Traditional Greek Dishes
There are plenty of reasons to visit Greece: remarkable history, extraordinary beaches, endless nightlife, overwhelming hospitality, you know the drill! Perhaps the most important reason is the incredible Greek food! If you want a true taste of Greek cuisine, there are a few dishes you simply can’t miss!
This is possibly the most iconic of all Greek dishes! The word “souvlaki” itself means small pieces of meat on a skewer, however, Greeks tend to refer to all pita wraps as souvlaki! A classic souvlaki consists of pieces of pork/chicken or gyro meat, fries, sliced tomatoes, onion and tzatziki sauce wrapped in pita bread. For our vegan friends, meat can be replaced with veggies (e.g. mushrooms), halloumi cheese or even a meat-free burger patty! No matter how you like it, one thing is certain: you can’t eat just one!
There is only one word to describe this dish. Legen-wait for it… DARY! LEGENDARY! You can’t say you’ve truly visited Greece unless you eat Moussaka! A base of juicy minced beef cooked in tomato sauce layered with sweet eggplants and potatoes, topped with a thick layer of bechamel sauce all baked to perfection. Where to find this delish food from heaven? Almost every Greek tavern serves Moussaka. You’re welcome!
If you like oven-baked pasta (I mean, who doesn’t?!), we guarantee that you will love this dish! Layers of pasta, seasoned minced beef and bechamel sauce are baked together to create the Greek version of lasagna and the greatest comfort food!
Yemista (or Gemista)
If you are vegetarian, you will absolutely froth this dish! If you are not a vegetarian, you will love it as well! Yemista is a traditional recipe, ideal after a long day at the beach! Baked big juicy tomatoes and peppers stuffed with a healthy mixture of rice and various herbs (sometimes mixed with minced beef) create the ultimate summer food! Pro Greek tip: add a generous piece of feta cheese on the side!
Yes, we know, you are probably wondering where is the Greek salad on this post! Well, although the Greek salad is the OG, dakos is the holy grail dish with a base of soaked dried barley rusks topped with chopped tomatoes, feta cheese, olives, capers, virgin olive oil and oregano. It’s a super healthy and delicious dish, ideal if you want to taste the traditional ingredients of the Mediterranean cuisine!
We only need four words to describe this classic Greek dish! Crispy. Tender. Fried. Meatballs. Keftedes (or keftedakia) is a Greek appetizer dish, often served with a creamy yoghurt sauce or cooked in tomato sauce. Couldn’t be simpler, couldn’t be tastier!
In Greek, “pita” is the word to describe a savoury or sweet pie. Pies were part of the everyday diet of Ancient Greeks and they are still some of the most popular foods! The best way to enjoy a pie is on the go as a morning or midday snack and you can easily find it in a bakery in every corner! There are literally hundreds of different types of pies in different shapes and flavours. Must-try: tiropita (cheese pie), spanakopita (spinach pie), kotopita (chicken pie), bougatsa (sweet semolina pie).
Youvetsi or Giouvetsi is a flavourful beef stew with orzo pasta topped with Greek kefalotyri cheese! Best part of this authentic Greek dish? It’s a one-pot (usually made of clay) meal, low ‘n’ slow! The perfect dish for a Sunday family lunch that makes every Greek soul melt at the sound of it!
Here comes the Greek culinary masterpiece named after the small frying pan it is cooked in, saganaki! A prawn dish in a rich tomato sauce, with garlic and chilli, topped with creamy feta cheese and served with heaps of crusty bread. If you’re not a big fan of the prawns but you love cheese, you can try the simple version of cheese saganaki which is fried cheese, served with lemon! We’re not drooling, you are!
Last but not least, the all-time favourite traditional Greek dessert: galaktoboureko! This golden crispy perfection consists of a rich and creamy semolina custard baked in layers of buttery phyllo and soaked in scented syrup. Absolutely delicious!
You can read more about Greek cuisine, historical cities, picturesque islands and vacation spots at medexperience.com a website dedicated to Greece and its beautiful culture