M.: Recipies for a Greek Pesach - 15.3.01
S E D E R = H O O V A (in Ladino)
Greek Sephardic Tradition, according to Mrs. Â Anna Matathias:
The Seder plate consists of the following items:
- The Haroset
- The shank bone (from lamb)
- A brown egg
- Maror (bitter herbs) Roman lettuce
- White vinegar (for the tears of our ancestors )
- The Afikomen (we wrap it in a napkin and we place it with a safety pin
on the shoulder of the youngest member of the family and we tell him he is ready
for the journey to Eretz Yisrael).
- Haroset, The Greek-Sephardic Way: black raisins, almonds (two teaspoons),
walnuts (two teaspoons) hazel nuts (two teaspoons), chestnuts (two cooked), apples
(one or two) dates (five), figs (two), prunes (two), the peel of one orange, and
the juice of two orange and wine. My grand mother instead of cinnamon, she would
scrape a dash of real brick to recall the bricks our ancestors used in Egypt.
Place the above salad ingredients in a food processor and mix them, until there
is a smooth texture. Shape like meatballs, and when time to use them, pour the
wine and mix well.
- Huevos Haminados = Hard-boiled eggs ( Greek Sephardic Way): Oil, Salt
& pepper, Eggs, 10 Onion skins
In a large pot with water, pour the above ingredients and bring it to a boil.
Cover and simmer for 2 hours. When it's done, rinse the eggs, wipe them and place
them in their carton in the refrigerator.
- Pasteli from lamb (Greek-Sephardic way): Matza soaked wet in water, 6
eggs Pieces of lamb meat, 2 onions, scallions, fresh dill salt & black pepper
In a saucepan, saute the onions, scallions and dill with a little oil. Add the
pieces of meat and saute for a few minutes until brown. Then cover and simmer
until ready. In a rectangle pan, place the matza, as a first layer, then the meat
and then on top the second layer of matza. Beat eggs with the meat gravy and cover
the matza. Leave it out for 1 hour so the juice will be absorbed. That is what
gives the savory .Bake un covered in preheated oven for about 30 minutes, or until
- Pasteli from chicken liver (Greek-Sephardic way): Matza wet in water
or broth, 5 eggs Pieces of chicken liver, 2 onions, scallions, fresh dill salt
& black pepper
In a sauce pan with oil, saute the onions ,scallions and dill. Add the liver with
salt and pepper. Put it aside. In a rectangle pan place the wet matzas as a first
layer. Then put the liver, then on top the second layer of matza. Beat the eggs
with liver gravy and pour on top. Leave out for 1 hour to absorb the taste. Bake
uncovered in a preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until it's done.
- Pasteli from matza with ground meat (Greek Sephardic way): 5-6 matza
pieces wet from water and chicken broth (4-5 cups), 2-3 lbs. ground meat, 3-4
onions, 5-6 eggs
Take a rectangle pan and place the 3 matzot to make a layer. In the mean time,
you saute the onions with a little olive oil the ground meat with salt and pepper
to taste. When it's done you beat 2 or 3 eggs, and mix well. Then put the meat
on top of the layer of matza. Then you put another layer of matza. In the end
you beat 2 or 3 eggs, mixed with olive oil, pouring it all over the pan. Add chicken
broth, and bake with 375o heat for about ½ hour, or until it's crispy.
- Meat soup with matza: Boil a piece of lamb. Put the meat aside. In a
pot, pour the meat broth, salt and black pepper, as you bring it to a boil. Crush
matza into pieces and put them in the pot. When that's done, beat an egg with
lemon juice and pour it in the pot stirring constantly.
- Spinach balls (Greek Sephardic Way): 20 ozs. frozen spinach, or 2 lbs.
fresh spinach (well drained), 4 eggs, 4 tbsp matza meal, salt & black pepper,
2 onions and a bunch of scallions, fresh dill & parsley, 2 tbsp of oil, walnuts
In a big bowl, mix all the above ingredients. Fry the balls in a preheated frypan
- Leek balls (Greek Sephardic Way): 4-6 leek, 3 eggs, 2 tbsp of oil, 4
tbsp. of matza meal, 1 onion, salt & black pepper, fresh dill & parsley
Cut and wash the leek, then boil until tender. Mix the above ingredients in the
blender. Shape the balls and fry them in a preheated frypan with oil.
