The “trachanas” is a very popular soup in Cyprus. It is delicious and very nutritious. Its main ingredients are sour milk and coarse wheat. Below, we will explain briefly how is made.
The wheat is washed and then it is grinded on a quern. The grinding is done by inverse rotation so that the seeds are shelled and broken. When the procedure is completed, the sour milk is poured in the “chartzin” (large bronze vessel) with the coarse wheat. The mixture is heated and mixed until it becomes thick and creamy. When it cools down, it is cut in balls and put in the “tsestous” (dish made of straw) until it becomes dry. These dried pieces are kept in a cool place and they are preserved for a very long period.
Every time that someone wants to cook trachanas, they take some of these small pieces and put them in the water for some hours. Thereafter, they boil it in broth. While boiling, you can add a little bit of milk or small pieces of halloumi. The trachanas is served hot with salt, pepper and lemon.
In older times this soup was very popular, especially for the cold winter nights. The villagers also used to eat it before they left for work at dawn. It is still the favorite soup of the Cypriots. Nowadays, you can find it in supermarkets.