Recipe: Yogurt Pie with Vine Leaves

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Photo by Aglaia Kremezi


A savory yogurt custard wrapped in vine leaves. This unusual recipe was described to me by women working on a vineyard in Drama, in Greek Macedonia, and I included it in my first book The Foods of Greece.

6-8 appetizer portions

    • 1 ¼ pounds full fat yogurt, preferably sheep's milk (not thick)
    • 2/3 cup cornmeal
    • 2/3 cup finely chopped scallions
    • 2/3 cup chopped fresh dill
    • 2/3 cup chopped fresh mint
    • ½ teaspoon freshly ground white or black pepper, or to taste
    • Sea salt
    • 25-30 vine leaves, fresh or frozen (If you use canned leaves, blanch for 2-3 minutes and drain on tea-towels)
    • ¼ cup olive oil

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

In a bowl, mix the yogurt with the cornmeal. Add the scallions, herbs, pepper, and salt, and stir well.

Oil an oval 12 x 9-inch glass or clay ovenproof dish and line the bottom and sides with half the leaves. Brush with oil and pour in the yogurt mixture. Top with the rest of the leaves and brush with the remaining oil. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and bake for about 45 minutes, or until set and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

Let the pie cool for 10 to 15 minutes before cutting wedges to serve. It can also be eaten at room temperature the next day.

VARIATION: To make individual pies, oil eight 4-inch muffin tins or ramekins. In each lay 2 leaves to cover the bottom and sides and divide the mixture equally. Cover each pie with one leaf, drizzle with olive oil, cover loosely with foil and bake for about 25 minutes, or until set. Turn off the oven heat, discard the foil and let the pies in the oven another 2 minutes. Remove from the oven, invert the tins on a platter, or on individual plates and serve warm or at room temperature.

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Aglaia Kremezi writes about food in Greek, European, and American magazines, publishes books about Mediterranean cooking in the U.S. and Greece, and teaches cooking classes. More

Aglaia Kremezi has changed her life and her profession many times over. She currently writes about food in Greek, European and American magazines, publishes books about Greek and Mediterranean cooking in the US and in Greece, and teaches cooking to small groups of travelers who visit Kea. Before that she was a journalist and editor, writing about everything, except politics. She has been the editor in chief and the creator of news, women's, and life-style magazines, her last disastrous venture being a "TV guide for thinking people," a contradiction in terms, at least in her country. She studied art, graphic design, and photography at the Polytechnic of Central London. For five years she taught photography to graphic designers while freelancing as a news and fashion photographer for Athenian magazines and newspapers. Editors liked her extended captions more than the pieces the journalists submitted for the events she took pictures for, so she was encouraged to do her own stories, gradually becoming a full time journalist and editor. You can visit her website at www.keartisanal.com.


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