Seeing as we’re still not travelling as frequently as we used to, it’s safe to say that we’re going to continue exploring the world through food. One nation that’s not talked about nearly as much as it should be is Cyprus. In case you flunked geography, Cyprus is an island nation neatly situated south of Turkey in the eastern Mediterranean Sea. Cypriot cuisine takes influence from Greek food but with a unique Middle Eastern flair.
Are we making you hungry yet? Keep reading for just a few foods from Cyprus you need to try!
See also: All The Desserts You Have To Try When You’re In Turkey >>>
Perhaps the most famous food from Cyprus is Halloumi. This cheese is known around the world for its high melting point which means it can be grilled or fried without oozing all over the place. It’s delicious in salads but is also super tasty served cold alongside refreshing watermelon. Take it a step further and make halloumi fries — your friends will go nuts over them!
Similar to the Greek-style Souvlaki, Cypriot Souvla consists of chunks of flavourful charcoal-grilled meat on a skewer and a healthy portion of a fresh salad-y filling. To serve, it all goes inside a pita but this is a thinner pita than the Greeks use. In Cyprus, folks open the pita and use it as a pocket instead of wrapping the Souvlaki the Greek way.
While dolmas (stuffed grape leaves) are a favourite, a Cypriot tradition is to stuff minced meat, rice, onions, and herbs inside peppers, tomatoes, onions, and even zucchini. They’re cooked using lots of olive oil and the result is a mega flavourful filling and tender vegetables that are a pleasure to eat.
Makaronia Tou Fournou
Known in Greece as pastitsio, the Cypriot version uses, no surprise here, halloumi and its basically a delicious mac & cheese. Who wouldn’t want to tuck into a helping of layed pasta with minced meat and béchamel sauce?
Another stick-to-your-ribs main dish that’s a fave over in Cyprus is Stifado and it consists of gorgeous hunks of beef that’s slow-cooked in onions and red wine. Traditional flavourings include cinnamon sticks and cloves to give it a sweet and fragrant kick. Serve stifado with bulgar or white rice and you’ll be eating like a local!
It’s a safe bet that you’ll often find black-eyed peas in nearly every Cypriot kitchen and that’s likely to make Louvi. This healthy dish is super simple to make and it’s nice and light. It’s often served with boiled zucchini or Swiss chard, oil, salt and lemon but it can also be enjoyed as a salad with tomatoes and cucumbers. Did you know that in Cyprus, many households eat beans on Mondays and Tuesdays?