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Cooking With Cathy 

Cathy Speronis Joins the Morning News team on the first Thursday of every month with great recipes and helpful cost-saving tips.This month’s recipes:

Cranberry Mint Spoon Sweet

Makes 3 cups A wonderful Greek tradition and symbol of hospitality is the presentation of spoon sweets to arriving guests.  Spoon sweets are made with a wide variety of seasonal fruits, nuts and even vegetables.  The name derives from the serving vessel, a teaspoon, which is the perfect size given the sweetness of this treat.  It is often accompanied by a cold glass of water.  Spoon sweets may also be used as accompaniments to meat and poultry dishes as well as desserts.

Ingredients:

1 package fresh cranberries (24 oz.)1 cup sugar1 ½ cups waterPinch of salt½ cup fresh mint leaves2 strips of orange peelFresh mint leaves to garnish In a 2 quart saucepan bring sugar, water and salt to a boil over medium-high heat.  Reduce heat, add mint leaves and simmer on low for 10 minutes.Meanwhile, rinse cranberries under cold water and discard any soft berries.  Set aside.Remove mint leaves from the simple syrup.  Add the cranberries and orange peels then bring back to a boil, reduce heat and simmer cranberries for 10 minutes until they have softened and begin to burst.Take the saucepan off of the heat and allow spoon sweet to cool completely.Serve the spoon sweet in teaspoons garnished with fresh mint leaves. 

Baked Saganaki

Makes 4 appetizers

Ingredients:

 2 pitasOlive oilKasseri Cheese, thinly sliced1 medium hot house tomato, thinly slicedKosher SaltGreek SeasoningFeta Cheese, crumbledLemon juiceExtra Virgin Olive OilPreheat oven to 350°.In an 8” oven-proof skillet heat 1 Tbsp. olive oil and cook pita on both sides until evenly browned.  Remove from heat.  Top with Kasseri cheese, slices of tomato, a light sprinkling of kosher salt, Greek Seasoning and crumbled feta.  Squeeze a little fresh lemon juice over the top and place skillet in oven.  Cook for about 10 minutes until cheese is melted.  Cut into quarters, remove to a heated plate and serve immediately. 

Cathy’s Greek Chicken

Serves 4

Ingredients:

8 chicken thighs or 4 bone-in chicken breast cut in halfKosher saltGreek Seasoning¾ cup Olive oil plus extra for rubbing chicken1 large garlic clove, pressedJuice of 1 lemon Preheat broiler.Rinse off chicken, dry thoroughly and trim off any extra fat or skin. Rub a small amount of olive oil onto the chicken pieces, season with the kosher salt and Greek seasoning to taste and place onto a rimmed baking sheet skin side up.  Place under the broiler and cook for 20 minutes until the skin is golden brown and blistering.  Remove from the oven: turn pieces over and place back under the broiler for an additional 20 minutes or until thighs register 185° (165° for breasts).While the chicken is cooking combine olive oil, garlic clove and lemon juice.  Set aside.When the chicken is cooked, remove from the baking sheet, pour off accumulated fat and immediately pour the olive oil mixture into the pan.  Using a spatula stir and loosen the caramelized bits on the bottom of the pan.  Return the chicken back to the pan, turning to coat and place back under the broiler to reheat.Serve over rice or orzo.