- Artichokes Hearts = Anginares ( Greek-Sephardic Way): 6 artichokes, 1
lemon, water, 1 egg, salt & black pepper, oil
In a pot with warm water, place the artichokes with the hearts facing down and
stems up. Add salt and pepper with a little lemon juice. Cover and cook until
tender. In a plate beat the egg and the juice of one lemon adding a little of
the soup and finally pour the egg into the pot stirring constantly. Use this as
a side dish, or as a soup.
- Bizelia me kookia = peas with fava beans (favas frescas): fresh peas
or frozen ( washed), fresh fava beans ( peal the skin off & clean), onions & scallions,
fresh dill, salt & black pepper, oil.
In a pot, saute Â the onions in a little oil. Pour the peas and the fava beans.
Add salt & pepper, the dill and cover with water. Cover and simmer until is done.
You may cook it with meat. If so, cook the meat first and then add the vegetables
in the same pot.
- Pesach spinach pie: Matza ( soaked in milk), 20 ozs. spinach, 8 eggs
(5 for the mix), One lb. feta cheese , 3 onions, a bunch of scallions, fresh dill
and black pepper
a pan brush oil. Place the matza in the pan. That is the 1st layer. Then pour
over the mixture of spinach, eggs, black pepper, onions, scallions, dill and feta
cheese. Then put the 2nd layer of matza. Pour over 3 eggs with oil. Bake in preheated
oven, 375o for about 1 hour, or until golden.
- Lamb chops, Greek Style: Marinate the lamb for a few hours or over night
in the refrigerator in a special sauce. The name of the bottle is MIKEE Garlic
Stir Fry & Rib Sauce Net Wt.20oz. Or instead of this sauce you can use the Greek
way: Fresh garlic, salt, pepper, lemon juice and oregano. Mix all these ingredients
with olive oil and potatoes and bake in the preheated oven 375o 400o for 1½ -2
hours, or until golden. Cover the pan. You may put baby carrots , red , yellow
or green peppers or green and yellow zucchini.
- Mocha Roll Cake for Pesach: ½ cup matza meal, 6 egg yolks, ½ cup sugar,
cream of tartar, 1 cup ground walnuts, 1 pint heavy cream (for whip cream), powdered
sugar, 2 tsp. coffee
Line cookie sheet with wax paper. In a large bowl, put ½ cup of matza meal. Beat
6 egg yolks with a ½ cup of sugar. In another bowl, beat the egg whites with cream
of tartar. Slowly pour the mix into the bowl with the egg whites, and stir. Add
walnuts. Pour the mix into the cookie sheet and bake for ½ hour until done. Remove
from oven. Put powdered sugar on a towel. Roll the baked mix while still hot.
Make whipped cream and add 2 tsp. coffee so you make it mocha. Add powdered sugar
to taste. Open towel carefully. Spread mocha all over the cake and roll the cake
again (without towel) and put it on a platter with the whipped cream. Decorate
with walnuts. When frozen, it tastes like ice-cream. This may be refrigerated.
- Boumuelos (Fried Matza Pancakes): Matza meal, ½ tsp. salt, 2 eggs, oil
to deep fry
In a bowl, put the matza meal and warm water until very soft. Add eggs and salt;
mix well. In a frypan, pour oil to 1 inch deep. Form matza mixture with tablespoon
into round shape. Drop in oil and brown on both sides. Drain on paper towel. Serve
with honey or preserves.
KALI TIHI! = GOOD LUCK! And, Moadim LeSimcha Hagim Uzmanim LeSason! e-mail:AsherJmat@aol.com
Return to INDEX
H.: The Greek Jew's Hanukkah - 20.12.00
What does a greek jew do on Hanuka - day that the jews cellebrate their victory
over "the greeks" - ie. the Hellenistic Kingdom of Antiochos Epifanes ? A good
solution: read the poem of Kavafis on Alexander Yannai. (in greek, Alexandros
Iannaios, the subject of a recent article by Prof. Ampatzopoulou of Thessaloniki
Univ. on the jew in the greek poets Palamas, Sikelianos and Kavafis).
