(Mussels with rice)
2lbs/1kg fresh mussels
scant cup/200ml Greek extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, finely
scant cup/200 ml dry white wine
cloves garlic, minced
tomatoes, peeled and diced small
1/4 cups / 450g rice
1 tbsp flat-leaved
parsley, finely chopped
tbsp dill, fineely chopped
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Wash the mussels, scrub
them thoroughly, and discard any that are already
open. Heat the olive oil in a pan and saute the
onions. Add the mussels and a little water and bring
to a boil. Discard the mussels that do not open.
Pour in the white wine, add the tomatoes, and season
with salt and pepper. Pour in enough water so the
mussels are well covered, and simmer for about 15
minutes. Then add the rice, and cook until tender
and the stock has been absorbed (add hot water if
necessary). Arrange on a serving dish and garnish
with parsley and dill.
| Excerpts from:
"Culinaria Greece", by
Are you missing some pices and incredients for your
Reading and Writing
Greek in computer applications including the web
One of the most
common questions we receive is about the ability to read
text written in Greek (online or in emails) on your
computer. An extension of the question is how you can
effectively write Greek text that others can also read
properly. Unfortunately the method discussed below
applies only to PCs running Windows XP and some older
Windows versions (Win2k, ME, 98SE, 98, NT). For older
versions of Windows, Mac, and Linux systems, please drop
us a note and we will be more than happy to send you the
information applicable to your system.
To read Greek text with the appropriate Greek letters
and not using Latin characters (ASCII), you must install
Greek fonts. The following line is a test; if you can
read it, you already have Greek fonts. If you cannot
read it, you need those fonts.
Αυτή η γραμμή είναι
γραμμένη στα Ελληνικά
Windows XP usually contains all the necessary font
sets and you are already reading the above line, unless
your browser overrides the fonts suggested by this
webpage. In the latter case you need to select the
character set ISO-8859-7. These fonts follow the
standard ELOT-928, which is internationally known as
ISO-8859-7 and is the most compact way to write texts in
In order to be able to write in Greek, there are two
requirements: a mapping or layout of the keys of the
keyboard to the corresponding Greek characters, and a
method for switching between different types of keyboard
layouts. In Windows XP you can meet these requirements
Under "Start" select Control panel and double click
"Regional and Language Settings". Select the tab
"Language" and under "Text services and input laguages"
click on "Details".
Under "Installed services" click on "Add". Select as
"Input language" "Greek" and pick the "Keyboard layout/IME"
of your choice - the default is fine. Close the last
window by clicking "OK".
In the "Text Services and Input Languages" window,
under "Preferences" click on "Language Bar" and select
"Show the Language bar on the desktop" so you can tell
at any time which keyboard layout is selected for the
application that is active. Click "OK" to return to the
Under "Preferences" click on "Key Settings" to open
the "Advanced Key Settings" window. Under "Hot keys for
input languages" make your selections for accessing or
switching to a given keyboard layout. People who use
only two keyboard layouts usually just use one key
combination to toggle between the two languages.
Under "Change Key Sequence" you can select the
combination of CTRL + SHIFT or Left Alt + SHIFT, the
latter choice being more common, for toggling between
input languages. Close this window by clicking "OK".
Close the "Advanced Key Settings" by clicking "OK".
Close the "Text Services and Input Languages" window by
Close the "Regional and Language Options" window by
You should now be able to write Greek characters in most
Reference: Hellenic Resources Network - Guide to Greek
Watch Your Manners In Greece
Flirting and Love
- The Greek word Eros has been adopted by many
languages to express sexual love. In Christianity,
the sexual act is for procreation, but it is useful
to have some guidelines on etiquette when conducting
a sexual affair (or trying to avoid erotic
- Men wish to be the first in a woman's love life.
Women seem to be more philosophical in this case,
wishing to be the last in a man's love life.
- There are many different kinds of flirting,
ranging from light-hearted fun to determined sexual
advances. Greek summer is the ideal time for meeting
and dating; there are, however, some inviolable
moral rules no matter how laid-back and free we may
feel. For example, we should never conduct serious
flirtation with a woman who is married or already in
- A woman may not be the "second, weaker sex," but
we ought to treat her as though she is. This means
that we should always be polite, kind and courteous,
we should open the car door for her, help her put on
or take off her coat, offer her the best seat in the
restaurant - in short, we try to make her feel like
a queen. These gestures, when done naturally and not
pretentiously, are the best way to express our
- Flirting is no longer monopolized by men. After
the sexual revolution of the 70s many women take the
initiative and approach a man. However, sociologist
Christine Menie believes that "Man-hunting has its
limits: during her 20s it is fun, during her 30s it
is tiring, and during her 40s it is stressful."
- One of the most common ways to approach someone is
through a dinner invitation. If a lady goes on a
first date, but does not wish to go on a second, it
is advisable for her to insist on paying her share
- If she is uninterested in flirting any further,
she should make it clear. Procrastination and
constantly putting off a date become exhausting.
