Greek Greens (Horta)

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Greek Greens (Horta) Recipe

I received a message from Martha from the blog Stir, Laugh, Repeat asking me about Greek 'greens'. Basically, 'greens' is a generic term covering a variety of (green) plants called horta which grow in Greece and are used in side dishes or salads. There are a large number of types of horta, depending on the season and the location. In the countryside, locals gather them from the hillsides or open fields for their own consumption and they are also available at local produce markets.

We picked some types from our garden (we have quite a wild garden!) to photograph for this post. These are horta that are available at this time of year. Later in the summer I'll photograph some other types to post here.

Horta are not only delicious, but also extremely healthy and nutritious. After cleaning them, you boil them in plenty of water for about 30 minutes - depending on how hard or soft you want them - and they are served with lemon and olive oil. The photo you see at the top is a combination of the four types of horta shown below, which were boiled together along with wild fennel - a delicious side dish for our lunch!


In Corfu, where we live, this is called Moscholahano (meaning aromatic cabbage) but in Greece generally it is called Kafkalithra. The photo on the left shows it with flowers, but it is picked before it flowers to be used in cooking. It can also be used as an aromatic herb when making pies.

In Corfu this is called Skatziki, whereas in the rest of Greece it is called Mironia. Like the Moscholahano above, this can also be used as an aromatic herb in pies.



Joanne Olivieri said...

Ah, the memories. My Mom's favorite dish was dandelion greens with lemon, oil and chopped onions and french bread. When I was younger I couldn't stand eating these. Now I love them.

Jen said...

Um, this might sound stupid but do these greens go by the same name in the US? They look familiar but I haven't heard of those names. They sound yummy.

Marg said...

They do look delicious. Wonder if it is like spinach. Looks good though. Very healthy too.
Have a great day

Chen(Picnicideas) said...

As a person who lives in the Middle East ,i always loved cooking with green herbs.
Loved learning about the Horta.
Thank you :-)

Anonymous said...

At a psarotaverna on Corfu, I was served a dish of greens that they called something like "vlithra". Do you know if those greens have another name?

symposio said...

Anonymous - The word is 'vlita'. This is a popular and delicious Greek green, which is translated in English as 'amaranth'.

Hope this helps!

Anonymous said...

Does anyone have recipe for "zigarelli" as served in Corfu?

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