venerdì 12 giugno 2009

Banitsa (also transliterated as banica and banitza) is a traditional Bulgarian pastry prepared by layering a mixture of whisked eggs and pieces of sirene between filo pastry and then baking it in an oven.
Traditionally, lucky charms are put into the pastry on certain occasions, particularly on Christmas Eve, the first day of Christmas, or New Year's Eve. These charms may be coins or small symbolic objects (e.g., a small piece of a dogwood branch with a bud, symbolizing health or longevity). More recently, people have started writing happy wishes on small pieces of paper and wrapping them in tin foil. Wishes may include happiness, health, or success throughout the new year.
Banitsa is served for breakfast with plain yogurt, ayran, or boza. It can be eaten hot or cold. Some varieties include banitsa with spinach (spanachena banitsa) or the sweet version, banitsa with milk (mlechna banitsa) or pumpkin (tikvenik).

Tarator (Bulgarian: таратор) is a cold soup (or a liquid salad), popular in the summertime in Albania, Bulgaria and the Republic of Macedonia. It is made of yogurt, cucumbers, garlic, walnuts, dill, vegetable oil, and water. It is best served chilled or even with ice. Local variations may replace yogurt with water and vinegar, omit nuts or dill, or add bread. The cucumbers may on rare occasions be replaced with lettuce or carrots.

Tarator is a popular dish in Bulgaria; a salad version of tarator is known as "Snowwhite salad", (Bulgarian: салата Снежанка- "salata Snezhanka" or "Snezhanka" ). It is made of thick yogurt and no water. It can be served as an appetizer or as a side to the main meal. It is a common refresher during the summer.


In Bulgaria it is part of the traditional "Banitsa with Boza" breakfast.
It has a thick consistency and a low alcohol content (usually around 1%), and has a slightly acidic sweet flavor.

Yoghurt, yogurt, yoghourt, youghurt or yogourt (see spelling below), is a dairy product produced by bacterial fermentation of milk. Fermentation of the milk sugar (lactose) produces lactic acid, which acts on milk protein to give yoghurt its texture and its characteristic tang. Soy yoghurt, a dairy yoghurt alternative, is made from soy milk.

Shkembe chorba
Shkembe chorba (Cyrillic: Шкембе чорба; is kind of tripe soup. It contains animal intestines and it is a traditional Bulgarian dish. Tripe is the thick lining of the cleaned stomach of cattle. Shkembe chorba is made with milk, garlic, vinegar, and chili peppers as seasoning. Different versions of the soup are quite common in the eating places all over Eastern Europe and the Balkans.According to popular belief and based on anecdotal evidence, shkembe chorba alleviates hangovers if consumed after drinking. This may be due to the combination of liquid, salt, vinegar, and fats like milk and sunflower oil used in the preparation, which are known to reduce gastrointestinal discomfort associated with hangovers.

In Bulgaria, meatballs are called 'kyufte' and are usually made of a mixture of beef and pork with breadcrumbs and sliced onions. Many other variations exist including different kinds of meat and chopped vegetables.

Shumen (Bulgarian: Шумен) is a city in the northeastern part of Bulgaria, capital of Shumen Province. The Turkish form of the name Şumnu dates back to the Ottoman Empire. From 1950–1965 it was called Kolarovgrad, after Vasil Kolarov. Other English variants include Shoumen and Šumen. The city has a population of 103,016 by permanent address (2006).

The city lies 80 km west of Varna and is built within a cluster of hills, northern outliers of the eastern Balkans, which curve round it on the west and north in the shape of a horse-shoe. A rugged ravine intersects the ground longitudinally within the horse-shoe ridge. From Shumen roads radiate northwards to the Danubian cities of Rousse and Silistra and to Dobruja, southwards to the passes of the Balkans, and eastwards to Varna and Balchik. Shumen has, therefore, been one of the most important military positions in the Balkan Peninsula.

In 811 Shumen was burned by the emperor Nicephorus, and in 1087 it was besieged by Alexius I. During the golden age of Bulgarian culture under Simeon the Great (866-927), Shumen was a centre of cultural and religious activity, and may have born the name Simeonis. Until the 15th century, the city was located around the Shumen Fortress, a sophisticated complex of defensive installations, religious and civil buildings.

