Greek food to try on a Sailing Holiday in Kefalonia
Posted: 2nd July 2019
We do love all the action on the water but no sailing holiday to Kefalonia would be complete without that lovely Mediterranean food. Greece has its own unique food culture, and there are loads of dishes and delicacies that our BeyondBeach guests absolutely love. Lixouri Bay and Stira Bay both employ local Greek chefs, who produce meals using fresh local ingredients in season.
Our Beach Clubs and our Learn To Sail yacht base are very close to the lovely little town of Lixouri, and our guests enjoy locally produced food in the main square or at one of the many tavernas scattered around the town. Our Flotilla holiday guests have the choice of quay-side tavernas at a different port each evening, and get to sample some regional dishes unique to each Ionian island they visit.
Through this blog post, we’ll chat about some of our favourite Greek food, from light lunchtime mezze to classic dishes that bring the family together and are perfect for your sailing holiday in Kefalonia!
Greek olives are divine and you’ll see olive groves dotted everywhere around Kefalonia island and at both our Beach Clubs. Unique to Greece is the Kalamata olive, small in size and almond shaped. They are named after the southern Greek city of Kalamata, where they are grown and are picked by hand to avoid bruising their skin. Cured in salt brine, olive oil and vinegar they have a light and fruity flavour.
Mezze & Dips
In Kefalonia, a meze is a small dish that is served with ouzo or raki ( a local tipple ). Nowadays, you can find them in numerous cafes and tavernas where locals enjoy a selection of mezes to share as lunch or dinner.
To go with your mezze, add some tzatziki, the classic yoghurt dip, with a refreshing flavour of cucumber and garlic.
There’s also Baba Ganoush or grilled aubergine. It has its origins in the Middle East but is a firm Greek favourite. Finally, add some Taramasalata to your mezze platter. It might not sound appetising as it’s base ingredient is fish roe, however, it is delicious and well worth trying (you’ll find it on the menu at both our Beach Clubs).
No mezze is complete without some freshly made pita bread to scoop up those lovely flavours and lots of lemon juice drizzled over everything.
This is the dish that everyone has heard of. Layers of lamb and sautéed aubergine drizzled with tomato sauce, onion, garlic and a mix of spices, topped with a light béchamel cheese sauce. This is a real family dish and is often on the menu as an inclusive evening meal option at Lixouri Bay and Stira Bay beach club.
Seafood & octopus
The Ionian islands of Greece have an abundance of freshly caught seafood. If you’re up early head to the town square in Lixouri, grab an iced coffee and wander along the quayside to see all the little fishing boats bringing in their bounty.
Most people have tried calamari, deep fried and served with a slice of lemon. The Greek’s also love grilled Octopus. This simple dish is rich in flavour as the octopus is left to steep in balsamic vinegar, olive oil and herbs before being grilled, preferably on a BBQ, and drizzled with lemon juice… delicious!
The Greeks also love their grilled meats on an open charcoal fire. Souvlaki Pita is Greek fast food. Bitesize pieces or lamb, chicken or pork are skewered and grilled, then wrapped in pita bread with chopped tomato, onions, chips and lots of tzatziki. You’ll find tavernas and cafes all over Kefalonia serving all sorts of varieties of Souvalaki. It’s a staff favourite.
A Greek salad is the perfect summer lunch after a morning sailing in the sunshine. Fresh green leaves with tomatoes and onions, peppers, cucumber and capers mixed with local Greek olives and of course a slab of Feta on top. Add a light dressing and some locally baked bread to soak up the juices and it doesn’t get much better than that..
Baklava is also found all over the place. Another Middle Eastern dish, the Greeks have made it their own. Filo pastry is wrapped around a mix of ground nuts and honey. It’s deliciously sweet but just too good to miss.
For something even sweeter and more satisfying, try Galaktoboureko. Similar to Baklava but mad with filo pastry. The filling, however, is a sweet semolina custard that will satisfy even the sweetest tooth! The pastry is traditionally drizzled with a sweet sauce too, a fruit flavoured sauce can compliment the custard as well.