Sunday, 13 May 2012

When I'm 64 (Ημέρα της Μητέρας)

I imagine that when my offspring remember me in my later years, they will remember me for what I do for them, rather than what they do for me; at least, that's the Greek way. And if I'm still around for them to visit me, I suppose that they'll still expect to find something in the τσικάλι or the τηγάνι...

The age of 64 is the mid-point between my parents' ages when they died; one did not reach that age, whereas the other died only a few short years later. It's a reminder of my mortality. If my mother were still alive today, she'd be celebrating not just Mother's Day, but her 79th birthday too. If I'm still around then, I wonder what my kids will expect to see on the Sunday lunch table when they come to visit me on Mother's Day with a bunch of flowers in their hands...

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Even though lentils are a boring lunch staple, I think they'll really appreciate a hot bowl of this soup on a cold day, because it's very comforting and filling.

But Mother's Day is always a Sunday and the general rule in our house is that Sundays are meat days. They know I hate cooking steak (because our BBQ area is still non-existent), but everyone loves my pork and celery stew.
pork and celery

Then there are kalitsounia, which I always make in large batches, and they always get devoured as soon as they come out of the frying pan or the oven.

If they're a parent themselves by this time, my grandchildren will probably look forward to yiayia's special pearly pilafi rice made with free-range chicken that their papou raises in the village.

My young grandchildren may not be too keen on 'heavy' meat dishes (as I remember my kids weren't when they were very young), so I might defrost a few biftekia for them.

But what often remains in most Greek people's mind when they leave the family nest is the unforgettable Sunday roast, which invariably means that the whole family is seated together round the table.

It could be roast pork with orzo pasta (kritharaki)...
roast okra bamies
... or roast lamb with okra.

They will probably expect a desert too: I am not a keen cake baker, but my boiled chocolate cake has always been a show stopper...

... or maybe they'll be more traditional and ask for a sfakiani pita (now that the drachma has returned and chocolate is treated as an expensive luxury commodity).
sfakianes pites
If I haven't developed arthritis by then, I will still be able to make them.

 Happy MOTHER'S DAY to those who celebrate it;
and don't forget: it's MOTHER'S DAY every day for most mothers.

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