Thursday, October 2, 2014

Cookbook Review: It's All Greek to Me

Title: It's All Greek to Me: Transform Your Health the Mediterranean Way with My Family's Century-Old Recipes

Author: Debbie Matenopolous

Format: egalley/Hardcover, 304 pages

Pub. Date: April 29th 2014

Source: Netgalley & BenBella Books

Summary from Amazon:
Debbie Matenopoulos, the first member of her family born in America, grew up in a traditional Greek household, eating delicious, authentic Greek cooking that her family had passed down for generations.

By the time Debbie had started her television career in New York on The View, she began eating a standard American diet. But despite carefully limiting how much she ate, she found herself gaining weight and lacking energy. As Debbie’s career as an entertainment news reporter and television host on BS, MTV, E!, and other networks had her constantly on the go, she was grabbing whatever food was readily available. It was only when she returned to her traditional Greek diet that she found herself easily—and healthily—realizing her natural weight and regaining her natural energy, stamina, and physique.

Now, in It's All Greek to Me, Debbie shares 120 of her family's traditional Greek recipes and adds her own touch to make them even healthier and easier to prepare.

After tasting Debbie’s dishes, such as her mouthwatering version of Spanakopita (Spinach Feta Pie), Kalamaria Kaftera (Spicy Calamari), her family’s secret recipe for Baklava, and, of course, Arni kai Patates (Classic Roasted Leg of Lamb with Potatoes)—you’ll be amazed these delicious foods are good for you. With a foreword by Dr. Michael Ozner, one of the nation’s leading cardiologists, the recipes in It’s All Greek to Me adhere to the healthiest diet on the planet: the traditional Mediterranean Diet. Modern science is catching up to what Greeks have known for millennia: health comes from eating natural, whole-food ingredients that haven’t been processed or pumped full of hormones, antibiotics, or preservatives.

Let It’s All Greek to Me bring your friends and family together to share in the experience of a Greek meal and way of life. Opa!

A portion of all proceeds will benefit the ALS Association.


Four and a half stars.


I will be the first one to admit to you that I LOVE Greek food. I order it all the time, and I love when I get the chance to go out to eat in Greektown in Chicago. All that said, I've never made it for myself. So when I saw this book, I seized the chance to read it so that I can have it at home anytime. I definitely was not disappointed.

The first thing that stands out about this book is the photography. The pictures are not only gorgeous, but plentiful. Almost every recipe has a photograph to match, a detail that is extremely important to me. Not all of the pictures are of food- there are stunning pictures of Greece, Greek life, and its people. It made me want to book an airline ticket today.

And then of course, there are the recipes. The book is divided by course, making it easy to navigate. Each recipe has the Greek name for the dish, the phonetics so you can pronounce it, and the English translation. I thought this was a cool little touch, so that I can slip in some Greek when I can while also still knowing what I'm saying. Debbie also offers helpful little bonus tips when needed, something else that I thought was a nice addition. The recipes themselves are easy to follow, and I was happy to see that there's a whole section dedicated to vegetarian dishes too.

Almost all of the recipes that Debbie's put into this cookbook are ones that I'd love to try. However, the ones that I'm most eager to try for myself are: Taramosalata (Fish Roe Dip), Octopothi sta Karvouna (Grilled Octopus), Kotosoupa Avgolemono (Greek Chicken Soup), and Aunt Aphrodite's Sour Cherry Summer Dessert.

This is a great book for anyone looking to switch to a healthier cuisine, or who has a love/interest in Greek cooking. Vegetarians, there's dishes in here for you too. This is a book I know I'll keep using in the future. Thanks to Netgalley and BenBella Books for my copy in exchange for my honest review.


  1. This sounds amazing, and that octopus dish has me hooked already. (I will keep trying it until I like it, damn it!) I haven't had a lot of experience with Greek food other than Greek Fest and a local Greek food truck, but from what I've sampled I've fallen in love with Greek food. This is definitely a book we need in our kitchen.