Peloponnese food and the impactful flavours of the region will seduce your palate. The local produce is primarily used as part of sustainable ecotourism practices, distributed amongst local businesses before onward sale to other parts of Greece and abroad. So you are sure to be savouring the absolute best and freshest ingredients that Peloponnese food has to offer.
Peloponnese food: local products
Peloponnese is renowned for three major commodities that are associated with PDO status; the olives of Kalamata, the oranges of Argolida and the eggplants of Tsakonia. The fertile soil, together with the ideal Mediterranean climate, produces raw materials of exquisite quality. The olives are fleshy, the oranges are juicy and the eggplants are delicate.
The local delicacies that should be sought out and tried during your visit to the Peloponnese are the various kinds of pasta; Trahanas, made from wheat and fermented milk, and Hilopites, a special kind of egg pasta. Horta, wild greens that are handpicked are popular, as they are around the whole of Greece, served boiled with freshly squeezed lemon and extra virgin olive oil. Smoked and cured meats of the Peloponnese are famous, mostly Syglino which is like a ham type made of pork. The fragrant Maniot sausage is also a local favourite, infused with citrus hints. As for the local cheeses, Sfela is unique to the Peloponnese, originating in Messenia, while the dry Myzithra and Kefalotyri is mostly used grated, topping various dishes either prior to or after cooking.
Peloponnese food: local dishes
Peloponnese food is all about the moreish recipes that bring together the wealth of the land, the tradition and culture of the region, all wrapped up in dishes that can only be characterised as Greek soul food. Here are some of the region’s must try dishes.
A vegetarian dish made up of only two ingredients, eggs and fresh tomatoes. It is essentially a kind of scrambled eggs, that can be eaten throughout the day as a main or as a sharing dish.
A Messenian fish dish usually made using cod combined mostly with tomatoes, including paste, sun-dried and cherry, as well as black raisins and balsamic vinegar, for that extra punch in flavour.
Trahanas acts as a wholesome base, topped with various combinations from beef and goat, to vegetarian versions with the famous eggplants of the area or even chickpeas.
like Trahana dishes, you can find many variations. The most popular is the Rooster in red wine sauce. In Kalamata, they use the local eggplants as the main ingredient, adding hilopites at the end so they remain light and fluffy.
the sweet lovers who visit the Peloponnese should definitely not miss trying lalagia and diples. Both use dough as their base and are served fried, however, lalagia are vegan (no animal by-products) can be made two ways, both savory and sweet by adding sugar, cinnamon and orange zest into the batter. Diples on the other hand are sweet, drizzled in honey and topped with finely chopped walnuts.
Peloponnese food experiences
if you are swept away by Peloponnese food during your visit, then you can dabble in learning the secrets of the local cuisine. Cooking classes run by local housewives show you which ingredients work well together and also give you insights about local customs. Learn to make the local pasta, and treat your friends at home with your newly acquired, tasteful skills. You can also opt for a food tour that includes olive and olive oil tasting since it is one of the most quintessential things to do especially in Messenia, home of the famous Kalamata olive.