Who hasn’t ever eaten seftalia (a special recipe of pork and lamb meat with mixed spice) and halloumi (kind of cheese)? Cypriot dishes stand out for their tastiness and special flavour. Cyprus has recipes that are a mixture of Greek and middle eastern cultures. We can certainly talk about gastronomic tourism since many of the travellers have as a priority the testing of various local flavours.
The Cypriot cuisine combines hearty dishes based on meat as well as special cheese, together with unique sweets made of carob-honey and grape. All this is sprinkled with remnants of elements from ancient civilizations: such as local vegetables and old Phoenician delicacies.
When you arrange your trip to the “Great Island”, sure thing is that you will find authentic flavours that do not exist elsewhere. Here are some gastronomic stops you need to make…
In Limassol for traditional little bites.
Cypriot cuisine testing without snacks and little bites is not possible. And in Limassol they know how to make it. It is a variety of small dishes that are combined to create an incredible feast. Definitely the appetizer is a good starting point to familiarize yourself with the local cuisine and what awaits you in terms of flavours and delights. From special cheeses and cold cuts to other unusual little bites, there’s no way you won’t enjoy what you eat.
In Lefkara for the famous Tavas (another special recipe of pork and lamb cooked in a pot)
In one of the traditional villages that Cyprus has, which is Lefkara, you will taste one of the most special flavours. The famous traditional tavas. Tavas of Lefkara is made from lamb or goat meat and rice. In the clay container (tavas) they put together with the meat, rice and then in layers the onions, tomatoes and potatoes. If just hearing of it whets your appetite, can you imagine its taste?
In Larnaca for classic traditional dishes
That’s where you’re going to try everything. From halloumi cheese and seftalia to braised, clay-roasted stew, fresh fish, grilled meats and even legumes in various versions. All are authentically made, with the passion and experience of years passed. If you combine them with the appetizers and wine of Cyprus, the result speaks directly to the palate. That’s where you’ll try the weirdest dishes and appetizers. It is worth accompanying your dishes with authentic traditional music played in many taverns of the city. Cyprus has flavours that you are going to really remember.
In Krasochoria (Wine Villages) for genuine authentic wine
Cyprus has no other place like this where you will find such a large presence of wineries as on the southern slopes of the Troodos mountain range! Collectively the villages are known as “Krasochoria” (Wine Villages),a name that indicates in itself the rich winemaking history of the region. In Krasochoria there is a wide variety of strong red dry wines on which the whole tourist movement of the kind is directed.
Cyprus and its sweets
You can’t eat without dessert. Cyprus is also famous for its sweets. Some of them definitely stand out. We are talking about milkshakes, pies with the honey, the anarocrema (a creme made of a kind of cheese called mizithra) and the cookies with carob-honey. In every town and village, you will find variations as well as authentic recipes. Of course, the menu does not lack “spoon sweets” (sweets made of fruit with plenty of syrup which are eaten by spoon, thus the name) for those who prefer something more classic.
What makes the gastronomy of Cyprus a key reason to visit the island is that these traditions are still preserved to this day. Visitors and locals have the opportunity to enjoy, taste and share the aromatic and abundant daily experience of Cypriot cuisine!