Friday, November 20, 2015

The PA Melting Pot - Part 6 - Macedonian - Part 1 - Greeks: Photos, Recipe Links and Videos




The Melting Pot:  A look at the 
evolution of food in southwestern Pa.  
Part 6 Macedonians 1 - Greeks

What is Macedonia?  Macedonia is a modern day section of Greece but it was a geographical location that included northern Greece, Bulgaria and Yugoslavia which suffered under five centuries of Turkish domination and oppression.  

This situation caused many to migrate to neighboring countries especially to the Balkans (Albania, Bosnia, Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, and Kosovo) and then to the United States and other countries.  Greece is also a Balkan country. 
(Macedonian photos below.) More under photos.

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  


Southwestern PA is home to one of the largest Greek communities in the United States, with 40,000-60,000 people identifying themselves as having Greek ancestry. Most immigration occurred between 1890 and 1960 (most during and after WWII) but there is not really an accurate number. 

Upon arrival in the US the Greeks joined the Bulgarians and formed strong bonds. They still remain very active within the community, which is apparent in the region's numerous associations.  The Greeks were known as hard workers, intelligent and they assimilated well, however, they kept their identity. 

Greek cuisine began its spread from 5th century BC onward.  Greek food left its impression on Turkish and Italian dishes.  From 1453-1830 the Turks compelled the Greeks to put Turkish names on Greek dishes.  The Italians also used Italian names on some Greek dishes.  So it is easy to say that Greek cuisine is the basis of Italian and Turkish cuisine.

GENERIC MACEDONIAN GREEK FOOD PHOTOS below (See below for RECIPE LINKS)

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

An interesting side note to explain the presence of Greek cuisine in Italy which begins with Greek migrations in the eighth century BC,  you will find an old linguistic minority known as the Griko people who live now in southern Italy regions of Calabria (Reggio Calabria) and Puglia (Salento). Studies show that the Greek presence left a significant genetic impact on the general population.

GREEK FOODS:  (Just an overview) (I have added photos to this blogpost)

SAUCES: Egg and lemon, white, tomato, olive oil and lemon, olive oil and vinegar, mayonnaise and garlic sauce.
SOUPS:  Kakavia (fish soup) introduced to Marseille, France by Greek travelers (and the French renamed it bouillabaisse!) and avgolemono soupa (fish stock with lemon and eggs). 
MAIN MEAT, POULTRY & FISH DISHES:  Beef Stefatho (beef braised with onions & herbs), Chicken Oregano (baked chicken marinated in butter, lemon & oregano), Souvlakia ((lamb shish kebab), Fish Plaki (fished baked with tomatoes, onions & seasonings) and Souzoukaia (meatballs).
PIES AND PASTA DISHES:  Tiropites (cheese pies), Spanakopita (spinach pie) and pastitsio (meat, macaroni & béchamel sauce).
RICE DISHES:  Dolmathes (grape leaves) and rice pilaf.
VEGETABLE DISHES:  Green beans with zucchini yahni (yahni is browned onions/tomatoes in olive oil), Moussaka (eggplant casserole) and Greek salad (lemon-oregano dressing served with vegetables, feta cheese and kalamata olives).
DESSERTS:  Baklava (honey-nut pastry), Diples (honey ripples), Galatoboureko (custard & honey filo dough), Kataife (nuts, shredded dough, honey), Karithopeta (walnut cakes with honey), Kourambiethes (Greek butter cookies with powdered sugar), Loukomades (honey puffs with syrup, cinnamon, walnuts) and Pasta Flora (baked short cake with apricot filling).
DRINKS:  Turkish coffee, tea, water, soft drinks, beer, Ouzo (anise flavored) , wine, Metaxa (brandy), Retsina (pine flavored) and Tsipouro (clear spicy hot liquid).

THE PA MELTING POT: Special Thanksgiving Edition 2015




The Melting Pot:  A look at the evolution of food in Southwestern Pa.  SPECIAL COLUMN – THANKSGIVING CUSTOMS

The offering of thanks at harvest time is not unique to 

America. Such observances are known to have been held by 

the ancient Egyptians and Greeks. 



