There's something about a leg of lamb that kicks me into Greek-feast mode every year around this time. Which is how I recently found myself scanning the luscious photographs (of both food and landscapes) in "Food From Many Greek Kitchens," by Tessa Kiros, and walking away with a clear plan for dinner -- and a sense that I'd just returned from a waking-dream vacation in the Peloponnese. As for Tessa's recipes, they inspired me to make a lemony braised lamb and potatoes with sauteed romaine (two words I previously never would have imagined putting next to each other). And in keeping with the vacation part, I decided to go a little easy on myself and begin the feast with store-bought mezes (appetizers), as well as traditional Greek pastries for dessert.
To call Poseidon, a family-owned Greek bakery in New York City, a store, though, is a bit like calling the Parthenon an old temple: The Fables have run the place for nearly 90 years, and you can, on occasion, find three generations (Lili, her son Paul, and her grandchildren) working behind the counter at once. Which is the way the Greeks do things -- bringing all ages of the family together. Or, as Tessa puts it in her book, there's "an ease of hospitality through which young and old move ... as though all of life were just one long Greek dance. And grandparents, babies, and friends and relatives of every generation are sharing plates of appetizers on long tables." I bet they're serving lamb.