Tuesday, November 28, 2006

First meal in Moscow

As promised to myself, the first meal I cooked in Moscow was trahano, the Cypriot one... It was one Saturday, a couple of weeks ago. There were still boxes in the apartment, but it was the first Saturday I was at home, so I had to celebrate! Then, next Sunday a friend came to help me put books in the bookcases. Of course, I cooked lunch for the two of us.

While preparing the dough for the cheese pie, I was thrilled to realize that the flour here in Russia is IDEAL for rolling out the fyllo (the dough leaf). My dough and fylla came out perfect! As a filling, I just spread tvorok (the simple Russian white cheese that ranges from creamy to hard dry) and sprinkled paprika on it. The result was delicious! I also cooked the red trahano from Assos, Tijen's gift. It was also delicious!

Last week I was in Athens - it was a great break, I saw family and friends and enjoyed the very mild weather! My mom came down to Athens as well and we spent time with my nephew. Christos - Kalliopi's brother - also happened to be in Athens for one day and it was a pleasure to see him.

Maria - a close friend of mine - gave me two new types of trahano: one sour but containing tomato (made by her mother in law and herself) and another white and sweet. I cooked the sour one yesterday. It was exceptionally rich and very tasty... I'll try the other one at the end of the week... Well, I said before that I could live on trahano, if there was no other food in the world. And I think that this story proves it.

No other major news. The weather is very mild here, considering the time of the year and the fact that I am in Russia. This week the temperature reached +6!!! This is "warm" for Moscow wintertime...

Friday, November 10, 2006

I moved into the new apartment!

Yesterday was the first day that I slept in the new apartment. Not all of my things are unpacked yet, but today half of the rooms will be set up and livable. Over the weekend I plan to take everything out of the boxes and also put the books in their place... This will take me some time, as the books are far too many! I realize this only when I pack or unpack them! I thing that one quarter of the boxes were books! A friend of mine is coming to help me. We'll have lunch: trahano (I promised this would be the first dish to cook in the apartment) and tyropitta (cheese pie) with home made dow.... I think it is a very appropriate lunch for a cold winter sunday.

The weather is a little crazy... It is snowing in the evening and during the night, but in the morning the temperature rises, half of the snow melts - and becomes mud - and it rains. I can't say though that I have had trouble because of the weather thus far... I walk to where ever I want to go without hassle.

Last Monday a friend and I went to the performance of the Maurice Bejart ballet, in the Tchaikovsky Conservatory. It was a fantastic performance! They presented four ballet pieces, representative of Bejart's past work but also of the future of the ballet (http://www.elementmoscow.ru/articles.php?i=173000&s=02-in-depth) .
I was moved to tears by one piece, a solo performed by a male danser. But the most amazing situation was when my friend - without knowing the title of one of the ballet pieces - sensed it and related it to a personal story! The Tchaikovsky Hall was also impressive!

Next cutlural event for me: Rossini's Cinderella on Wednesday evening. The orchestra director is Theodoros Courentzis, a Greek who is called "the maestro of Siberia" because he is working with an orchestra in a Siberian city and who is thought to be one of the most promising conductors.

Time to go home and unpack more kitchenware...

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Just to say hi!

It's been some time since I've been able to access internet. I am busy arranging everything, so that I move into the apartment. I'll get the keys on Saturday and I'll move in mext week. On Sunday I need to go for shopping - this time I'll have a car and a driver with me, so I won't relive the mega adventure....

I am looking forward to settling into the apartment, getting a computer and be in regular touch with everyone. And also follow up on your ideas about activities and research which you sent me in September, just before I left Cyprus.

Although it snowed twice already - on Sunday night and today - the weather is keeping quite well. It is November but most of the days the temperature is above zero. This is mild for Moscow at this time!

I am dying to see the article on the Lezzet magazine! I am still loughing at your email title: "Famous gourmet and Kavala cuisine authority"....

Regarding Orhan Pamuk, I have ordered his book Istanbul before the announcement of the Nobel prize. I saw it at the Athens airport bookstore and want to read it. Have you read it? There is another Turkish writer about whom I read recently and meant to get his books if they are translated in Greek or English, but I don't remember his name now. I'll look for it and we'll discuss. I have also ordered an interesting book on Jewish food, with a lot of information on life of the people in different countries, a lot of pictures etc..

I won't keep talking about books and cookbooks, my time at the internet cafe expires shortly...

The famous gourmet and Kavala cuisine authority says good bye for now!