ALEXANDER YANNAI, AND ALEXANDRA
Conscious of their success and plainly satisfied,
king Alexander Yannai
and Alexandra, his good wife and queen.
advance, preceded by the sound of bands,
amid high splendor and much pomp,
advance along the streets of their Jerusalem.
Accomplished brilliantly now stands the work
that was begun by the great Judas Maccabaeus, and
his celebrated brethren four;
the work that was unswervingly pursued
in spite of all its perils and all hindrances.
There's nothing left that is improper now.
No more subservience to the haughty kings,
the sovereigns of Antioch. Thus are
king Alexander Yannai
and Alexandra, his good wife and queen,
the peers of the Seleucids in all ways.
chaste Jews, devoted Jews--above all else.
But yet, as is demanded by the circumstance,
fully conversant with Greek speech,
and with all Greeks and with Grecized
sole rulers on
good terms--as equals, be it understood.
Indeed, accomplished brilliantly,
accomplished most remarkably, now stands
the work that was begun by
the great Judas Maccabaeus, and
his celebrated brethren four.
(Translation from the Vrionis Center site)
TÙÍ ÅÂÑÁÉÙÍ (TON EVRAION)
Zwgrafos kai poiitis , dromeys
san Endymiwn emorfos, o Ianthis Anrwniou,
apo oikogeneian filin tis synagwgis
"Oi timiwteres mou meres
pou tin aisthitiki anazitisin afinw,
pou egkataleipw ton wraion kai skliron ellinismo,
me tin kyriarhi prosilwsi
se teleia kamwmena ftharta meli.
Kai genomai aytos pou ithela
panta na menw: twn Evraiwn, twn ierwn Evraiwn, o yios."
Enthermi lian i dhlwsis tou. "Panta
na menw twn Evraiwn, twn ierwn evraiwn ..."
Omws den emeine toioutos
O idonismos k' h Tehni ths Alexandreias
afosiwmeno tous paidi ton eixan.
Return to INDEX
Sam H.: Press Release on Macedonian and
Thrace Jews - 23.8.00
Please include in Kol Hakehila that my previous messages are an over-reaction
to a clumsy translation error in the english translation of the KKL spokesman
anouncement in the changes of the King Boris III memorial ("Thrace" and "Thracian"
have been converted into "Turkey" and "Turkish"). This is the e-mail they sent
On Tue, 22 Aug 2000 YonatanT@kkl.org.il
Shalom Samuel H,
Thank you for pointing out the error which inadvertently crept in through
translation. We apologize for any insensitivity that was caused . Sincerely,
Yehonathan Tommer, KKL-JNF Information Center, Division of Communications and
I want to express my indignation on the wording used in the press release of
July the 16th in which it is implied in no less than 3 places that the approx.
4000 jews of W. Thrace who have been sent to Treblinka are TURKISH !!! W. Thrace
was and is a part of Greece and its pre-war inhabitants had NO relation to Turkey
(whose jews have been spared of the Shoah, since their country stayed out of
WWII). Turkey is mentioned in no less than 3 places in : http://www.kkl.org.il/whatsnew/english/press/1672000.htm
I think that your press release should be reworded to erase any mention of Turkey
- in the spirit of your February press release : http://www.kkl.org.il/whatsnew/english/press/822000.htm
in which you speak, correctly, of Macedonian and Thracian Jews. Yours Sincerely,
Return to INDEX
Lyn J.: Jews
of Kos - 13.8.00
I read in a guide book that only one survivor from the Jewish community of Kos
- who died about 10 years ago - returned from the death camps and he inherited
all the property belonging to the rest. Do you know if this true? Are there
any Jews at all living in Kos today? I was very impressed with your website which
is very professional. You are doing great work trying to perpetuate the memory
of these Greek edifices and what remains of their kehilot. Not many Sephardim
in England know about the communities in Greece, although we do have one synagogue
in London founded by people from Salonica and Istanbul.
