Pano Karatassos

Hearty, fresh, flavorful and traditional are all elements that make Greek food one of the healthiest and most delicious cuisines in the world. With an intense French training background and Greek roots, Pano Karatassos joins Atlanta Real Estate Forum radio on today’s Around Atlanta episode to share inside details on his new cookbook, Modern Greek Cooking; 100 Recipes for Meze, Entrees and Desserts.

Pano Karatassos chose a culinary path at the ripe age of 15, working in his fathers’ kitchens. However, this was not his first choice for work; tune in to hear how he really got in the family business! His father, also Pano Karatassos, is the founder and CEO of the Buckhead Life Restaurant Group which includes popular Atlanta restaurants such as Pano’s & Paul’s, 103 West, Buckhead Diner, Chops, Pricci, Atlanta Fish Market and Lobster Bar. After working in the kitchen and obtaining tons of knowledge, younger Karatassos continued his formal schooling and obtained a degree in hospitality management from Florida International University and went on to the Culinary Institute of American in Hyde Park, N.Y.

Attending one of the best culinary schools in the world led to big opportunities for Karatassos. He worked in renowned restaurants such as French Laundry, Jean-Georges, and Le Bernardin and at the hand of some of the world’s most influential chefs like Thomas Keller, Jean-Georges Vongerichten and Eric Ripert. In 2002, Karatassos opened his own Greek restaurant, Kyma, making it the twelfth restaurant within Buckhead Life Restaurant Group, and he expanded the family-owned business to cities in Florida. Today, Karatassos is internationally known for his modern take on the Greek cuisine at Kyma and the restaurant is featured in national magazine such as Food & Wine, Food Arts, Gourmet, Wine Spectator, Wine Enthusiast, Nation’s Restaurant News, Cooking Light, and In Style.

His new book, released by Rizzoli Publishing, focuses on Greek cuisine and includes many popular recipes featured at Kyma. While the book houses lots of traditional Greek recipes, the primary motivation was to document the life work Karatassos put into creating the incredible recipes featured at Kyma such as the eggplant stew. Besides recipes, there will be tips, such as for improving knife skills or techniques to simplify processes. The book looks perfect for the coffee table, but it’s real and intended for much more. “It is written in the simplest of ways,” Karatassos said. “We picked dishes and recipes you can make right in your own home.”

The cookbook is organized like a normal book with appetizers, entrees and desserts. One unique feature that makes the book stand out from the rest is that there isn’t just one recipe for a cuisine; there are multiple. The cookbook is not only meant for culinary experts but beginners as well. “All recipes are simple, but a go-to for beginners is the quinoa salad,” explained Karatassos. “You cook the quinoa and we provide plenty of recipes that help with flavors. We use easy ingredients that are the tastiest and easiest things to make at home, and it does with everything!”

There are tons of interesting cuisines available in Karatassos’ new book, but you can also try a few first-hand at Kyma. To learn more about the restaurants and the new line of tasty olive oils, visit www.buckheadrestaurants.com. To learn more inside details about the cookbook, tune into today’s podcast episode with the link above and to order a copy of Modern Greek Cooking; 100 Recipes for Meze, Entrees and Desserts, visit http://chefpano.com.

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