Guest Author - Clare Stubbs
Some of you may already be familiar with this well known Greek liqueur, especially as Ouzo is widely referred to as Greece's national drink.
With its strong aniseed flavour, Ouzo may not be for everyone because it very strong - roughly 38% to 40% proof but it is tasty and a great refreshment before, during or after a meal. This liqueur is frequently used as an aperitif but what you may not know is that some people choose to incorporate it into certain recipes.
Drinking in Greece
If you ever pay a visit to a Greek taverna then you will soon come to realise that going out for a few drinks with friends and family may be a social event but some people do this on a regular, if not a daily basis.
Most meals are usually served with some form of alcoholic drink but water and a range of soft drinks are available as an alternative.
Best Way of Serving Ouzo
Everyone may have their own preferences when it comes to serving Ouzo but the most common way of doing this is pouring it neat into shot glasses. You could add a small amount of water to the liqueur and include a bit of ice if you want.
It is not essential to serve Ouzo in a shot glass; you can simply use a tall glass or tumbler instead.
Ouzo and Greek Cookery
If you are going out for a meal or are looking to re-create a truly Greek experience at home then you might be wondering what types of food will work well with some Ouzo on the table.
There are a number of dishes which are ideal and these could include any of the following:
• Fresh fish
• Various meats – including chicken and lamb
With the unique aniseed flavour you will find that Ouzo accompanies these dishes well and makes it a great way of finishing a lovely meal.
Using Ouzo in Recipes
If you are looking at ways of introducing this liqueur to your own cooking then there are numerous recipes that take into account the use of Ouzo. As mentioned above, these range from different types of fish or using it in pasta sauces.
As a drink, it is wonderful and using it in your cooking from time to time is certainly going to give your meals a little kick. Try this out and see what you think.