History of Food: Pasta

The first form of food similar to pasta was in the writings of Horace where thin strips of dough were fried and served with spices in the 1st century B.C.E. A few centuries later, we see an ancient ancestor of modern day lasagna come out in the form of lagana. It was described to be consisted of sheets of dough with meat filling in between. In the second century, the dough started to be made with flour and water instead of juice from lettuce. Later, Arabs adopted a similar form of noodle in the 5th century and lead to the Italians making thin strip noodle pasta.


If we jump to the 15th century, dried pasta was very valued because it could be stored for very long periods of time.That’s why many exploring ships brought dried pasta to the New World. Believe it or not, tomato sauce was only invented in the 18th century! Before this, people would just eat pasta with their hands. Now, people eat it with forks because the tomato would get too messy without it.


Today, the average Italian eats about sixty pounds of pasta per year, while the average American eats about twenty pounds of pasta per year. Writings suggest it originated in Italy, but why is it popular in North America? It’s because Italian immigration to the Americas that we love pasta so much. Italians have also had a mass immigration to South Africa, making spaghetti and meatballs a major part of Italian cuisine.


Do you like pasta? How do you eat yours? Comment, if you want, I guess.


Angkor Wat: The World’s Largest Religious Monument

Angkor Wat, located in Siem Reap Province in Cambodia, is the world’s largest religious monument. “Angkor” comes from Sanskrit and means “city” while Wat is Khmer for “temple.” Cambodians are usually referred to as Khmer people and Thai are referred to as Siem. So, the name Siem Reap means “Thai Defeat,” but that’s another story. Angkor Wat also appears on the national flag of Cambodia.

Angkor Wat was originally built in the 12th century by king Suryavarman II as a Hindu temple. It was a dedication to Vishnu. Later, in the 16th century, Buddhism took over and Angkor Wat was converted to a Buddhist temple. The Buddhists tried to paint the giant wall mural depicting several scenes from Hinduism and in some parts, you can actually touch the carved stone on the mural.

Angkor Wat lies on an island 1km x 1.5km with a 1 km wide moat on all sides. There are two entrances: the front in the west and the back in the east. Angkor Wat, unlike most temples, faces to the west instead of the east to signify that Suryavarman was intending to be buried there. Inside the temple, there is a central point where you can see in all four directions, many intricate and sometimes unfinished carvings, and a big central tower which was the king’s tomb. The central has really steep stairs that you could be afraid of going up and down.

Overall, Angkor Wat is a great place and has a lot of extra history and details to it, and it is also a great tourist destination.

Hehe, It’s a Lizard!

I took this picture of a really cool lizard in Cambodia.

Gods Versus Demons

This picture was taken by the wall mural in Angkor Wat. If you look closely, the ones facing to the right are different from the ones facing to the left. The gods are facing to the right and the demons … Continue reading

Khmer BBQ

I took this picture in Cambodia of a Khmer hot pot barbecue. They give you all the raw ingredients and you cook them yourself.

Solid Palm Sugar

I took this picture in The Siem Reap Province in Cambodia. They take the liquid palm sugar from the palm fruit and cook it until it is solid like a sugar cube except all natural.

Around the World from A to Z: Greece

Greece is a popular tourist destination in Europe. Exquisite beaches line the peninsula’s border, Mount Olympus houses the ancient Greek gods, and the first signs of philosophy are traced back to the early Greeks. White sand beaches and beautiful harbors attract countless tourists to Greece every year. The Greek gods are known and taught worldwide. The Greeks were also the first to write down philosophies, so now we know the ideas of Socrates, Plato, Aristotle and many others. Overall, Greece is the best place to go for a relaxing but educational vacation.
With over eight thousand miles of coastline, Greece is great place to go for exotic beaches. Beaches extend countless miles. Blonde stretches of sand with dunes, pebble beaches, caves with steep rocks and dark sand typical of volcanic soil line Greece’s coasts. Greek beaches are not only known for their beauty, but also for their cleanliness, easily seen in the crystal-clear waters. Greece also offers many idyllic resorts for fun and relaxation. It’s no surprise that Greek beaches are some of the most popular in the world.
Greece is a developed country with fish being one of Greece’s main economic exports. Greece’s prime minister is Karolos Papoulias and he has been in office for almost eight years. Although many perceive Greece’s economy to be poor, there are a few pros about the country’s economical stature. Greece is a part of the European Union, allowing the country to trade easily and have more access to allies. Also, tourism is a huge part of the economy, and the tourism most comes from Greece’s history.

Photo Credit: massonth

Poseidon, one of many Greek gods, is the god of the ocean. According to Greek mythology, Athena and Poseidon agreed that whoever gave Athens the best gift would become guardian over the city. Though Poseidon gave the gift of water, Athena’s gift of an olive tree was thought by the other gods to be more valuable because Poseidon’s salt water was of no use to the Greeks.
Ancient Greek philosophy is dominated by three very famous men: Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. All three of them lived in Athens for most of their lives, and they knew each other. Socrates came first, and around 400 BC, Plato became his apprentice. Socrates was killed in 399 BC, and Plato began his work by writing down what Socrates had taught him, and then continued by writing down his own ideas and opening a school. Aristotle, who was younger, came to study at Plato’s school, and ended up starting his own school as well.
Greece is a fascinating and enjoyable place to go for vacation. Many people want to go to Greece and see the things that they’ve seen in history and geography books. Greece is the perfect vacation destination: beaches for relaxing and the intriguing monuments for sightseeing. All in all, it is a highly recommended country to visit, at any time in the year.

Next in series: Around the World from A to Z: Honduras by emmakitkat

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