Popular traditional Greek dishes
Traditional Greek food is made using fresh local produce. For this reason, the dishes vary in different parts of the country. However, the use of the finest ingredients like extra virgin olive oil is common. In islands, fish and seafood dishes are popular.
This includes dishes like astakos or lobster, htapodi which is grilled octopus, kalamari which is fried of stuffed squid, mydia or mussels and xifias which is swordfish. Other popular traditional seafood dishes are astakomakaronada, a dish of spaghetti with lobster, atherina or fried smelts, gavros which is marinated or fried anchovy and barbounia, a dish of red mullets.
In mainland Greece, meat dishes are the mainstay. Here, what is popular is giouvetsi, a dish of veal or lamb baked in an earthen pot with tomatoes and orzo, hilopites, made with pasta and chicken and keftedakia which is meatballs. Also popular here is kleftijo which is lamb that slow-baked in a marinade of lemon juice and garlic and moussaka, a dish that can be compared to Italian lasagna. It is a dish baked in the oven that has layers of minced meat and eggplant with a topping of savoury custard.
The mainland also has a traditional Sunday dish of baked chicken or lamb with potatoes and another of pork with leeks and celery.
Apart from the fish and seafood in the islands and meat dishes in the mainland, vegetables are also a mainstay of Greek food everywhere.
Popular vegetarian dishes and side dishes served with meat dishes are artichokes, okra, peas, green beans, eggplant, cabbage which are typically cooked with olive oil or tomato sauce. There is also briam which is a mix of tomatoes, eggplant, potatoes and onions. Soup made with chicken, beans, fish are also popular.
Whichever part of Greece you visit, tasteful dishes are a promise. Take every opportunity to sample the great local dishes and relive the memories by preparing the dishes in your home.