One of the intriguing things on Mount Athos is the healthy food the monks eat. Many books has been published about this subject, for a good recipe look here. But where do the cooks of the monasteries get their ingredients from?
In Simonos Petras it is obvious: one of the first things you do when you visit the monastery is have a look from the magnificant balconies. And when you look down you wil see this: The Kitchen Garden: vegetable transports by cable! Down below you see the large kitchen gardens, with glass houses, breeding grounds and fruit and olive trees.This is where the iron cable ends, in the middle of the vegetable garden. Whenever I visit Athos I bring some vegetable seeds from Holland and tulips from Amsterdam, and last year I wanted to present my gift to the gardener of Simonos Petras, but unfortunately he was not in his garden. But a friendly Greek young man, who helped the gardener took the gift and he promised that he would hand it over the gardener-monk. The kitchen garden: left from the setting sun is the gardeners house.The wooden stairs in the garden – photo Jitze Bakker
Kiwi’s growing in the garden.Seed beds: lettuce and other vegetables.The gardeners houseGreen beens and African marigolds.Vines in the garden of Simonos Petras. And by the way, I almost forgot to tell: this is one of the most beautiful spots on Earth. The beauty is so intense, for me it is not possible to find the right words.
Wim Voogd, 4/11/2016