In Greece, there is a nice tradition of baking the “vasilopita”, a special cake for the New Year, to start things off right! When cutting the cake into slices on New Year’s Day, Greeks will name each slice as they cut it, after everyone in the family and friends. Usually, also a coin is hidden in the bottom of the cake. Whoever is lucky enough to get the coin in their slice is considered especially blessed in the coming year! So maybe a nice Greek tradition to also try it with your family and friends back home?
Whether you are living in Greece or just visiting, you will quickly notice that food has an important role in Greek society. Greeks consider a meal as quality time with friends and family. It is their way to socialize, to discuss various topics and concerns, to make fun and to offer hospitality.
Taramasalata or taramosalata is a Greek appetizer/dip made from tarama, the salted roe (fish eggs) of cod or grey mullet mixed with olive oil, lemon juice, and a base of bread or potatoes.
Would you like to cook a delicious Greek dish, which is also a great alternative for a Christmas table?
Pork with celery and lemon sauce! (vegetarians can replace the pork with mushrooms )
Did you ever experience Greek Carnivale and Tsiknopempti in Greece? Usually the month of February is the carnivale month! Also in Greece, the carnival season lasts for 3 weeks during which period Greeks really enjoy themselves, organize many parties and eat a lot of meat!
It’s been over two years since I first visited Kythira. I got to know the olive oil of this beautiful Greek island through a friend in Holland. The moment I tasted it, I wanted more. While I have been to Greece over the last 20 years, I had never visited Kythira. It was early October when I checked the island out on the internet. To my surprise, I read that it was possible to go to Kythira and pick olives right then. Albert and Anita, (also former Omilo-students and the Dutch owners of Fos ke Choros guesthouse**), apparently organized olive picking holidays. I found the idea of a holiday that blended work and pleasure immediately appealing.
On the first day of the New Year, in many Greek homes, the new year is welcomed by opening a pomegranate for good luck.
It is also common to receive a metal pomegranate ( ‚ρόδι‘) with a red ribbon, as a gift, to bring good luck ( ‘γούρι“) for the new year.