In Greece, the Christmas holiday season lasts 12 days and includes Christmas, New Year and Epiphany. As old as Cristianity itself, there are many traditions and customs associated with this season, some quite old and others more recent, like the decoration of the Christmas tree and the turkey. But like everywhere else, Christmas is synonymous with excellent, tasty cuisine. Here are the typical Greek Christmas foods you can find on every table around Greece.
A Greek Food Experience
Greek breakfast from Crete
Wake up to and enjoy a delicious Greek breakfast! Nutritious specialties like real Greek yogurt, pure honey, the freshest fruits, free-range eggs, and traditional marmalades are just some of the Greek superfoods to boost your energy for the get-up and go to start your day.
Breakfast is definitely the most important meal of the day, a great source of energy to start an exciting day full of experiences and new adventures! The high nutritional value and the quality of the Mediterranean products, along with their tradition and experiential character, account for Greek breakfast’s special features.
Local Cuisine: Ionian
In the Ionian, you’ll find many culinary influences from the 400 years of Venetian occupation. Corfu is famous for dishes like pastitsada, beef or cockerel stewed with pasta, tomatoes and a touch of spice – hot paprika – not found in the rest of the islands. But thick tomato sauces, redolent of the sun and enriched by garlic and herbs, are common to all of them.
The rural and urban cooking of each region is a small but important piece of the puzzle called Greek cuisine. Until fairly recently, most tourists knew of only a small number of standard dishes – moussaka, tzatziki, Greek salad, stuffed vine leaves, baklava – without realizing that each corner of this incredibly varied country has its own specialties.
This summer dive into a sea of flavours and aromas! Greek cuisine is ideal for warmer days, as it combines the benefits of the so-called Mediterranean diet with the unique taste, colour and flavour of its basic ingredients. Discover the culinary treasures of the Greek land, such as juicy fruits and vegetables, nutritious pulses, fresh fish and seafood combined into delicious dishes which will satisfy even the pickiest palate. Choose the menu that suits you best and get a taste of Greek summer!
Chios is a hospitable island all year round and offers a world of images, colours, tastes and aromas. The mild Mediterranean climate in combination with the island’s rich soil yields quality products that are used to create a range of unique local dishes. Welcome to the land that boasts beautiful medieval villages, extraordinary beaches and the lovely Chios town that open-handedly gives savoury mandarins, home-made liquors, ouzo, spoon sweets and the famous mastic. Let’s travel together to this magical island and taste Chios’ particular dishes that will definitely make a lasting impression on your taste buds.
On your journey around the Aegean Sea, you are bound to be overwhelmed by captivating scents. This is a region of countless gastronomic discoveries: delicious white or tomato sauces, tenderly cooked pulses, home-grown vegetables, bread and rusks with a robust flavor given by the local wheat and barley varieties as well as the flavourful fresh goat cheese compose a mouthwatering cuisine.
What are pulses
Pulses are dried fruit of an entire category of plants who belong to the family of legumes (Leguminosae) and took their name from the characteristic lobe that protects the seed during its formation and maturation. It is one of the key ingredients of Greek Mediterranean diet, as also a memory of our childhood, because of the persistence of Greek mothers in the consumption of pulses from all family members.
The fish dishes are the best ones as Greece is a country surrounded by the sea and fishing is a main factor of the Greek agriculture. But fish dishes are the tricky ones for the foreigners and tourist because in many Greek taverns the fishes are spelled wrongly and many west and north European tourists don't know so well the fishes of the Mediterranean.
The Greek food throughout its history and continuing today is for the Greeks a philosophy, they know that what makes a perfect feast is not just the food but also the good company. Food is nearly always prepared with the tastes of the guests in mind, should the dishes be roasted or fried, light or heavy? Much of the conversation at the dinner table centers amicably around the food. The freshness of the fish, having just leaped from the sea; the vegetables newly dug from the ground or picked from the vines of the local farmers. The host will want to proudly point out how they have attempted to provide the best and freshest produce for you to enjoy.
In Christianity, the period starting from the 25th of December, the day of Christmas, till the 5th of January is called the Twelvetide, meaning the twelve days of Christmas. During this festive season period, the annual celebration of the nativity of Jesus Christ takes place, which is concluded with the commemoration of His Baptism in the Jordan River at the day of the Epiphany.
Epirus’ is the north-west part of mainland Greece. Epirus has a very particular terrain, the mountainous areas, the sea, the climate and a centuries-old history have all played a part in creating countless dishes and tasty combinations that make up the local cuisine.
Greece is a country blessed with a rare Mediterranean beauty, which unfolds in an extraordinary diversity of land and seascapes, opening your horizons to every possible kind of experience, not least gastronomical. Forget that the Greek sun and sea are there to put the finishing touches on our beaches. Think instead of the delicious things they produce, from the copious quantities of miraculous olive tree to the lowliest mollusc.
When it came to food, the ancient Greeks revered three things: bread, wine and olive oil. They also stressed the importance of civilised, convivial eating – sitting down around a table to share a meal – which, like baking bread, fermenting grapes and pressing oil, was considered one of the signs of a civilised society. These days, not much has changed. Bread, wine and olive oil, along with fresh vegies, are the cornerstones of Greek cuisine. Known as the Mediterranean diet, it’s considered to be one of the healthiest models for eating.