In 1388 the sultan Murad I forced it to surrender to the Ottoman Turks. After Władysław Warneńczyk's unsuccessful crusade in 1444, the city was destroyed by the Ottomans and moved to its present location. In the 18th century it was enlarged and fortified. Three times, in 1774, 1810 and 1828, it was unsuccessfully attacked by Russian armies. The Turks consequently gave it the name of Gazi ("Victorious"). In 1854 it was the headquarters of Omar Pasha and the point at which the Turkish army concentrated (See Crimean War).

During the 19th century Shumen was an important centre of the Bulgarian National Revival, with the first celebration of Cyril and Methodius in the Bulgarian lands taking place on 11 May 1813 and the first theatre performance. A girls' religious school was established in 1828, a class school for girls and a chitalishte (community centre) followed in 1856. The first Bulgarian symphony orchestra was founded in the city in 1850. In the same year, influential Hungarian politician and revolutionary leader Lajos Kossuth spent a part of his exile in the then-Ottoman town of Shumen. The house he lived in is still preserved as a museum.

On the 22nd June 1878 Shumen finally capitulated to the Russians and became part of the newly-independent Principality of Bulgaria. In 1882 the Shumen Brewery, one of the first breweries in Bulgaria, was founded.

Shumen boasts the Monument to 1300 Years of Bulgaria, regarded as the only monument in the world to depict the history of a whole country from its creation to the present day.
The Shumen Fortress, partially restored after being destroyed by the Ottomans in the past, is an important historical monument of the medieval Bulgarian Empire. It is located not far from the city on the Shumen Plateau.
The Madara Horseman, a World Heritage Site, is an ancient (710 AD) monument usually attributed to the Bulgar culture, and lies some 20 km from Shumen.
The religious buildings in the city include the Eastern Orthodox Holy Three Saints Cathedral and Holy Ascension Basilica, as well as the Tombul Mosque, the largest mosque in Bulgaria and one of the largest in the Balkans, serving Shumen and the region's Muslim minority.

Bulgaria - Shumen

martedì 2 giugno 2009

Crotone, a city of the gods

Crotone, Italian city of Calabria

Le Castella


Crotone is an important centre of commerce and industry. Its name derives from the greek Kroton, mythological hero mistakenly killed by Hercules, which je to diagnostics, promised that there would be a city that sort would bring the name killed.
Fourth largest city in the region, today Crotone is an important centre for Calabria both economically and tourism.

Crotone is situated on an area of 179.79 sq km and has a population of about 60,000 inhabitants. It faces the Ionian with approximately 50 km of coastline protected where they live in an unpolluted habitat, rare specimens of flora and fauna. To the south of Crotone was founded in 1991 Nature Reserve Capo Rizzuto, in order to protect those coasts of the Mediterranean still intact.
The town of Crotone is divided into two parts: the old, which sits on a hill, surrounded by medieval walls and modern, composed of districts dating back to 1870.
Among the rivers that cross the Marquis of Crotone include Neto, and Tacina Esaro.

The old city, surrounded by medieval walls, is home to several churches and many noble palaces.
The Cathedral, which dates to the ninth century. Lies on a plant with three naves. Inside you can admire the ceiling barrel and numerous church ornaments, decorations Baroque paintings dating back to the'600, a baptismal font twelfth century. A wooden body of the'700 and an icon of the fifteenth century. Representing the Virgin and Child, called Capocolonna, very dear to the city.
Among the buildings noble note Zurlo House that has a beautiful stone portal and style Ionic capitals.
Palazzo Olivieri - Susanna was built in 1526. The coat of arms shows a dove with an olive branch, probably a symbol of peace reached with the marriage between families Olivieri and Susanna.
Sculco Palace and Casa Turano both dated to the seventeenth century.: Architectural aspects of the'600 linked to the Spanish domination and'700, such as balconies arc.
The Castle is located in the old town of Crotone. Built nell'840 AD to defend the city dall'incursione of Saracens, was amended in 1541 by King Charles V. Presents a plant and two polygonal towers: one, more massive, called Tower and another dell'Aiutante Torre said the Commander.
To visit the Villa Comunale, a park of 2 hectares rich in trees. Inside the house, connected to the Old Town from 4 inputs, there is a staircase paved, lighted by beautiful lamps.
Because of the danger of attacks by the Turks, were strengthened coastal defenses through the construction of numerous towers. A Crotone you can see the Tower of Nao, used today in museum exhibits divers, and the Tower of Tonda, the Martello Tower, the Tower of Scifo and the Tower of Capocolonna.

