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A round Dutch oven, Epirus-style, made of metal with legs to sit over a fire and a cancave lid that could be filled with burning coals—which made it possible to bake or simmer almost any dish. These days they are mostly used for slow cooking lamb or kid or even mutton (πρόβειο Γάστρας, próveio gástras) with vegetables.

The Gastra ‘oven’ at the Gastra restaurant, Ioannina

They go back to ancient times, and were used by the nomadic shepherds of Greece, notably the Sarakatsani.

Baked dishes


Text © Dana Facaros

Images by gastra, Gastra