Tag Archives: traditional Greek food and drink

Amazing Greek dishes

Greece, as indeed all the countries of the Mediterranean basin, is full of delicious culinary specialties and above all made with the best local, and usually cheap ingredients. If you stick to eating typical foods and do not look for Italian spaghetti or British roast beef, just to give some examples.
Typical dishes Greeks are the mirror of the territory, so you will eat fish, meat, mostly lamb or goat, although pork is still present, as many vegetables such as cucumbers, peppers and tomatoes. Also diary products are remarkable such as famous kind of cheeses and yogurt.
Thre are as well nuts, such as almonds and walnuts, not forgetting the fresh fruit, such as figs, used in every way during the traditional cooking.
For drinks instead, being a territory favorable to growing vines, the wines never fail you. There is a wine very appreciated by the Greeks and tourists which is flavored with the resin of the pine tree, called retsina. Another very popular and fashionable drink, especially for the aperitif, is ouzo. It is a distilled grape reminiscent of aniseed taste; It served in all taverns and is certainly the most traditional Greek drink.

Pita_giros

Photo CC-BY-SA 3.0 by Takeaway

Bread is the traditional Greek pita, a bit like the Italian flat bread. It is small, flat and oval in shape and is wound as a cone you are able to fill with meat and veg.
The gyros pita is a pita filled with pork before roasted on a huge skewer and then cut (the spit turns close to the heat source, hence the origin of the name: gyros that is to turn). We are used to seeing in cities around the world the same preparation or almost, but it is Turkish and called kebab. The Souvlaki is a skewer of first marinated and then cooked on the grill meat. It can be pork, lamb or chicken.
The kontosouvli is made from lean pork, which is first marinade and then placed on a spit. The kokoretsi consists of offal, lamb or goat cooked on the grill.

Another important product for Greece is olive oil: its territory, in fact, is mostly covered with olive groves; the olives are consumed in large quantities, not only in Greece. Greek olives are known and loved around the world. Almost all Greek dishes containing olives, or at least as much olive oil. Anyway, it is well known that in all countries of South olive oil is certainly more of butter consumed in food preparation.
Greek yoghurt is also an increasingly popular product sold and exported throughout the world. It’s a little different than what you normally was used to eat: is made with sheep’s milk and as a result is more fat and thick. Yogurt is the ingredient found in many preparations of Greek cuisine, but the Greeks consume especially at breakfast, perhaps sweetened with honey.
Always starting from the milk of sheep but also goats, it is packaged feta cheese that is traditionally Greek. Its flavour changes according to its aging: the more seasoned, the more spicy and intense flavor will be.
Feta is very much used in salads, but also by itself it is excellent, seasoned with olive oil and oregano, both cold and cooked in the oven.

The moussaka is a pie of eggplant, roasted before and recovered the pulp, put in layers in a baking dish with the potatoes; It is sometimes enriched with minced meat.
The yemista bit is like the Italian stuffed peppers: here are stuffed with rice and mint and possibly of minced meat.
The isatziki is a salad, but also a dip, made with cucumber, yogurt and garlic.
The Greek salad par excellence consists kalamata olives, tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and feta.
The saganaki is instead a slice of cheese or feta baked in a pan until a crispy crust.

Saganaki
Photo CC-BY-SA 3.0 by Entheta

The fish comes in many meals and especially enjoyed barbecued. The taramosalata is instead a very special egg salad fish.
An important place has the traditional Greek sweets ; typically they are very sweet, often containing honey and dried fruit. The loukoumades are pancakes drenched in honey and cinnamon. The rizogalo is a sweet made from rice. The qurabiya cookies are made primarily during the Christmas period; in their preparation for the most important ingredient is the almond.
The sweet traditional Greek product for New Year is the Vassilopitta: the package fits a coin in the dough; the diner that find it certainly will have luck in the future (this is still the hope of many). There are still many other sweets, many made from puff pastry filled with all kinds of nuts such as almonds, walnuts, raisins, dates and figs above, then very often sprayed with honey. It is worth tasting them all, without worrying too much about calories!

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