Return to INDEX
H.: Isaac Kabeli's article - 4.6.00
Anybody interested on our own greco-jewish version of Kustaritsa's "Underground",
try Mr. Isaac Kabelli's article in the 1953 Yivo American Journal of Jewish Social
Science. You will see that 40 of the fighters that secured the blowing up Gorgopotamos
were jews, that the percentage of jewish losses in the war was triple the average,
a large resistance organization in pre-expulsion Salonika and many other things
- pliris kipwn kai alla fyta, according to the familiar Mpost expression. He also
speaks of a jewish british officer called Jeffrey Rakkliff (double k double f
- only double c and double u are missing) citing a very reliable source - "Thisavros"
Leave it up to you to judge whether the stuff is for laughing or crying. Most
will choose to disregard anyway. My information from Marcel Yoel is that he was
the person put by the germans in charge of the jewish community of Athens when
the other leaders fled.
Next time some of us hear some gentile fellow-greeks on how many jews they have
saved during occupation or the 18500 false ids by Evert (downgraded to 1850 by
now), ponder if we fare any better !
Return to INDEX
Samuel H.: Stephanopoulos and Weizman -
Yesterday I was invited in the dinner given by President Weizman to honour President
Stephanopoulos. Present were also Mr. Peres, Mrs. Dayan, KIS's Mr. Konstantinis,
Ms. Papazoi (setade next to Peres), the Mayor of Verroia and many others.
On the personal level, I can only register a "gafa" : I reminded Stephanopoulos
that he was my boss in "Yp. Syntonismou" some 20 years ago - but he claimed he
has never been Yfypourgos Syntonismou - just Emporiou. I remember very well seing
him in the Syntagama Sq. Building and the discussion we had.
I was seated next to some diplomats - including a portugese one who made
a point in irritating his colleagues with taking pride that he uses the term Macedonia
instead of FYROM. Not even the israeli diplomat next to him could not quench his
The speaches of both Weizman and Stefanopoulos started with refering to
the similarities between greeks and jews - the big daspora, the revived old language,
the commercial skills. They both congratulated each other on Greece's new role
and they also stressed the similarities of the two countries. They also mentioned
that Israel is Greece's biggest trading partner in the Middle East Weizman was
depply concerned with the shooting events in the territories and stressed the
need of continuing the peace process.
Stephanopoulos spoke on the role of Turkey in Cyprus. Apparently, when the greeks
and the israelis try to improve their relations, God shows that He (She?) wants
otherwise : thus, 3 days after Pagkalos came to Israel in Dec. 87, the Intifadha
started. In 1990, when Mitsotakis upgraded the level of the relations, the problem
of the "Xenonas" of the Jerusalem Patriarchate took place. And tnight, the
riots in the crossing points between the Palesto Authority and Israel - including
4 palestinians killed.
Of course, "allou ta kakarismata kai allou genoun oi kotes": the real thing
is the economic delegation that acompanies Stefanopoulos that will have meetings
with israeli industry personalities during the next days. There is also a "diapanepistimiaki
symfwnia" signed, but I have no details yet.
Return to INDEX
Andrew A.: Responce to Rau's visit to Salonika - 12.4.00
In a message dated 12.4.00 you write:
<< THESSALONIKI - The city's Jewish community has protested against
the failure of German President
Johannes Rau to lay a wreath at the Holocaust memorial, which commemorates
the country's 50,000 Jews who died in Nazi concentration camps >>
Question, who drew up Rau's itinerary? Presumably the respective presidents' offices
and foreign ministries? how did the Greeks let him get away with this yet Fisher
was roped into a pointless trip to Chios with George Papandreou? Did you also
notice that even at Kalavryta Rau did not mention the Holocaust but and even only
expressed regret and shame, not apology for Distomo etc. (View the
article on Rau's
visit at Kol haKEHILA online archive)
Return to INDEX
Samuel H.: The Elders of Zion - 22.3.00
Speaking about the Elders of Zion at barnes is a bit inappropriate for Kol
haKEHILA ! In our own country, it is sold without restrictions, it is discussed
on the Thrace list (shall I say thrash list?) and even a cretan court has declared
it valid ! Arch. Christodoulos you mention would have said about the scribes
and pharisees oi "ton kwnwpa diylizontes tin de kamhlon katapinontes" (or, in
the hitech era, oi ta angstom diylizontes kai ta parsec katapinontes).
