On a Greek Culinary Journey

Find out how Greek food became an essential plot element in Joanne Guidoccio’s new book, Too Many Women in the Room. Thanks Joanne for sharing your post today on BookSmartTV.com.

by Joanne Guidoccio

Gilda Greco, protagonist of Too Many Women in the Room, and I have a special fondness for Greek cuisine. We appreciate the simple and elegant flavors of foods and beverages that can be traced back to Ancient Greece.

Here are ten interesting milestones from Greek culinary history:

  1. Feta cheese is said to be about 6,000 years old, making it one of the world’s oldest cheeses.
  2. In Greece, cheesecakes were considered excellent sources of energy and served to athletes during the first Olympic Games in 776 B.C. Greek brides and grooms celebrated their nuptials with cheesecake.
  3. The first “cookbook” was written by Greek poet and gourmand, Archestratos, in 330 B.C. His humorous didactic poem Hedypatheia (Life of Luxury), written in hexameters but known only from quotations, advises the reader where to find the best food in the Mediterranean world.
  4. In the Middle Ages, monastic brothers who prepared food in the Greek Orthodox monasteries, wore tall white hats to distinguish themselves from regular monks, who wore large black hats.
  5. Many ingredients used in modern Greek cooking—bananas, potato, spinach, tomato—were unknown until the discovery of the Americas.
  6. Dishes with names like tzatziki (from the Turkish “cacik”), hummus (from the Arabic word for chickpea) and dolmades (from the Turkish word “dolma”) also found a home in Greek cooking.
  7. The Greek Frappe (similar to an iced coffee) was invented at the Thessaloniki Trade Fair in 1957.
  8. Greece’s climate is ideal for growing olive and lemon trees, producing two important elements of Greek cooking. Spices, garlic, and herbs such as basil, mint, oregano, and thyme are added to create blends of tangy seasonings.
  9. Lamb, which is usually … Continue reading HERE


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