IT’S ALWAYS NICE to be asked to the party. This is true whether the party in question is a real, in-person evening of good food and knee-slapping music, or whether it’s a virtual gathering where you’re asked to supply your own nibbles. Some weeks ago, I was invited to such an online “party”—and, in a sense, asked to be the guest of honor, even if just for a week. My hosts? The Baltimore Greeks.
Today, the Baltimore Greeks’ website goes live with an eye-catching redesign, and their Featured Recipe of the Week is my very own Leek, Lemon, and Feta Quiche, which I created for my father’s birthday back in January, and which will also be forthcoming soon in Food52’s first cookbook, curated by Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs.
Who are the Baltimore Greeks? Well, it’s obvious, sort of. They are based in Baltimore, yes, and they’re definitely Greeks (born in Greece or part of a Greek family). But the creators of The Baltimore Greeks are setting their sights on something more than local color—they are aiming to reunite Greeks around the globe and also to become a source of information and community for anyone who enjoys Greek culture and cuisine.
The new site includes departments dedicated to events, news, food, shopping (currently under construction), music, articles/blogging, and photos. The food page features a recipe each week, plus an archive of appetizers, desserts, main courses, and salads. I was really happy to see that one of my favorite online Greeks, Peter Minaki of Kalofagas, has contributed a recipe for Grilled Lamb Chops with Pan-Roasted Potatoes and a Greek-style corn salad. I know I’m in good company here. In addition to recipes, there’s also a restaurant section for those times when you’re craving pastitsio or baklava but are too tired to make it at home.
The Baltimore Greeks are clearly hoping to foster community interaction, to provide networking opportunities, and to support Greek-owned businesses. Though it’s not required to view the site, they offer membership with a free registration and plan to roll out an e-newsletter, alerts to Greek events, and coupons to favorite Greek places and products. I sense that more will come in time.
For now, I’m just thrilled to belong, to be part of this new online parea (group of friends). It really is like being asked out, and to the one who asked, Joanna, I say sas efxaristo para poli. Thank you very much.
A final note: Check out the Top 10 Songs in Greece, which include the music videos. Updated regularly, this is a great way to stay connected to popular culture. The page takes a short while to load, but it’s worth the wait.