Return to INDEX
Newsletter.: Cantor Estrugo Nachama. z”l - 7.2.00
It is with great sorry that we received the news of the passing of the Salonikan-born
Berlin reform cantor, Estrugo Nechama. He survived Auschwitz and other camps,
opted to stay in Germany, and had an impressive acareer as a cantor, opera singer,
& radio musical show host. He made numerous tapes of Jewish and Sephardic
music; as well as opera music. His son, Andreas, a journalist, is currently
president of the Berlin Jewish Community. He was a very open and friendly person,
and was always willing to cooperate with local and foreign researchers. He will
be dearly missed. Yehi Zichro Baruch.
Return to INDEX
H.: Reply to Yitzhak K. (see Kol haKEHILA online archive) - 14.12.99
I hope you take my comments in a good spirit - after all I very much appreciate
your efforts towards keeping the sepharadic culture alive and the enthusiasm you
put into them.
a. The only place that you can see that the Minor Asians (incidently, in my last
travel in Antalya I was told by a very intelligent turkish guide that the term
Anatolia is more greek than the one Minor Asia, which is Roman !) had more blood
libels than could be found in other places of the Ottoman Empire or the Balkans.
Read Kashlas' book to see one blood libel per year in Bulgaria ! The difference
is perhaps that in Minor Asia the official greek church put a lot of effort to
combat the blood libel, not always succesfully, but such a thing is documented
in the book of Zvi Ankori.
b. The expression that (you have probably picked it up in the books of the
miserable historian-for-sale Stanford Shaw, who in another book of his actually
ascribes anti-semitism in republican turkey to MOSLEM refugees who found themselves
in Turkey as a result of the population exchange !!!!) the greek who came from
Minor Asia were more anti-semitic than the the locals is totally wrong ! It is
also totally wrong to blame them for the different measures like the Sunday closing
of shops , which were taken by the greek state and NOT by the refugees. Makedonia
was spreading its anti-semitic poison far before the refugees came (read my article
and Rena Molho's).
c. Your description of the elections of Salonika and the problems caused
by the electoral system is also not mirroring the truth - in the municipal elctions
of Salonika actually the government forced some City counselors to resign in favor
of jews, who failed to be elected because the system in the city did not provide
for special places for the jews ! Notice that the jews asked for the municipal
elections changes exactly the opposite than what they asked for National elections
d. The increased emigration is not due solely to the Kampel events, but
also a. to the economic crisis b. increased activity by the Sohnut those days.
e. The non-condemantion of the perpetrators of Campell is NOT due to the
reasons you mention, but to the inadequacy of laws to deal with such situations.
It's a bit like the responsibility of those who wrote "Din Moser" and "Din Rodef"
on the late Rabin's murder ! Makedonia ceratinly used a lot of anti-Macabi and
anti-semitic retoric, but it claims it never asked anybody to burn or do any unlawfull
acts. The same for the EEE chief Kosmides, who just said in the court that the
days of the riots he was not even in Salonika - he was in Athens in business !!!
Return to INDEX
Y.: Greece was first supporter for Jewish state - Jerusalem Post - 28.10.99
A relatively `unknown event in the history of the creation of the State of
Israel might interest readers: A statement made in July 1917, in Thessatoniki
(Salonica), by the Greek then-foreign minister, Mr. Nikolaos Politis, with the
explicit approval and endorsement of then-prime minister Eleftherios Venizelos,
has not received adequate historical mention. The statement was published in
the July 1917 issue of the Greek-zionist magazine Pro-Israel. The statement; which
was recently discovered by Greek historian Gerasimos Apostolatos reads as follows:
"The idea of the establishment of a Jewish State in Palestine is met with sincere
sympathy by us (the Greek government). The blessed day on which the old aspiration
of the Jewish -Nation will become a reality will be hailed by us, and will be
a triumph of the free-spirit and the neutralization of age-old prejudices against
the Jews. The creation of a National Jewish Home in Palestine, where the national
spirit of Judaism. will be able to develop freely, will be the correction of an
evident injustice which has lasted for 20 centuries.
