Greeks love their food. They love to eat and also to feed others. Greece is a place where it is guaranteed that you will never go hungry. Imagine that Greeks eat up to five times a day.
Greek cuisine mainly uses fresh local ingredients, such as vegetables, olive oil, Greek yogurt, Greek honey, feta cheese, various types of fish and meat, and grains. Greek dishes are delicious and prepared from a wide variety of fresh and dried herbs. If you’re traveling to the Mediterranean to try Greek cuisine, be sure to try at least a few of these delicious dishes.
Greek cuisine as an integral part of the Mediterranean diet
The Greek diet is an important part of Mediterranean cuisine and has something in common with the traditional cuisine of Italy, the Balkans, Turkey and the Levant (an area known as the Eastern Mediterranean).
Although each country has its own variety of foods and traditions, many recipes are similar in terms of ingredients and nutritional value.
The Greek culinary identity is rich and deeply rooted in time. Greece has one of the oldest culinary traditions in the world.
Ancient Greek cuisine has been the subject of study and historical revival in recent years. The written texts of antiquity impressively describe the eating habits of our ancestors on the Greek islands and on the Greek mainland.
Vegetables, olive oil, grains, fish, wine and meat are widely used in modern Greek cuisine. Other important products are olives, cheese, eggplant, pumpkins and yogurt. The main characteristics of Greek sweets are nuts and honey, while various fruits are often used.
Another important aspect of Greek cuisine is the appetizers. Also known as “snacks”, a timeless name known around the world. Refer to a traditional selection of small dishes, usually served with wine, ouzo or tsipouro in taverns.
From the very first years, the way of preparing food and sweets in different parts of the country, from place to place, from house to house, and from restaurant to restaurant, contributed to the creation of the famous, traditional Greek cuisine.
The inhabitants of the Greek provinces were the “editors” and at the same time the protagonists of Greek cuisine and its dishes! They set their preferences, their own special tastes and created the local traditional cuisine based on their local products.
It is understood that local conditions play a role in shaping local cuisine. The natural wealth, its climate and the influences that each region has received from different peoples and different traditions have clearly influenced the local cuisine and its dishes.
Greek cuisine has been influenced by various cuisines and traditions. The influence of neighboring Turkey is evident today in appetizers such as tzatziki, but also in main dishes such as Imam Baildi (roasted eggplant stuffed with tomato, onion, garlic and parsley), Moussaka and the famous Baklava and Kataifi sweets.
He was also influenced by the Venetian tradition. Most affected were the regions of the Ionian Sea, where the Venetians lived for many years as conquerors, thus leaving its inhabitants with a strong preference for pasta and various pies.
The result of this cultural encounter together with the imagination of the Greek people and the exceptional quality products of the Greek land, led to the formation of the Greek culinary tradition, which is rightly considered one of the richest and most delicious in the world.
Greek cuisine offers an amazing, rich variety of dishes and drinks and is the cultural heritage of the centuries. In every Greek recipe, the combination of fresh ingredients and cooking techniques is a unique culinary journey through the history of Greece.