541 – more about Athos food

This time news from unexpected part of the world, because a Danish doctor Stig Ekkert visited the Holy Mountain in april this year, together with the Greek monk Georgius, who lives in Denmark and a photographer, Karsten Bidstrup.
Because of the news about the good health conditions of Athos-monks (less cancer), he investigated the eating habits of the monks and brought some recepies home. The results of his investigation are published next spring, together with his story about Athos and pictures (in Danish, publisher Guldendal).
A modern Athos-kitchen (?) of an unknown monastery (Photo: Scanpix)

This picture is seen in the article in the Danish newspaper Berlingske Tidende on august 15th (“Eat like a monk and prevent cancer”), together with two of the Athos recepies, which I translated for you:
The recepies are from Father Epifanios (from Mylopotamos), who kept notes of the most popular recepies of his settlement and wrote the recent published Greek book as mentionend in 531 and 534 and here. Dr. Stig Ekkert talked with Father Epifanios about his healthy way of cooking and he also got some recepies. Here are two examples:
The first meal: Mackerel baked with tomatoes (4 persons)
4 cleaned mackerels
2 big tomatoes
2 spring onions
10 cloves of garlic
4 leaves of laurel
2 dl olive oil
2 dl of water
salt, pepper
Warm the oven to 250⁰, clean the fish in the meanwhile, dry them with paper. Cover the fish with salt, fill them up with one clove of garlic and laurel and put them in a casserole. Cut the rest of the garlic and the spring onions in small pieces and spread it over the fish. Cut the tomatoes in 0,5 cm slices and put them on the fish. Poure the olive oil carefully over the fish and then the oregano, cumin and pepper. Finally you add the parsley and the water (slowly in a corner, do not flush the herbs away).
Put the meal in the middle of the oven (30-40 minutes, depends on how big the fish are). If the meat falls from the bones the meal is ready. Serve with lemon and rice. The Danish doctor drinks an Italian Frascati wine, I would recommend a Greek retsina, because the mackerel is a fat and tasty fish, that deserves a strong wine.

The second meal: Red Lentil soup
300 gr lentils
1 liter of water
1 liter vegetable broth
2 spoons of tomato paste
0,5 garlic cut in slices
1 red (hot) chilipeper
3 leaves of laurel
1 small branche rosemary
1 chopped onion
0,5 dl olive oil
2 spoons of wine vinager
2 spoons of oregano or marjoram
salt and pepper
Let the lentils soak in water (average 2/3 hours, depending on what you bought). Add all ingredients to the lentils, except for the vinegar, oil and the freshly cut herbs. Put water in the pan until it covers 3/4 cm over the lentils and let it softly cook for 30 minutes. Stir now and then and add more broth if the soup gets too thick. Remove the chili, rosemary and laurel. Add the oil and vinegar and let it boil again. Remove from the fire and add oregano/marjoram, salt and pepper. Eat with good bread (spread with olive oil and garlic?). The doctor advises to drink a cold wine. I would buy – if possible – the lovely, fruity Chromitsa white wine.

Kalí orexi and mange tak to dr. Ekkert for sharing this information. We look forward to the publication of your book, maybe translated in English ?
Wim, 18/8

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3 Responses to 541 – more about Athos food

  1. marijke says:

    Mooi die gedeeltes uit Blaeu! Je had het er laatst over en ik dacht toch ff kijken! Nou doei

  2. Josxe9 says:

    Dear Friends,
    1) I have a doubt about the number of days that a non-orthodox can stay in the Holy Mountain, 4 days? or 4 nights?

    2) Can visitors sleep in a skiiti ana?
    3) Can take a boat from Iviron to Lavra? Any one knows timetables?

    The Trip to Athos in 2007 is Fantastic!!!!! I enjoy very much each post.

  3. Herman Voogd says:

    Dear Friends,
    1) I have a doubt about the number of days that a non-orthodox can stay in the Holy Mountain, 4 days? or 4 nights?

    You get a permit for 3 nights.

    2) Can visitors sleep in a skiiti ana?

    yes, but book in advance. We had to walk another hour to Paulou because Sk. Anna was full (in May 2007).

    3) Can take a boat from Iviron to Lavra? Any one knows timetables?
    Boat is not sure, take taxi.

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