(Field Trip Fridays capture interesting, fun food-related and/or fishing adventures that I like to share with you.)
My husband and I recently attended a Greek Festival run by a local Greek Orthodox church. Neither of us had been to one before, so we thought it would be a fun way to spend a sunny afternoon.
These heritage-based festivals are a wonderful way to get to know a culture and, of course, taste the food that has been part of that culture for generations. I’ve always loved Greek food – there’s a delicious simplicity to it, and you can taste the heritage in every bite. On this day, hubby and I enjoyed a few favorites, including a gyro with cool tzatziki sauce, salad with salty Feta and zingy olives, melt-in-your-mouth moussaka, and loukoumades (donuts with honey and walnuts). BTW, those sweet treats attracted tons of bees, so I had to down them pretty quickly, which is why I don’t have any pics!
All the volunteers were super-friendly and anxious to share their culinary treats, as well as, a bit about their Greek heritage and traditions.
These festivals are also a great opportunity to pick up imported items flown in from the homeland. We found lots of oregano grown on farms in Greece, specialty spices and flavorings from specific regions, and even home made/locally made items using imported ingredients. I had to get my hands on some oregano – the marketplace was permeated with its beautiful odor so it wound up in my basket. Here’s some fresh bay leaves and rosemary — I’m sure these weren’t flown in, but since they’re a big part of Greek cooking, I’m sure someone locally had some in their backyard.
After feasting on all the delicious food, listening to a band play Greek music while little kids danced in traditional costumes, and touring the Orthodox Church (gorgeous, by the way), we were ready to head home.
I highly encourage everyone to get to know (and taste) a different culture because it may just influence your own cooking!