Learn to Cook Real Greek Food from Real Greek Mothers on a Real Greek Island.

22-29 April 2018

Greek Home Cooking

Presenters: The Talking Table, village chefs and local women

Molyvos, Lesvos


Delectable Greek food is justifiably famous through most of the word, and it is all based on home cooking. Now you can learn some of the basics of Greek food at the very source of the international cuisine: the homes of some great home chefs, some of the local taverna chefs and your hosts at The Talking Table. In Molyvos, one of the most beautiful villages in Greece.
Greek kitchen
A corner in a Molyvos kitchen.
As part of a small group you will be staying in our magnifcent manor house in the middle of the village, from where we will visit the kitchens of local women, one or two chefs and perhaps a cheesemaker, to learn their craft hands-on.
The Talking Table manor house.
Every morning breakfast is served in the garden, then we go to a kitchen in the village to cook.
Evenings we share a long-table meal of mostly Greek food prepared and served by your hosts. Guests are encouraged to join in this preparation, putting their newly learnt skills to practice.
There will also be plenty of free time to explore and enjoy the village, its shops and culture, its tavernas and hiking trails and beaches.
Food is about life and life is about joy, even – or especially – in hard times. This is something the Greeks know all about, as we have abundantly seen in the film Zorba’s Dance. This is why eating and dancing go together, as our guests at earlier workshops have found out for themselves. So when you come here to learn Greek cooking, it will also be an experience of life and humanity and culture and joy.
Scroll down for some samples of what you may learn to cook.
Some of the dishes you will learn to cook:
The food on Lesbos has been strongly influenced, and of the better, by Turkish cooking, after 400 years of Ottoman occupation. Some even still have their Turkish names, like …
Imam baildi
Imam Baildi
 Imam Baildi. This impossible-not-to-delight dish of aubergines, onions, garlic, tomatoes and parsley is legenday. When it          was made for the (Turkish) imam, it was so delicious he fainted – and that is what the name means: the imam fainted.
Soutzoukakia (from the Turkish word soutzouk for sausage) are delectable meatballs made from beef or mutton mince in tomato sauce with spices such as cumin and cinamon. The sausage association comes from the elongated shape of the balls.
Fasolatha is a heart-warming soup of white beans, celery, carrots, onions and garlic, and generous blessings of olive oil. There are interesting secrets to the cooking of it. Legumes such as these are a large part responsible for the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet.
Dolmathes, those scrumptious mezes made of wine leaves stuffed with spiced rice or mincemeat, take some skill and patience to make but they are well worth the trouble.
Tzatziki with dill, one of its secrets.
Tzatziki, that feast of yogurt, cucumber and garlic, may be well known but if you use the correct procedure and ingredients you will have your guests asking for more, and again. This dip and condiment is indispensable to the Greek table.
And while we are doing Greek dips, we’ll do melitzanosalata, a treatment of the aubergine that must be the reason it was created. There is that which you buy in a tub in the supermarket, and then there is what the Greeks do with it, suffused with flavours and a crunchy texture which will mae you wax lyrical.
Kleftiko is that slow-cooked lamb roast that can only come from a part of the world where there is ancient knowledge of sheep, and the luxury of time and patience. What comes out of the oven, often only during Easter, is an experience of lamb that might just spoil all other lamb for you.
revithia soupa
Revithia soupa
Revithia soupa, a light and simple but comforting soup of chickpeas, onions and garlic, proves just how well the Greeks understand legumes. It is easy and cheap enough to make lots, because your guests will keep coming back for more.
Feta, and you ain’t tasted feta until you have tasted Greek feta made of sheep’s milk. There really is no other, and it is so versatile that a Greek table without it is unthinkable.
feta saganaki
Feta saganaki with an egg in the middle
And since you have made your own feta, how about baking some with tomato in a dish called feta saganaki? Saganaki is a dish you can also make with other cheeses, or shrimps.
Youvetsi, a heavenly stew of beef or lamb with tomato and spices like bay leaves and cinamon, and a very special ingredient which is kritharaki, or orzo. These are rice-sized noodles made to this day by hand when the women get together with their neighbours and sit in the street all morning, gossiping and spinning noodles.
Skordalia with baby beetroots
Skordalia. There are more Greek dips, but this one of almost pure garlic, either with potato or bread crumbs, is such a perfect companion to beetroot that once you have tasted it, the vegetable will forever be unthinkable without it.

Fees & bookings

Fees include accommodation for 7 days, transfers from the ports*, breakfast and longtable meal each day, cooking ingredients and instructors’ fees. Travel excluded.
Single: €1 530
Sharing pp: €1 330
To book or request more information, write to info@thetalkingtable.com. Also look up our Facebook page, The Talking Table, and visit our website www.thetalkingtable.com.

*Transfers only on the day preceding the workshop and on the last day of the workshop. Guests arriving or departing on other days responsible for their own transfer by bus or taxi. One transfer is a three-hour round trip.