- Dates can now be arranged through the Internet or
a dating club. Some succeed and end in marriage,
others fail. We should never be scornful about such
meetings. It's not the means we use to meet somebody
but the kind of relationship that is formed that is
- When a lady or a gentleman feels annoyed by
unwanted attentions, he/she should show clearly his
or her disinterest.
- One should not lie about one's age, profession,
further education, name or marital status. If
married, one should let it be known from the start
and avoid any flirtation, no matter how much one
might feel attracted to the other person.
- Everything comes to him who waits! This applies,
of course, provided we do not overdo it. If the
person we are interested in doesn't respond to our
efforts, we should accept and give up.
- Sometimes it so happens that a lady sitting at a
neighboring table in a restaurant is looking at us.
A gentleman should never flirt with a woman who is
escorted. If, however, he is interested in her and
it is clear that she is on her own, it is acceptable
to send her a note and a business card as discreetly
as possible. If she is interested, she will
- If we are escorted by a lady and we realize that
another man is staring at her, the appropriate
reaction is to say as politely as possible "Excuse
me, this lady is with me." If, however, he persists,
we should leave and go elsewhere.
- It takes two to tango when it comes to lovemaking
- both parties must be willing. To be more precise,
they should be sober, informed, actively involved
and consenting. If not, it is called rape.
- We respect our partner by our cleanliness. We
should always wash before and after a sexual act.
- We should avoid leaving marks such as love bites
or scratches on our partner's body. It is not
necessary for the whole world to know what
passionate lovers we are, nor is it fair to force
our companion to walk around wearing a scarf (or
other such cover-up), especially in the middle of
August or during a heat wave.
- We shouldn't make any negative comments about our
companion's body or appearance.
- It is important to telephone the day after sexual
intercourse to show our continued interest. It is
customary for the man to call first, although
nowadays the opposite may also happen.
- In Greece, the sexual revolution also brought
about a balance in sexual relationships. However,
tradition hasn't been completely abolished. For
example, there are still many women who believe that
"men want sex and we give it to them," instead of
believing that it is an enjoyable mutual experience.
Hypocrisy during sexual intercourse may lead to
mistaken expectations and disappointment.
- In Ancient Athens two philosophers, Diogenes (the
cynical) and voluptuous Aristippus fell in love with
the same concubine, gorgeous looking Layda. When
Diogenes told Aristippus that living with a
concubine is shameful, the latter replied "Do you
consider it shameful to live in a house where others
have lived before you?"
When another friend assured Aristippus' that Layda
didn't love him, the wise man said: "Neither the
wine nor the fish, which I delightfully enjoy, love
me, but I still find pleasure in enjoying them."
to be continued...
Excerpt from "Watch Your Manners In Greece" by
Christos K. Zampounis
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Modern, busy, straggling
Nafpaktos is the last place you would expect to suddenly
come across a tiny medieval port, so complete it only
lacks a chain placed across its mouth every evening. The
delightful port is a prelude to the imposing castle set
high above the town in a beautiful forest of pines.
Inhabited by Locrians, the site was taken over by Athens
in 455 BC and given to displaced Messenians.
Even then it was an important supply depot for ships
bound for Italy. Fortified again in Byzantine times, the
Franks changed its name to Lepanto and used it as a
stopover to the Holy Land; the Despot of Epirus used it
when things were too hot in Epirus; and Albanian
tribesmen just used it. Finally it came to the Venetians
in 1407.Theydid the decorating, building one of the
finest fortifications in Greece, and that in spite of
the Turkish occupation after 1490.The core was the
castle or Fortezza (open daylight hours), surrounded by
walls and square and round towers; from here two walls
descend to enclose the port, joined by four transverse
walls to create five defensive zones. The walk up
through impressive gates (and past two cafes built into
the walls) is delightful and the view superb; a church
of Profitis Elias, a Byzantine bath, cisterns and mosque
still stand in the castle, Fortezza notwithstanding, the
most famous battle hereabouts was fought on sea, not on
land. In 1571, a Turkish admiral took on supplies here
before what became the Battle of Lepanto,fought to the
west, where a Western allied fleet under Emperor Charles
V's son, Don Juan of Austria, dealt such a crippling
blow to Turkish sea power that it turned the tide of
Ottoman expansion in Europe, and incidentally spared the
castle and the port for posterity. Cervantes lost an arm
in the fray and left us the best description of the
battle; other survivors told how confusion reigned at
Lepanto from one end to the next; on some ships, heads
rolled without mercy, while on others, Turks and
Christians hurled lemons and oranges at one another,
The port area is about to be pedestrianized. It is
framed by long, wide, shingle beaches; the western one,
Psani, is the most sympathetic, and the eastern,
Grymvovo, is fancier. Businesses are run by young people
with New York and Sydney accents, the first generation
of expatriates to return to Greece looking for streets
paved with gold. They may find them when the Rio-Andirio
suspension bridge (10 km west of town) makes Nafpaktos
and the unexplored mountains beyond easy to reach.
Guides and Information for your trip in the area
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