A Crotone take place during the year, many cultural and religious events.
During the months of April and May Crotone houses the National Motocross Championship on sand that attracts hundreds of fans from the province and the whole region.
Dell'Aurora The Festival is held in May. It 'a festival of music and culture that testifies to the importance of light for Crotonesi: the procession of Our Lady fact ends at dawn, cosÏ as the temple of Hera was once addressed to the east. The festival concludes with a concert organized in the early morning hours.
In August the municipality of Crotone organizes Kroton Jazz Festival, known musical event. Inside the Villa Comunale are organized concerts and exhibitions of the most famous artists of the genre.
Other festivals have to remember that of Saint Dionysius (October) and that of Saint Lucia (December).
Among the Fairs not forget your antiques, the first Sunday of every month and the Festival of the Kitchen Calabrese in September.

The craft crotonese is known for art goldsmith. Handicapped goldsmiths create magnificent jewels often inspired style greek and Byzantine treated in detail and finish.
Important including woodworking, ceramics, wood, of silver and production of sacred objects.

The kitchen of Crotone makes the most products of the earth, as cereals, citrus fruits, olives, vegetables and fruit. Widespread use of chili pepper, which adds a strong flavor to foods. Among the appetizers to try the sausages and dairy products, including the provola, fresh ricotta salata, and the many butirro preserves, such as that of pummadori sicchi, pipi salted, funci all'ogghio, alivi driven, sasizze, in addition to pilchard and soppressata. Among the dishes, include homemade pasta sauce seasoned with pork or how cavateddri maccarruni and fish soup. Among the main courses, the culinary tradition of Crotone offers second fish and meat, especially pork, accompanied by delicious contours of vegetables.
Among the desserts include the typical Pitta from Madonna and sanguinazzu. A Christmas to prepare the Easter crustuli while you can enjoy cuzzupa.
The dishes must be accompanied by absolutely delicious wines: Cirò, Melissa, Hippolytus, The Valley Neto, the Sant'Anna.

We must visit the museums of Crotone to admire the many testimonies of the period greek various dominations and that the city had to endure.
The State Archaeological Museum was established in 1910 and already hosted numerous findings came to light during finds not only sporadic, but even during regular excavation campaigns. The exhibition is divided into two sections: the ground floor there are artefacts that testify to the history of the city, from prehistory to the Middle Ages, the first floor houses the main findings from the Greek sanctuaries of Crotone. In Museo Civico are preserved all the testimonies of the period of the modern and medieval. The exhibition is divided into several parts: the section of heraldry, ceramic, armory, vintage photos and a section dedicated to ancient artefacts found in the houses of the city.

A Crotone you can enjoy all kinds of sports, especially those related to the sea, such as sailing and fishing. Good sports facilities.
Do not miss the National Motocross Championship to April-May.


Crotone is well connected with the rest of the region and with other Italian cities.
The SS. 106 is the main artery that runs along the entire coast ion, while the SS. 107 Crotone - Cosenza connecting the city with the various locations of Silas.
As for the links to small distance, the rail network is not well equipped, but on the other an excellent bus service ensures links with other cities and towns in the province. The rail links to long-distance services are more efficient.
Crotone also has a good airport in the area of S. Anna, a few kilometres from the city, in the town of Isola Capo Rizzuto.
To reach Crotone you can also take the A3, with exit Cosenza. It then continues on SS. 107.

