanilla, beating in well. Next, fold in the melted and now slightly cooled chocolate, taking care to blend well but being careful not to overbeat. You want the ingredients combined: you don’t want a light airy mass. Then gently add the flour, to which you’ve added the bicarb, alternately spoon by spoon, with the boiling water until you have a smooth fairly liquid batter. Pour into the lined loaf pan.

Bake for 30 minutes. Turn the oven down to 170 degrees C./ gas mark 3 and continue to cook for another 15 minutes. The cake will still be a bit squidgy inside, so an inserted cake tester or skewer won’t come out completely clean.

Place the loaf pan on a rack, and leave to get completely cold before turning it out. (I often leave it for a day or so: like gingerbread, it improves.) Don’t worry if it sinks in the middle: indeed, it will do so because it’s such a dense and damp cake.


This is not part of Nigella's recipe.

  • 85g chocolate coarsley chopped
  • 3Tbsp icing sugar
  • 3Tbsp (42g) unsalted butter
Melt chocolate. Remove from heat and stir in the icing sugar. Stir in the butter little by little.