What is the "Spoon sweets" (γλυκό του κουταλιού 'sweet of the spoon') are popular in Greece and Cyprus, usually served with Greek coffee and a glass of cold water. Most are made of whole fruit, though some kinds are made of pieces or purees. One typically Greek spoon sweet is the snow-white and intensely aromatic vaníllia (βανίλια, [v...a'nilja]) which is not made of vanilla, but of mastic resin, for which the Aegean island of Chios is famous. This is usually served as a spoonful of sweet on a table spoon dropped into a tall glass of ice-cold water and popularly called "βανίλια υποβρύχιο", a "vanilla submarine". It is a thick, white, sweet paste made industrially by beating mastic resin with table sugar. When cold, it has the consistency of hard caramel candy: it is meant to be licked like a lollipop as, at body temperature, it gradually becomes softer and more chewable. The Greek diaspora introduced this treat to other countries as far away as Japan.
Tonio Borg - Member of the European Commission, responsible for Health and Consumer Policy
Tonio Borg, European Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy, attends the Joint meeting of the High Level Group on Nutrition and Physical Activity and the EU Platform for Action on Diet, Physical Activity and Health
Brussels, Belgium, 20 June 2013