Freedom Food

March 25th marks the start in 1821 of the Greek revolution against Ottoman rule. When you consider that the Ottomans had invaded and ruled Greece for 400 years, it's easy to understand why this is such an important holiday for Greeks all over the world. Additionally, the 25th of March marks a holy day in the Greek church--the Annunciation of the Virgin Mary. So, while both of these remarkable events fall during Lent, the church allows a pause in fasting. Those who follow the fast, are allowed to eat fish, so the traditional meal to celebrate with is fried cod and skorthalia. For many of us, beets and beet greens are added.
Here is my recipe for the super-garlicky skorthalia. The beet greens are boiled in salted water, drained and dressed with lemon juice and olive oil. The beets can also be boiled or roasted in the oven and served with the greens. Along with this lovely combination, we fry cod. Traditionally, dried cod is used. It is rehydrated and fried. I use fresh cod loins. Salt and pepper, dredge in flour and fry. Done! The most complicated part of this meal is the skorthalia, but I've simplified the traditional recipe, so you can feast authentically and Greek it up!


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