Follow cookbook author Aglaia Kremezi's road map to create soulful family-style dishes that celebrate the best of spring's green goodness.
Mediterranean Small Plates
"This is the traditional way people eat in Greece, lots of vegetables," says Aglaia Kremezi, chef instructor and author of seven cookbooks, including Mediterranean Vegetarian Feasts. On a recent visit to the Cooking Light Kitchen, she sautéed a panful of artichokes, emerald-green favas, and sunset-colored baby carrots. These same vegetables grow in abundance in Kremezi's home garden on the Greek island of Kea. Greece has known for ages what Americans are now beginning to understand: Produce-forward food is as exciting to cook as it is satisfying and healthy to eat. Unlike some world cuisines, Greek vegetable cooking doesn't rely on a particular technique or set of spices. The key is to use the best, most flavorful in-season produce. Kremezi advises hitting up your local farmers' market, produce co-op, or gourmet grocer for the good stuff. Casually arranged on large platters, these dishes are made for sharing at big gatherings for a meze, or small-plates, party. This is exactly how Kremezi entertains guests and students in her outdoor kitchen.