By Sofia, Sep 6 2019 09:27PM
Beautiful, isn't it?...and it is a pity that many who witness the beautiful sights of Skopelos harbour at dawn do so because of the early departure of the ferry to catch flights home!
Perhaps this daily multi-coloured dawn sunrise is best thought of as nature's farewell gift to our departing guests, leaving them with a final sweet scent of memories of pleasant times on our beautiful island.
Skopelos harbour at the break of dawn
Helen, herself a regular early riser
The early ferry taking guests away
By Sofia, Aug 28 2019 09:30AM
Vlita (βλήτα) and samphire (κρίταμα) are familiar summer salads on the tables of Skopelos tavernas. Among other, less known edibles on the island, is Purslane or Portulaca oleracea (γλιστρίδα, αντράκλα, τρέβλο). Available throughout our hot summer this easily-foraged, edible weed, with a sour and slightly sweet taste is rich in vitamins E, A and Omega-3 and has many beneficial properties. Popular in Crete and other parts of Greece, in Skopelos, this edible is yet to be accepted as fit for human consumption, instead of being used just as goat fodder.
Food is culture to the French, and this food loving nation may possibly soon bring change to the local lacking of knowledge. Some have gone to the trouble to bring seed from France. Sadly though, for the time being, this healthy readily-available and easily-foraged edible must remain a fodder for the goats, shared with and enjoyed by French visitors and only few of us locals.
Purslane summer salad on the table
Samphire or Kritama
By Sofia, Aug 24 2019 08:25AM
15 August is referred to also as the 'Summer Easter', and it is the busiest day of Orthodoxy in the summer months. It started long ago as a day of worship, dedicated to the Virgin, but gradually, over the years, it was transformed into a cultural summer celebration, featuring the individual traditions of each place it is held throughout Greece.
On Skopelos, amidst dancing and celebrations, a traditional τραχανά (trahana) meal is prepared and cheese pies fried. This is crushed wheat, boiled in goats milk to a consistency of porridge, which is then served to those present together with fried Skopelos cheese pies and wine. There is traditional dancing by adults and children throughout the night, lasting deep into into the early morning hours.
Photo of dancers by courtecy of Daphne of skopelosnews
15 August in front of the Panayista - and the dancing goes on
Full moon beneath the clouds
The Holy Virgin of the Cliff
By Sofia, Aug 20 2019 08:48AM
Yes, there are fields high up, sown by the wind and nurtured by the sun and rain. An abundance, of wild oregano, sage, thyme and other herbs grow there up high, for anyone who cares to find them.
High up, the wild mountain fields
Car loaded and heading for home
Drying oregano under airy shade
By Sofia, Aug 11 2019 06:46PM
In this hot mid summer, the heatwaves have driven many of us indoors, except the confirmed sun worshipers! When my friend Chrisoula asked, if, by unlikely chance, there was still oregano to be foraged in nature, I assured her that I could probably manage. It is now two months past its foraging season, but knowing the terrain helps.
An early start was essential, at 5.45 am latest, in other words at the birth of the day.........and it so happened that it was my Birthday! The Day and I celebrated together. Where else but in the cool woods of Skopelos, foraging oregano?
Here the progress of the rising sun from its slumber.
... at the Kastro parking
... high above town before entering the woods
... further along
... there! But upon return
I'm Sofia, 39 Steps' owner and host. This is an occasional blog to keep in touch with my regular guests, give a taste of Skopeliti life and share my experiences of foraging through the summer season
Sofia's 39 Steps Forage Blog