GERMANY/AUSTRIA/SWITZERLAND:  

Thanksgiving in German Europe has a long tradition, but it is different from ours. The German, Austrian or Swiss Thanksgiving is usually a rural harvest time observance with church services, a parade, music, and a country fair atmosphere.  Typical Germanic dishes include Rouladen (beef rolls with gravy), Goulash (beef stew with vegetables), Geschnetzeltes (liver in a wine cream sauce), Leber und Zwiebeln (Liver and onions), Konisberger Klopse (meatballs with hollandaise sauce), sauerbraten (marinated cooked beef), Brussels sprouts, red cabbage, spatlze (noodles) and apfel strudel (apple pastry).

ITALY:
Italians living in Italy do not celebrate Thanksgiving as in Pennsylvania but the Italians that have emigrated to PA have embraced Thanksgiving.  Italians love any holiday that brings together friends, family and food. Every Italian family has their own unique traditions.  They may serve a Spinach and Prosciutto Stuffed Turkey Breast or a whole roasted turkey. The meal may also include antipasto:  Foglie di Salvia Fritte (fried sage leaves), Ricotta Funghi Ripieni (ricotta stuffed mushrooms, D'oliva Aromatizzato al Forno (baked seasoned olives) and Italian meats sausages.  A soup course could be Zuppa Alla Zucca con Pancetta (butternut squash soup with pancetta) accompanied by a side dish such as Polenta con Funghi (polenta with wild mushrooms).  Of course, Dolci (desserts) such as: Panna Cotta with Expresso Cream, Tiramisu, Crostata (pie) and Torta di castagne al cioccolato (chocolate chestnut cake) are the highlight of the meal!

POLAND:
Święto Dziękczynienia (Thanksgiving Day) is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November. While certainly not a traditional Polish-rooted holiday, it has been eagerly observed by Polonians and Americans of other ethnic backgrounds as far back as anyone can remember. There is something very universal and appealing in the notion of gathering with one’s nearest of kin, thanking God for our numerous blessings and sharing a festive holiday meal.  In some ways, that “big Thanksgiving dinner” is closer in spirit to the Polish Wigilia than any other American gathering. The menu is structured: Indyczka (roast turkey), Słodkie Ziemniaki (sweet potatoes), Sos Zuawinowo (cranberry-currant sauce), Dynię Pie (pumpkin pie), etc. In addition to the turkey, some Polish-American families serve Bigos (meat and cabbage stew), Kiełbasa, Pierogi, Gołąbki (cabbage rolls) and other favorites. Besides the pumpkin pie, Szarlotka (apple cake), Babka (sweet yeast cake), Placek (sweet yeast-raised cake with a crumb topping) or Sernik (cheesecake) may also turn up on the holiday table.

GREECE:

Every autumn, the ancient Greeks enjoyed a three-day festival to honor Demeter, the goddess of corn and grains and they still do. A Greek-inspired Thanksgiving menu might include the following:  Kolokythosoupa Me Meli, Moscocarido kai Strangisto Yiaourti (acorn and butternut squash soup with honey, nutmeg and yogurt), Psiti Galopoula Gemisti me Kima, Stafides, Koukounari kai Kastana, Glasarismeno me Rodi, Ouzo, kai Portokali (roasted turkey breast stuffed with classic Greek chestnut-pine-nut-raisin-ground meat, glazed with pomegranate, ouzo, and orange), Glykopatates sto tigani, opos tis kanoun stin Kerkira, me meli (Corfu style fried sweet potatoes drizzled with Greek honey) and ”Mouzo” (chocolate mousse spiked with ouzo).


Christine Willard, a native of western Pennsylvania, researches and blogs about the food unique to Western Pennsylvania. She currently resides in North Carolina. 



Germany Austria Switzerland

   

  

  

  

  


                                          Italy

  

  

  

  

  



POLAND

  

  

  

  

  



GREECE

  

  

  

  

  



AROUND THE WORLD


GERMANY, AUSTRIA AND SWITZERLAND
(I have combined the three countries recipe links under Germany)

 





GERMAN FOODS

GERMAN-WAY

BAVARIAN KITCHEN

ALLRECIPES

VIDEO OF RECIPE ABOVE

ITALY



ITALIAN FOOD FOREVER

FOOD AND WINE

BETTER HOMES AND GARDENS

MANGIABENEPASTA

POLAND



EAST EUROPEAN FOOD

POLISH PLATE

PWWA

FOOD NETWORK ON POLISH RECIPES

GREECE



ABOUT THANKSGIVING IN GREECE

12 THANKSGIVING RECIPES

ALL RECIPES TURKEY RECIPE

GRECIAN DELIGHT