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April 12, 2019
Which was the first ever leftover meal?

In order to answer this particular question, I will have to take you many years back – and specifically – in the era when the “plakous” made its first appearance. An ancient Greek dish that was made from a thick batter and that was baked onto a baking stone. This was the first kind of pie. Since then, so many years went by… Gradually, this pie (actually, this dough) started becoming more and more well-known all over the world. Why? Because its base (that is, the dough) could enclose all sorts of ingredients (leftovers) and become a “first-class”, filling, and nutrient-rich meal! This is how everything started…

There were peoples who decided to cover yesterday’s leftovers with this dough. Others to roll them with this dough and some others to make layers of leftovers and dough, and then bake them in improvised ovens. And, like that, pie became the first leftover dish in the world! That is, a dish that was created firstly by leftover foods and ingredients or that were in the household that given moment. All of them plain, low-cost, mainly natural ingredients. The pie’s goal was, of course, to fill the large families, but also to accompany travelers since it could be easily carried and fill hikers with energy.

So, the pie made its way all over the world and as time passed, it evolved from a simple batter, a plain dough, and a dish made from yesterday’s leftovers, into a thin phyllo, a buttery airy puff pastry, even a…savory torta filled not with leftovers but with first-class ingredients, chosen one by one!

Savory Italian torta by the Greek chef Akis PetretzikisSavory Italian torta

Feta cheese pockets by the Greek chef Akis PetretzikisFeta cheese pockets

 

Opening photo: marcusnilsson.com via Pinterest

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