Jessica Samples Mediterranean Island Food at The Kassi Club

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Restaurateur Nick Mathers was inspired to open a Greek restaurant in Los Angeles while vacationing in an unlikely place: a tiny fishing village in Uruguay.

He decided to convert one of his restaurants, Goldie's, into an elegant Mediterranean spot that offers an authentic feeling of being on a Greek Island. The result: The Kassi Club.

Mathers told Jessica that he was inspired by many of the places he's been, and that his restaurant reminds him of visiting taverns in Greece.

Jessica hung out behind the bar and in the kitchen with the bartender and chef to sample some of The Kassi Club's offerings. She also learned how to make dolmades with lamb sausage and the chef's spin on spanakopita.

For more information about The Kassi Club, visit the restaurant's website or Instagram page.

This segment aired on California Cooking With Jessica Holmes Episode 42.

The Kassi Club's Dolmades With Lamb Sausage 

Ingredients

  • 5 pounds of ground lamb
  • 10 ounces of cooked rice
  • 6 whole eggs
  • 1/2 ounce of mint, chopped
  • 1 ounce of of parsley, chopped
  • 1 1/2 ounces of garlic, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons of harissa
  • 5 tablespoons of salt
  • 2 tablespoons of fish sauce
  • 7 ounces of dates, soaked
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons of coriander, toasted
  • 2 teaspoons of black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons of fenugreek
  • Canned grape leaves
  • Yogurt to taste
  • spicy BBQ sauce to taste

Instructions

  1. To make lamb sausage mix place all ingredients except grape, leaves, yogurt and BBQ sauce in a large bowl and mix well.
  2. Wrap mix in plastic and place in cooler. Let marinate for one hour before using.
  3. Label and date.
  4. Rise canned grape leaves under water and pat dry.
  5. Lay one grape leaf, stem side on the bottom and place 1 ounce of lamb sausage mix in the center of the leaf.
  6. Fold the bottom of the leaf over and tuck in.
  7. Fold the side of the grape leaf to the center, then roll forward. The shape should look like a small cigar.
  8. Over a hot grill, the lamb sausage for 2 minutes, flip over and cook for 2 more minutes.
  9. Cut in half and serve with yogurt and BBQ sauce.

The Kassi Club's Spanakopita

Ingredients

  • 1 ounce of Spanakopita mix 
  • Shredded kasseri cheese
  • 1 flour tortilla
  • 1 ounce of tzatziki
  • 1 ounce of tomato salsa
  • 600 grams of spinach, blanched
  • 20 grams of garlic paste
  • 60 grams of parsley, chopped
  • 6 grams of oregano, fresh
  • 325 grams of crème fraîche
  • 18 grams of salt

Instructions

  1.  Blanch spinach in salted water. Shock in ice water. Squeeze excess water from spinach before weighing.
  2. Chop spinach and parsley, this helps to blend easier.
  3.  Mix all ingredients. Blend using a food processor.
  4. Place 1 oz of the spanikopita mix in the tortilla and spread evenly. Sprinkle the cheese evenly. Fold in half.
  5. On a flat top or large nonstick pan, place heat to medium. Add a few tablespoons vegetable oil and sear the spanikopita until golden brown, about 1 ½ minutes. Flip and cook other side.
  6. Cut into 6 triangle pieces.
  7.  Serve with tzatziki and tomato salsa.
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