This stencil helps you make a beautiful presentation with your koliva offering. Place it on top of your smooth powdered sugar "canvas" and dust with cinnamon so that when you carefully lift the stencil the beautiful design will be left. Continue to embellish your koliva with decorative borders made with walnuts, almonds or raisins as desired.
6 3/4" diam.
A word about Koliva
Koliva, also spelled kollyva, kollyba or colivă, is a dish based on boiled wheat that is used liturgically in the Eastern Orthodox Church for commemorations of the dead.
In the Eastern Orthodox Church, koliva is blessed during funerals, as well as during the memorial service (mnemosyno) that is performed at various intervals after a person's death and on special occasions, such as the Saturday of Souls (ψυχοσάββατο). It may also be used on the first Friday of Great Lent, at Slavas, or at mnemosyna in the Christmas meal.
The primary ingredient is wheat kernels which have been boiled until they are soft, they are drained very well and spread on a cloth to be just moist, and then sweetened with honey or sugar. Koliva also contains some or all of the following: wheat, sesame seeds, almonds, ground walnuts, cinnamon, sugar, pomegranate seeds, raisins, anise and parsley. It is traditional to decorate the top with cross or floral motifs, initials of the deceased, even elaborate icons made from colored sugars.
Orthodox Christians consider koliva to be the symbolic of death and resurrection, according to the words of the Gospel:Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a grain of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. (John 12:24)
Wheat which is planted in the earth and rises in new life is symbolic of those beloved departed who have died in the hope of resurrection, in accordance with the words of Saint Paul:So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption. It is sown in dishonour, it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness, it is raised in power. It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body....(1 Corinthians 15:42-44)
(taken from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koliva)
Here's a few Koliva making tips:
- Instead of laying the boiled wheat out on towels on your dining room table overnight, try this method. After boiling and rinsing the wheat berries, put small doses into a salad spinner to remove excess moisture. Then wrap up each small dose in a tea towel so it's like a little secure bundle. Put each tea-towel bundle into a plastic bag and seal it up tight and place in the refridgerator overnight. In the morning when you open up the bundles, you'll find that the wheat berries are dried perfectly and will easily slide off the tea towel into your large mixing bowl.
- Instead of using bread crumbs, try graham cracker crumbs. You can buy them already "crumbed" or you can pass graham crackers through a food processor to grind them up fine.
- If you can't find pomagrantes, try craisins instead. We like to chop up our craisins or raisins into smaller pieces before adding them to the mixture.