Food in Greece

Greek food is the basis of what is known to the world as Mediterranean diet. It is based on good ingredients like olive oil, fresh vegetables, good quality meat and fish and cheese. Recipes are simple, with only a few exceptions and they contain just 3 – 4 ingredients at most.

Greece’s rich history makes it clear that along with its customs, its cooking has also had influences from various other cultures whose people stayed in the country for a long period of time.

But most of all, it is the way of life that forms the local cuisine in every place in the world. Being both a coastal and mountainous country, made the Greeks develop both fishing and animal breeding to feed their communities, depending on the location.

Fishing as the main occupation in the Greek islands
Fishing as the main occupation in the Greek islands

It was the history itself that changed the habits of people in certain places, forcing them to suddenly change their way of life. In Kythnos, for example, as well as in many other islands, piracy forced people to escape to the mountains and change from a successful maritime life to farming and animal breeding. Naxos, on the other hand, was always basing its economy on its agriculture, which is why it thrived compared to the neighbouring islands.

Nowadays that piracy is no longer an active threat in the Mediterranean Sea, it is tourism that has affected the way of life and consequently the way of cooking. Fishing is an obsoltete profession and only a few old people refuse to let go of their love of the sea.

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