The premise was this, embarking on a food adventure from Venice to Istanbul via Croatia, Albania, Greece and ending in Turkey. It was an adventure in the footsteps of the spice routes, following the spread and exchange of recipes and ingredients across the region. The whole series was sun soaked and vibrant, and made me want a kitchen overlooking the Aegean, very, very much indeed!
I loved the kind of food featured and that the recipe book is packed with, it is proper rustic and hearty food. Meats cooked in the oven until they are falling off the bone. Everything with garlic, lemon juice and liberal use of olive oil. Fresh tomatoes and the kind of vegetables that will even have you forgoing the meat.
I love eating that way which is why I love the route that Rick took in the series. It is why Greece is my favourite place to have a meal. Last time we were there, in lovely Crete, the restaurant owner pulled a courgette right off the plant next to us to whip up some fritters. Hearty and fresh food made with love, you just can't get better than that. I love how the series and cookbook feel infused with that, of the goodness of just sitting down with a great glass of wine and big bowl of something delicious.
|Get the recipe here|
I would really recommend the book, it is beautiful and inspiring, but at the moment (likely for a limited time) there are a few of the recipes online too. This recipe from Turkey of Oven Roasted Chicken with sumac, pomegranate molasses, chilli and sesame seeds is exactly what you can expect from the book. I also love the Greek chicken with orzo in the cookbook which Rick cooks on the show, do check in out if you get the chance. Orzo, tiny rice shaped pasta, really is a bit of a revelation as a new addition to our house. We love it.
So there we go, foodie inspiration in abundance. I do hope you enjoy!