8 Mykonos Foods you Should Taste
Ιf you ask “What is Mykonos known for?”, 9 out of 10 people will mention the following: fabulous beaches, crystal clear azure waters, vibrant nightlife, countless beach bars & clubs, luxurious resorts, beautiful windmills, white-washed buildings, and picturesque cobble-stoned streets.
Yet there is something missing here. Can you spot it? Well, as the title suggests, it’s the food.
Less people than it should know about the rich culinary tradition of Mykonos island. Regardless, nobody should miss this experience when visiting the island!
Here’s an idea of what you should taste next time you visit “the island of winds”.
1. Mykonos Food – Louza
Louza is spicy and refined deli meat made from local pork. It is often called the Greek prosciutto. Louza comes from the best part of the animal – the filet. The pork’s fillet and tenderloin are left in salt for 24 hours to get dry and then are flavoured with many spices, including oregano and pepper. Then, the meat is placed into the pig’s biggest intestine and remains there for 20-25 days. Hanging in the air under the hot sun, this is where it will mature and obtain its final taste. Louza is mostly served in very thin slices and does not need to be refrigerated. It is an integral part of the famous Greek ‘‘meze’’, accompanied by fresh tomatoes, olives and feta cheese. You can taste Louza in most traditional Greek taverns or buy some at the local butcher shops.
2. Mykonos Food – Ksinotiro
Ksinotiro or else Ksinotiri will remind you of the famous greek cheese feta, except it’s much sourer in taste and rougher in texture. The local producers follow a certain procedure according to which the cheese will be left under the sun for many more days to dry, compared to other well-known types of cheese, such as Kopanisti. Due to its rough texture, it is an ideal cheese for pasta. Do not forget to combine this fruity and palatable cheese with the well known greek spirits of Ouzo or Tsipouro, as they make a perfect match!
3. Mykonos Food – Kremidopita
As you may already know, there are so many types of pie that one can savour in Greece, both sweet and salty. Kremidopita (onion pie) is an age-old tradition. Many Greek housewives of Mykonos make their own pastry leaves to ensure the pies’ authentic taste. Kremidopita is one of the greatest Mykonos delicacies, served both in gourmet restaurants and traditional Greek taverns. The fresh leaves sprinkled with virgin olive oil and the sweet onions are the basic ingredient of the pie. Also, a specific type of Mykonos cheese called Trivoli is added together, with a mix of local spices and herbs such as dill, creating a superb mixture of flavours. Unlike other areas in Greece, the local recipe is based only on 2 thick pastry leaves wrapping the filling. The crispy exterior contrasts the creaminess perfectly. Should local offer you a slice of onion pie, probably as a gesture of Greek hospitality, don’t miss the chance to taste it!
4. Mykonos Food – Kopanisti
A distinguished cheese like Kopanisti couldn’t possibly miss from the top Mykonos food list. Kopanisti is one of the three types of cheeses being made in Mykonos and it is often referred to as the ‘‘Greek Roquefort’’. Although you may find it in almost every Greek island, only the islands of Mykonos, Tinos and Syros are known to have “the authentic recipe”. After tasting it, you will understand why kopanisti can compete with top European cheeses, considering its rich flavour, texture and aroma! Kopanisti can also be a great side table cheese that you can perfectly pair with every type of food, be it seafood, meat or even vegetarian dishes. It is traditionally made from raw cow or goat milk – or a mix of goat, cow and sheep milk – through the process of fermentation. The maturity process can take up to 4 months. Kopanisti has a thick and creamy texture alongside a peppery and tangy flavour which is rather intense. Spreading Kopanisti on a wet rusk with olive oil, oregano and tomatoes, makes for the perfect light snack!
5. Mykonos Food – Kalathaki or Almond Cake
Next on our best Mykonian food list is Kalathaki: a delicious almond cake. Almond cakes and marzipans are a long-lasting tradition of the Aegean islands and there is a good reason for that. All these islands are pretty dry and the land is rather difficult to cultivate, so locals had to combine simple ingredients in order to create their everyday desserts! Ingredients like eggs, butter, almonds, walnuts, cinnamon, are the basis of Kalathaki. Although one might not be impressed with the variety of ingredients, the end result offers rich flavour and an incredible smell. These types of cakes are often called ‘‘Sunday sweets’’ and you will find them in bakeries and pastry shops on the island.
6. Mykonos Food – Sausages
Mykonos cuisine is also known for its amazing sausages which have a unique taste. We are talking about a mouth-watering greek meze with a rich flavour that one can’t forget. These sausages are made from fatty pork meat and a mixture of local spices, salt, pepper and nicely chopped oregano. The sausages are then sun-dried for many days and this is what differentiates them from the smoked ones. It’s a good idea to mix them with Mykonos’ black-eyed peas and any kind of local cheese. Red wine would be an ideal supplement for an extraordinary culinary experience.
7. Mykonos Food – Amygdalota
Let’s proceed to the second sweet option on our list. Made of grated almonds, Amygdalota are very special sweets with a distinct oblong shape. They are baked with almond oil and are covered with powdered sugar to take their final form. Amygdalota is the most common sweet which is offered in local festivals and other public celebrations.
8. Mykonos Food – Mostra
The word ‘‘mostra’’ used to be a measurement unit for rusks, in Mykonian dialect. Today, it is without any doubt the most popular and, at the same time, rather simple tapas dish in Mykonos. You can easily prepare mostra in the following way: just grab a barley rusk sprinkled with olive oil, spread a fair quantity of Kopanisti cheese, add slices of tomato with oregano, some capers on top and you are done! The spicy flavour of Kopanisti is perfectly balanced with the sweetness of the tomato, creating a superb side dish for every meal.