Saturday, 30 March 2019

Ancient Greek and Roman 'coffee' with a twist

The acanthus, a thistle like plant, is found all round the Mediterranean. Since the time of the ancient Greeks its leaves have been used as a motif in decoration, especially on the Corinthian columns of the great antique temples.

About 20 miles inland from the Mediterranean Turkish town of Silifke are the ruins of the vast holy city of Diocaesarea [ now known as Uzuncaburc = Tall columns]. There are plenty of examples of acanthus carved capitals, most sadly tumbled by age and earthquakes.

Acanthus = kenger in Turkish

At the entrance to the site there are a number of basic shops and cafes, where you can buy embroidery, lace or knitted goods; and have a simple meal of 'sikma' - a cheese pancake, and a drink of kenger coffee. This is the same as the ancient Greek / Roman coffee, made from the dried seed pods of the thistle-like acanthus plant - a tradition which has come down many centuries.
The shop sign says Kenger Kahve bulunur
we sell Kenger Coffee

Drinking this brew under the tall columns with their acanthus leaf carvings makes the experience special. 

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