Posts tagged “Taki’s Mad Greek”

Friday, 30 January 2009

Good Greek Cooking (or How To Fake It)

I’ve been kinda craving Greek food for a while now, and I live much too far away from Taki’ s Mad Greek to make casual trips there for some good Greek cooking.  So last night I decided to cook my own Greek food, or at least fake it good enough. 

Y’know how to get stuff to taste Greek, right?  You need basically three ingredients: 

  1. Olive oil (xtra virgin = best)
  2. Lemon
  3. Fresh Mediterranean Oregano 

So here’s what I did:


  • 3 chicken breasts
  • a bunch of little white or gold potatoes
  • lemons
  • fresh Mediterranean oregano
  • fresh rosemary FROM MY BACKYARD
  • ¼ to ½ red onion
  • ½ of a big cucumber
  • bell pepper (any color)
  • spinach or romaine lettuce
  • cherry or grape tomatoes
  • Feta cheese
  • tahini in a jar
  • cayenne pepper
  • garlic cloves
  • olive oil 
  • soy sauce
  • salt & pepper

Take a bunch of little white or gold potatoes, cut them in half so there are enough to line the bottom of a corningware dish. Liberally apply olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and finely-chopped fresh oregano, and toss it all together so it’s all evenly distributed and all the potatoes are coated.  Take some garlic cloves, smash ’em up and distribute them amongst the potatoes.  Put the potatoes in a 400-degree oven and cook ’em until they’re done (about 30-40 minutes probably).  

While those potatoes are cooking, dice up your cucumber, red onion, and bell pepper.  Slice your tomatoes in half.  Tear up your spinach or lettuce.  Toss it all together with some crumbled feta cheese.  

Scoop a big spoonful of tahini into a food processor and squeeze a bunch of lemon into it.  Pour in a gloop of olive oil. Add a dash or two of soy sauce and as much pepper as you want.  Smash up some garlic and toss it in, and add just a pinch of cayenne pepper.  Whirr it all up until it’s a nice, smooth consistency like salad dressing, which is exactly what it is.  You can adjust the thickness by adding more tahini (to thicken it up) or lemon juice or olive oil (to thin it down).  

When the potatoes are about 10 minutes from being done, take some chicken breasts and liberally apply olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, finely-chopped fresh rosemary, and finely-chopped fresh oregano, and toss it all together so it’s all evenly distributed and all the chicken is coated.  Heat a pan on med/high and sear the chicken in it until it starts to turn golden on the outside and is cooked all the way through, about 4-5 minutes per side depending on how thick your chicken is.  Squeeze more lemon juice all over those suckers during their last minute of cooking.  Squeeze lemon juice all over the potatoes as well and remove them from the oven.  

Plate the chicken and the potatoes and sprinkle some leftover fresh oregano over them.  Toss the salad with only enough dressing to lightly coat it.  The dressing also tastes excellent on the chicken and the potaotes.  Partake and enjoy.

I must admit that I didn’t make everything; Carrie concocted the dressing.  It all tasted quite excellent accompanied with wine and Animal Crossing.

Categories: Cooking.

Saturday, 29 March 2008

Footprints Leading to Good Food

Yesterday (Friday) when I got home from work this is what my front yard looked like:

Yes, it looked like some kinda crappy inspirational footprints poster. It snowed basically from the time I got to work until the time I got home. This was continuing the last two days of snowstuffs. This freakishly weird winter weather at the end of March came as quite a surprise to my small cluster of tulips! Look at them:

They’re so surprised! They’re all like, “What the!?” They totally thought it was spring. Whoops!

For lunch I had leftover chicken soup that Neighbor Gary had made the night before whilst I was in Seattle. Have I mentioned that Gary is staying on our couch for his Spring Break? No? Well, now I have, suckers!

