The lovely parts of autumn in Montreal include pumpkins and fall mums adorning front porches, watching children roll around in the pile of leaves their parents spent hours raking up, and the Garden of Lights exhibit at the Montreal Botanical Garden. The less lovely parts include fall colds. This seems to be a particularly popular time for getting sick, and not wanting to be left out, one of us just spent a week congested, achy, slightly feverish, and generally feeling crummy.
Summer is coming, and with it, wedding season. We love everything about weddings; the blissful couple, the beautiful dress, the personal touches which permeate the entire event. There is so much to appreciate! What we love most however are the traditions. Whether they are cultural or religious or simply familial, these traditions situate the nuptials within something larger than the day itself. How lovely!
Within our family, and Greek culture, we have our own set of traditions. Some of these, of course, revolve around food. In the Messinia region of the Peloponnese, which is where our parents and grandparents (and great-grand parents) are from, one of these sweet traditions is diples.Offering diples at weddings represents a wish that as two individuals become one couple and one family, their joys and blessings double.
Some of you have said that you love to read the stories that go along with many of our recipes, and that really makes our hearts sing; we love sharing them. What we love just as much are the stories that our parents share with us, particularly when we are having one of our Mia Kouppa cooking sessions. Many are tales we have already heard, but with every re-telling, there are more details which our parents remember to add to the story. An example of this came as we were putting the finishing touches on our melomakarona. We were licking spoons coated in delicious Greek honey as our mother watched on. She then recounted how, as a little girl, she once ate so much honey that she got horribly sick and could not stand the sight of it for several months. This was a problem, because honey was a mainstay of her diet.