Holidays, Sunny Days, Wine and Baklava
Sunvil Supper Club
I lived in Cyprus for six years, and although I don’t miss living there, as such, I do miss the “holiday” atmosphere that prevails throughout the island during the summer; and the grilled fish eaten under starry skies in a beach side taverna……as well as tall, cool Brandy Sour cocktails, and hot, salty fried halloumi in fluffy pitta breads…….as well as creamy sheep’s milk yoghurt and giant green olives with lemon and coriander seeds…….and sticky flower water laden sweets and desserts too, of which Baklava is one such sticky dessert that I love, when made properly that is. I have eaten some HORRORS in the UK – greasy and overly sweet with tired looking filo pastry and rancid nuts…….a beautiful dessert reduced to a soggy mess with no care or love added to the ingredients or in the making of it. So, when I heard that my FIRST recipe in the Sunvil Supper Club was Baklava, I was pleased to try my hand at making this classic Cretan dessert.
The Sunvil Supper Club is a way to find and share genuine recipes from other cuisines around the world. Each month, Sunvil will create a recipe card for a much-loved and authentic dish from somewhere in the world that they feature, along with the history of the dish and recommendations of other dishes to try. The recipe card will be posted to the Sunvil blog for anyone to try – with comments and photos of your finished product encouraged. Each month, Sunvil will also select a number of bloggers to be featured in that month’s Sunvil Supper Club, these bloggers will be sent a hamper, including a recipe card, along with all the necessary ingredients to create the dish. They will then share their attempts, variations or inspiration with us. I was asked if I would like to participate for the July challenge and I was delighted to accept the task of making Baklava! Not only did they send me the ingredients for the Baklava, but they also sent me a VERY fine bottle of St Emilion wine too – thanks Sunvil Supper Club!
Sunvil is a specialist independent travel company with 40 years experience arranging holidays for guests who wish to visit the off-the-beaten track side of the Greek islands… Over the years Sunvil has developed close links with the communities to which their guests travel, and have become expert in the local culture of different regions. In turn, Sunvil has a loyal base of like-minded customers who love Greek travel and value the company’s depth of expertise……by starting the Sunvil Supper Club, Sunvil hope its customers will get inspired and involved, and in turn make the recipes we will be featuring. In addition they see this as a way of attracting a new audience to Sunvil, chances are that if you’re interested in regional Greek cuisine, you’d be interested in visiting the source, and I have to agree that the Supper Club is a great idea! In essence, Sunvil are passionately keen about their destinations – appreciation of local culture is at the heart of their holidays, and the “Sunvil Supper Club” is a way of sharing this passion through food.
Baklava. This much-loved treat is the perfect way to bring back those sun-drenched memories of holidays to the Greek Islands, and also gives us a chance to make it properly too. Dating back to Roman times the story of the humble baklava is long and esteemed. From its origins in Crete, from a dish called Gastrin, this sweet, spiced, nutty pastry dish spread across large parts of, what was once, the Ottoman Empire; from modern-day Greece over to Turkey and the middle-east. It is made up of layers of filo pastry, interspersed with finely chopped nuts, spices and a sweet syrup, or honey. Often made for weddings, or other special occasions like Christmas and Easter, this rich, sweet treat is virtually irresistible. If your mouth is watering and you are feeling inspired to try make the baklava for yourself, you can download and print your recipe card here: Sunvil Recipe Card for Baklava.
I LOVED the Sunvil Supper Club recipe, I made it EXACTLY as stated on their recipe card, and I was rewarded with a crispy, nutty and honeyed dessert that delighted my family and friends. This classic Cretan dessert would be fabulous to take in a picnic, as well as serving it a Greek inspired dinner party, preferably outside and under the stars! I am hoping I will be picked for the next month’s supper club recipe, as I LOVE trying out new and different recipes, here’s raising a glass of wine to the Sunvil Supper Club – I wonder which country it will be next! See you later, and CHEERS! Karen.