The eftazymo is a kind of bread made without yeast, but with the help of the chickpeas. Its proper name is “aftozymos bread” which in greek means “self kneaded” and self inflated without yeast. Looking back in the past we would see our grandmothers prepare this type of dough during the night in order to knead the eftazymo first thing in the morning.
A little bit of Chickpea, ground in warm water, a little flour, a little pepper and a warm hug to make the mixture rise. Early in the morning, and while the oven is smoldering, the “kounenos” (this special mixture which had been inflated during the night) is mixed with flour and warm water. This special yeast dough is now made and with the same perseverance they wait for the yeast to rise and then they start kneading. If everything goes according to plan, mahlab is mixed with mastic and cumin, salt and sugar, and all these are added in the dough. Of course this pure yeast cannot be formed unless it is sprinkled with olive oil, one the most valuable products. Women knead this sweet dough with their hands, forming it into bread and adorn it with a little sesame. After a short time it is ready to be placed in the oven and bake. When the oven opens, the whole neighborhood smells. A smell that can easily satisfy the sense of hunger and increase it at the same time. Some of the neighbors come to get a loaf of this delicious bread.
Nowadays we continue this particular inheritance of our ancestors. We maintain their habits and their recipes and we try to achieve their taste, the taste of the past.