Instead of threading the meat onto skewers, Grace simply cooks it (with onions) in a grill pan until it’s nicely charred, then serves it with store-bought pita and a garlicky cucumber-yogurt sauce called tzatziki.
For shrimp saganaki, Greeks sauté shrimp in a pan with tomatoes, olives and feta cheese, then serve it right out of the skillet with bread to soak up all the delicious juices. Grace stirs fresh dill into her quick version to brighten the flavor.
Avgolemono is a classic sauce of chicken broth, egg yolks and lemon juice; the addition of a bit more chicken broth, rice and shredded chicken turns it into a satisfying soup.
The moist and fragrant casserole pastitsio combines béchamel (a sauce of butter, flour and milk), pasta, ground lamb, tomato sauce, cheese, cinnamon and nutmeg. Instead of béchamel, Grace stirs a ricotta mixture into the pasta before baking it.
Spanakopita, a staple of Greek diners all over the U.S., is a spinach pie with a crackly phyllo crust. Grace makes her spanakopita filling with all the traditional ingredients—spinach, feta, nutmeg, onion—but rolls it inside a sheet of phyllo dough to make it easy to slice and serve.