150 090330 063312

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lunedì 1 giugno 2009


Portogallo Tradition King Christ’s Sanctuary: A Monument for Peace

The Santuário do Cristo Rei ( in English Christ, the King Sanctuary) is a landmark for Lisbon and particularly to Almada. It is a Catholic monument on the left bank of Tagus river, overlooking Lisbon, capital of Portugal, on the other bank. It is located in the civil parish of Pragal, in the city of Almada, in District of Setúbal, Lisbon Region. It is a national monument.
It was inspired by the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, after Cardinal Cerejeira, the patriarch of Lisbon, had been impressed by the visit to the Brazilian monument in 1934. The construction of Cristo-Rei was approved on a Portuguese Episcopate conference, held in Fátima on April 20, 1940, as a plea to God to release Portugal from entering World War II.
Therefore, the building of such an amazing monument was to be seen as a tribute to the fact that Portugal had been spared from getting involved in both the Spanish War and the IIWW. The construction started in 1950 and it was fully supported by Catholic donations only. When it was inaugurated on May 17, 1959, Portugal was under a dictatorship and being ruled by the President of the Council António de Oliveira Salazar, whose institutional relations with the Portuguese Catholic Church were tense.
The building
The base of the monument, by architect António Lino, is in the form of a gate, standing 75 m (246 ft) tall. At the top is a statue of Christ the Redeemer, designed by sculptor Francisco Franco de Sousa, 28 m (92 ft)-tall. The monument stands 113 meters above sea level At the base of the statue is an observation deck (altitude: 184 m / 604 ft) providing panoramic views of the city of Lisbon, the Tagus river (in Portuguese: Rio Tejo) and of the 25 de Abril Bridge (in Portuguese: Ponte 25 de Abril). It has become the most popular sightseeing site in Almada.
The building has been recently upgraded. Today the sanctuary has accommodation facilities for groups of pilgrims, conference rooms, canteens, shops and cafeteria. It is usual and fashionable practice to hold wedding or baptismal parties in a tent in the premises.
How to get there
By car (through the 25 de Abril Bridge) , by train (in Pragal station) or by ferry boat (called "Cacilheiro") crossing Tagus river from Cais do Sodré (Lisbon) to the port of Cacilhas, city of Almada, followed by a short bus trip.

Natural sights nearby
If you’re a sea lover, visit the beaches within a few miles: Costa da Caparica, Trafaria, Sesimbra, Tróia Peninsula, Portinho da Arrábida and Cape Espichel., among others. Within a short drive the Castles of Palmela, Sesimbra or if you fancy something green, the Arrábida mountain.


hasankeyf (near my city)

My city's slide - Mardin


Mardin - The Treasure of History

Mardin is a museum city full of twelfth and thirteenth century examples of Turkish architecture in harmony with nature. The bird's eye view of the Mesopotamian Plain from the historical city, founded on the southern terraces of the hardened oil masses which were active during the geological ages, is very beautiful. The external facades of the houses in the city are ornamented like jewels. Midyat County is known especially for its extremely beautiful historical houses and silversmithing. A special silver processing art which was called "Filigree" spread throughout Turkey from here. Mardin Castle (tenth century A.D.), the Grand Mosque (twelfth century), the Latifiye Mosque (fourteenth century) and the Kasimiye Madrasah (fifteenth century), located in the city which is famous for its citadel, mosques and bridges are worth seeing. The Deyrulzaferan Monastery is among the interesting places around the city. The monastery, which is the religious center of the Syrian Christians, has a past of 1600 years. There are the graves of the Syrian patriarchs at the monastery. Another monastery, which was famous for its rich library and where Syrian scientists were educated, is the Deyrulumur Monastery which was constructed on a hill covered with forests.

Cyprus - Deyrul Umur

Deyr Ul Umur (Mar Gabriel) (Midyat): It is 18 kilometres from east of Midyat. One of the renowned and big constructions of Süryani Kadim Community, the monastery was perched on a high hill. The foundation of the building was commenced in 397 and completed in a short period of time. Through various periods additions had been made inside and outside of the monastery. These are; shelters and prayer lodges of priest constructed during King Arkadius period, monument house constructed during King Theodosyus ( today it is in service as Virgin Mary Church)to place tombs in it,, Resuller Church, Kırk Şehitler Church, the temple where Mar Şumuel was buried, Dome of Theodora ascending on eight arches located in the southwest of the monastery, the dome constructed by the Egyptians who participated in the affairs of the monastry as they had attracted by the grandeur of the structure and the grand Tomb built by King Anastos in 512 and famous with its motifs and mosaics.

Romania Arad County

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Towards Bran Castle



Present Ingles

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