Coins of Greece
In ancient Greece, the making of coins was considered to be a highly skilled art. In the 600’s B.C. each community make its own coins.
Colorful embroidery of fabrics is a favorite handicraft of Greece. Although Greece imports some of its clothing today, many beautifully decorated pieces are found throughout the market place and are representative of domestic regional designs.
Traveling puppet theaters are popular in Greece, a popular detective puppet, originally from turkey, is cally Karagiosi. Karagiosi wears many disguises a woman, soldier, cook—but the audience always recognizes him because of his large nose and hunched back. Hashivat, his friend, helps him to solve all crimes
KOMBOLOI (Worry Beads)
A traditional Greek art piece is Greek worry beads. If a Greek person is concerned over a problem, he takes out his worry beads and soothes himself. He simply holds the beads behind his back and counts them two by two.
MASK FOR A GREEK PLAY
Early Greek wore animal masks to workship their goddess of agriculture (Demeter, and their god of grapes Dionysius). This ritual use of masks later developed into a primary theatrical use of masks. One man could then play several roles in one Greek play simply by changing masks. Greek masks were constructed of painted canvas. Sometimes a small megaphone was installed in the mouthpiece of the mask so that the actor’s voice could be heard by large audiences. Special masks were make to be worn only by villains or only by the hero.
Baklava: Greeks rarely eat dessert after dinner. They prefer their sweets, pastries and rich desserts during the early evening (about 5:00 p.m.). Many Greek desserts are soaked overnight in syrup or honey. Baklava is the best-known example of this type of Greek dessert. It is Make from Filo which is a paperthin pastry dough make with salt, flour, water and skill. Filo is available in Greek markets.
DRACHMA FRIED POTATOES
Most meals ordered in Greece come with these potatoes, cut into round shapes like the Greek silver coin, the drachma.
EGG AND LEMON SAUCE (SALTA AVGOLEMONO)
The Greeks use a lot of lemon and olive oil in their cooking. Often a complete meal will be fresh vegetables, quickly cooked and served with lemon sauce. A typical sauce used to enhance vegetables is make from the water the vegetables were cooking in, enriched with olive oil thickend with egg yolks and spiced with lemon.
It is often difficult to determine if a particular dish (recipe) is of Greek, Turish, or Armenian origin because the borders of these countries have changed many times and the dishes are very similar. The Turks are thought to have brought Halvah to Greek in the 1300’s. Halvah is used extensively in Jewish households in the United States.
INGREDIENTS: Olive oil, Semolina or white cornmeal, sugar, milk and water.
1. In a heavy saucepan, heat the oil over moderate heat until a light haze forms above it.
2. Slowly pour in the semolina a tin stream, stirring constantly
3. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes, or until all the oil has been absorbed and the meal turns a light golden color, stirring occasionally.
4. Add the sugar, stirring constantly.
5. Gradually stir in the milk and water mixture.
6. Continue cooking about 10 minutes longer, stirring constantly until the mixture is thick enough to hold its shape almost solidly in the spoon.
7. Pour the halvah into a small (3”x 5”) ungreased baking dish, spread it and smooth the top with the back of a spoon.
8. Cool until firm and then cut into 1” squares.