"If the Great .Powers will propose the settlement of the Jewish problem, Greece
will support the creation of a Hebrew Palestine. A Jewish Palestine, will be,
without question an ally of Greece, while the similarity of our interests in the
Eastern Mediterranean will render our ties unbreakable".
While the Balfour Declaration, as expressed in the well-known November 2, 1917
letter to Lord Rothchild, became famous and is considered as the major diplomatic
document recognizing the need for the creation of a "national home for the Jewish
People", it is worthwhile to recall that the Greek government's statement, made
five months earlier, was the first official endorsement of the Jewish State idea.
This becomes . particularly important in view of recent developments in the relations
of the two countries and their expected close cooperation not only in the cultural-economic
fields, but also in the area of defense.
Return to INDEX
H.: From Today's Athens News - 28.10.99
Referring to Greece's security priorities in the eastern Mediterranean, Tsochadzopoluos
said that Athens supported the Middle East peace process and promoted cooperation
with Arab countries within the framework of maximising security in the region.
The Athens talks came barely ten days after Tsochadzopoulos visited Israel at
the invitation of Prime Minister Ehud Barak for talks concerning the extensive
upgrading and expansion of a previous joint defence pact signed between the two
countries in 1994 during a visit to Israel by the then defence minister, Gerasimos
Arsenis. Details of the new Greek-Israeli defence agreement were not announced,
but the Government Council for Foreign Affairs and Defence (KYSEA) is reported
to have decided to equip the Hellenic Airforce F-16 fighters with an Israeli aerial
Return to INDEX
M.: Not the Usual Suspects? - Letter to the Odyssey magazine - May/June 1998
lt is commendable that Odyssey represents a facet of Greek society that is often
ignored by mainstream media in Greece. ("Forgotten History, Fragile Future: A
Belated Tribute to the Jews of Greece," January/February 1998.)
The writer of the story was wise enough to interview the "right people."
By this I mean he avoided the mainstream Jewish officials everyone interviews
and who always give the same skewed "politically correct" picture of the situation.
Being a Greek Jewish scholar myself, and currently living in Israel, researching
and doing a dissertation on the history of Greek synagogues, I would like to mid
some information that may he of interest to your readers.
Concerning the number of synagogues before and after World War II in Thessaloniki,
the writer mentions in his article "only two of Thessaloniki's hundreds of synagogues
were still standing [after the war]."
According to my research, the number of synagogues in Thessaloniki before the
war was 60 (33 synagogues and 27 oratories, called midrashim). An earlier research
study published by Albertos Nar in "The Synagogues of Thessaloniki-Our Song,"
gives a total of 49 (19 synagogues and 30 oratories).
Concerning the number of synagogues that survived after the war, the following
is known: Only six synagogues and one midrash have been documented as still standing.
Most of these synagogues were later demolished to make way for the new development
that sprung up in the city.
Concerning the Thessaloniki Holocaust monument and the choice of the artist: The
late professor Nandor Glid was not chosen in an "open" competition; he was selected
only after a national competition open only to Greek sculptors produced no winners.
Concerning the synagogues in Athens: Athens does not have a "sole functioning
synagogue,'' as your article states. there are two synagogues standing in Athens
today, Beit Shalom and Ianniotiki (across the street). The former opens on a daily
(or nearly daily) basis, while the latter opens on high holidays. 'There is an
additional synagogue functioning occasionally inside the Jewish Museum of Greece.
Finally, concerning the synagogues in Greece that are currently under a conservation
process: In addition to the important work carried out in Hania, there is another
synagogue that is currently being conserved and which your article does not mention-the
synagogue of Veroia.
This synagogue is the of the most important in Greece, dating from the 10th century
and standing amid a well-preserved Jewish quarter. The work is led and coordinated
by myself, and is carried out under the auspices of the local municipality in
cooperation with the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece.
The project has been financed in its first two phases by grants from the Getty
Grant Program in Santa Monica and by matching funds from the local municipality.
Return to INDEX
The bulletin board is