Greece: Greek Pottery, Feta Cheese, and Opa!
Do you want to know more about Greece? Are you a lover of travel, geography teacher, homeschooling or involved parent, student, or life-long learner? In an effort to make world geography more meaningful and memorable, I've compiled all you will need to locate Greece on a map, cook a Greek meal, watch YouTube clips on Greece, color the flag, create a Greek craft, read a great book about Greece, and more! This is part of a series of lessons I did with my family while studying various countries from around the world. You can see them all at Around the World in 26 Letters .
Where is Greece?
Locate Greece on this map of Europe. Use this map of Greece to label the capitol, Athens. Mark other relevant features (rivers, mountains, famous locations, etc.) if desired. If you'd like to spend a bit more time researching the country, you can add the language, currency, type of government, religion, and/or famous landmarks. Write them on the back of the map. You can easily find all this information at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greece.
Fun Facts About Greece
The popular yo-yo toy, one of the oldest known toys in the world, originated in the days of ancient Greece, around 3,000 years ago.
There are about 3000 islands in Greece. However, only a few hundred of them are inhabited.
Traditionally, Greeks have been known to celebrate their name days, rather than their birth dates.
Ancient Greek civilization comprised of Southern Italy, the coastal areas of Turkey and the Black Sea, along with some colonies in North Africa, Southern France and Spain. Modern Greece is just a part of it.
There are as many as 63 different folk dances in Greece.
80 percent of the landscape of Greece is comprised of mountains.
Cook a Greek meal
Prepare and serve Greek Chicken and Potatoes, a Greek salad, Bourekakia, and white grape juice (for the children) and/or white wine (for the adults). Be sure to include some Greek music and occasionally say "Opa!" whenever you get excited about something.
- Prep time: 10 min
- Cook time: 35 min
- Ready in: 45 min
- Yields: 4-6
Greek Chicken and Potatoes
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts cut in 3/4 inch cubes
- 2 cups cubed potatoes, (I used Simply Potatoes Diced Potatoes sold in the refrigerated section of the grocery store.)
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 1 chicken bouillon cube dissolved in1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (juice from 1 lemon)
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- salt and pepper
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Place the chicken, potatoes, and garlic in a 9 X 13 inch casserole dish. Season with salt and pepper. Pour the chicken bouillon over the ingredients in the dish. In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice and crumbled oregano. Pour that evenly over the chicken and potatoes. Bake 30-35 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and potatoes are tender and golden brown, basting occasionally with pan juices. (This recipe came from food.com.)
- Prep time: 15 min
- Ready in: 15 min
- Yields: 6
- 6 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 2 minced garlic cloves
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- salt and pepper
- 1 head lettuce torn into bite-size pieces (Romaine is good or use bagged salad mix)
- 3 large seeded and chopped plum tomatoes
- 1 peeled and chopped cucumber
- 1 sliced medium red onion (cut it into thin rings & soak them for 10 minutes in a small bowl of ice water if you want to make them less sharp)
- 1 chopped small green pepper
- 3/4 cup kalamata olive
- 3/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
- Whisk dressing ingredients together until blended. Season it with salt and pepper to taste. Drain the onions from the ice water and pat dry with paper towels. In a large bowl combine all the salad ingredients. Toss the salad with the dressing. Sprinkle the cheese over it and serve. (This recipe came from food.com.)
- Prep time: 25 min
- Cook time: 1 hour
- Ready in: 1 hour 25 min
- Yields: 42 pieces
Bourekakia (Baklava 'Cigars')
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 3 cinnamon sticks
- 3 whole cloves
- 3 cups ground walnuts
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 2 beaten egg whites (get them to room temperature and then beat them to the consistency of mayonnaise)
- 1 lb phyllo/filo dough (found near the desserts in the frozen section of the grocery store)
- 1 cup melted butter
- confectioners/powdered sugar for dusting
- For syrup: Cook all ingredients in saucepan over low heat, swirling pan occasionally, until sugar dissolves, then boil 15 minutes. Cool completely; strain.
- For filling: Combine walnuts, cinnamon and cloves. Blend in 1 cup syrup and whites (mixture should not be too stiff; add up to 1/4 cup additional syrup, if necessary.).
- To assemble: Preheat oven to 350°F. Cut phyllo into 5 x 8 inch strips. Cover with plastic wrap and a damp towel until ready to use. Take a strip and brush it lightly with melted butter. Spread 1 heaping teaspoon of filling along narrow edge. Fold in sides Â½ inch toward center; brush sides lightly with butter; roll up tightly. Repeat with remaining strips. Arrange seam side down on baking sheet. Brush with remaining butter. (They can be frozen at this point. Increase the baking time to 30-35 minutes if baking them frozen). Bake until golden and crisp, 20-25 minutes. Cool completely. Dust lightly with powdered sugar. (This recipe came from food.com.)
Greek "Pottery" Paper Plate
Read a book about Greece
This is a delightful 64 page picture book that gives a tour of Greece the way it was 60 years ago and the way it is now. It includes much of what comes to mind when you think of traditional Greece.
Pray for the people of Greece
To find out about the religious nature of Greece and specific ways you can pray for the country, go to operationworld.org.
Visiting Greece on YouTube
Have you ever been to Greece?
Where is Athens, the capital of Greece?
Other countries that begin with the letter G
Would you prefer to study a different country? Try one of these.
Ready to visit other countries?
Go to around-the-world-in-26-letters to find links to all the countries we "visited." Each webpage features a menu, craft, books, video clips, worksheets, and more!