Then for dinner I pulled out all the stops and made a full-on gourmet meal. It looked soooo tasty that I had to take a picture of it. Here is that picture, in all its splendiferous glory:

From the top of the plate going clockwise we have:

  • Greek-style potatoes (leftover from Taki’s Mad Greek).
  • Carrots sauteéd in butter and seasoned with pepper. Then at the very end of the cooking process I poured in a couple of dashes of soy sauce and let it get all caramelized on the carrots.
  • Pan-seared, salt-and-pepper steak smothered in sauteéd & caramelized onions.

Whoo-eee! Them’s good times! It tasted oh-so-very good.

Categories: Cooking, Life, Pictures, Weather.

Friday, 28 March 2008

Hard To Drive a Bus in the Snow

Yesterday (Thursday) we woke up to snow on the ground. This was no big surprise considering that it was snowing Wednesday evening. It was kind of a surprise that it was snowing at all this close to April, though. This never happens ’round these parts. I got Carrie off to work nonetheless, and from there she left for Portland for the weekend (boo).

After work I came home, had a sammitch, fed Suki, took care of a couple of sundries around the house, then I headed up to Seattle. It started to snow again while I was on my way up there!

I hung out with Sandy a bit and then we went and got Mathias and proceeded to have dinner at Taki’s Mad Greek. This has got to be one of my favorite Greek restaurants evar. Especially the Oven Baked Feta appetizer. And their pork is cooked just right: not too much, but not too little. And everything just tastes really, really tasty.

I also took a photo of the decorations in the men’s room:

On the left there we have a completely nude Poseidon, but on the right we have Theseus covering his privates with a leaf! I wonder why. Does he not measure up to Poseidon? I just thought it was funny.

After dinner we parked near their apartment and then walked through the bitter cold (though it wasn’t snowing at that time) to Neumos, where we met up with Jason and his wife Jennifer, as well as Geoff and Lisa!

Why were we there? Why, to see Busdriver, of course! Look:

The man moves as fast as he raps; it’s difficult to get a good picture of him. Just look at the blur lines on his left hand in those pictures!

When we got to Neumos we were basically the only people there. Everybody else was in the attached bar. When Busdriver took the stage we were still practically the only people there, but Busdriver plunged ahead anyway. A handful of other people trickled in after he started (30 to 40). Last time I saw him the place was packed so we all thought it was weird, until we figured out that this was a 21-up show, and he usually plays to all-ages at Neumos. I guess only the kids like the Busdriver.

Anyhoo, it was a great set, and he did that cover of Man, It’s So Loud in Here by They Might Be Giants that I really like. He played for just under an hour. We all met him over at his merch table, where Sandy bought the last copy of his rarities CD. He told me he’d go to his car and see if he could find another, but I wasn’t able to catch him again before we left. I talked to him a bit about that TMBG song he does, and he said it was pretty old and he was thinking of retiring it. He’s very shy and awkward off the stage. Hopefully he’ll have another copy next time he comes into town.

Sandy kinda creeped him out by showing him a picture of the Busdriver Bot magnet that she made.

An hour after he left the stage the “main attraction,” the Gray Boy All-Stars took the stage, and suddenly the theater was swarmed with frat boys, bros, and similar early-to-mid 30s types (and the kind of women who hang out with them). They were a jazzy kind of quintet, with drums, bass, guitar, sax, and keyboards. They were all very skilled musicians, but it was just not what we were in the mood for, and also didn’t really sound like what they offer on their MySpace page. They sounded like they were straight out of 1985. Seriously! They even looked it.

At one point Sandy turned to me and said something to the effect that she felt like they were a band that the Huxtables would go and watch on the Cosby show. Mathias summed it up best by saying they were “Sportscoat and Bluejeans” jazz. They didn’t go with Busdriver at all, so it wasn’t a big surprise that none of their fans came out to see Busdriver go crazy.

We left after four or so songs. Jason gave us a ride back to S&M’s apartment, and from there I drove on home.

You can read Mathias’s “version” of events over at his website. He’s got some really crazy pictures up, too.

Categories: Life, Links, Music, Pictures, Restaurants.