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Greek sweets

Greek traditional sweets are made following the principles of Mediterranean diet, they are simple to prepare and are based on fresh ingredients such as fruit, honey, nuts and sesame paste, grape molasses and virgin olive oil.
These mouthwatering temptations, so hard to resist, highly nutritious and healthy will satisfy your need for a sweet without too many calories weighing down on your conscience!

Sweet gold

Honey has been the oldest sweetener in Greek diet. It is a precious basic ingredient in Greek gastronomy and it has been used in endless combinations by confectioners and cooks alike. The great variety of sweets based on honey showcases its value in the culinary history of the Aegean Sea Islands: honey pies, diples [fried thin pastry with honey], pasteli [sesame and honey bar], loukoumades [fried dough with honey], sweet cheese pies with honey, melekounia [a sweet made in Rhodes] and spoon sweets.
Our suggestion: enjoy honey as a topping on yogurt, on fluffy loukoumades, on almond baklava or in a savoury honey pie.

 

    

Fruity temptations

Greek earth produces fruit that are used as basic ingredients in a variety of sweets and preserves. Dried fruits are among the healthiest & most nutritious options and they are the best alternative to sugar based processed foods. Raisins, figs, apricots and prunes are high in the list of popular foods in Greece as well as abroad.

  

Fruit can be used to make spoon sweets which you can either enjoy on their own or as a topping on strained yogurt any time of the day. Taste preserves of green bitter orange, fig, quince, grape, rolled bitter orange, bergamot, shaddock, strawberry, sour cherry, cherry, watermelon, tangerine, kumquat (in Corfu) and many more. Apart from fruit, vegetables can also be used to make spoon sweets, such as baby eggplant, cherry tomato, and pumpkin; try also those made from fresh or unripe nuts such as walnut, chestnut etc.
Our suggestion
: try lemon flowers from Chios Island and rose petals from St. George’s Monastery by Lake Doxa, Feneos, Korinthia.

Sesame

It is the basic ingredient of many traditional sweets, and tahini (sesame paste) is well-known for its high nutritional value. It is used to make halva (in Northern Greece) as well as in a number of sweet confections eaten during the Lent period in Greece, such as sesame paste biscuits, sesame pie etc.

 

     

Sweets made in the islands

During your stay on a Greek island and next to enjoying their amazing beaches and trails, you must definitely try the various local sweet delicacies. The most famous ones are amygdalota [almond confections] from Spetses, Hydra and Andros Islands, while Syros and Chios Islands are known for their loukoumia. Their aroma and velvety texture leave a lingering wonderful aftertaste. They come in a variety of delicious flavours such as rose, ouzo and lemon, the classic ones being rose water and mastic. In Crete, try skaltsounia and xerotigano, in Santorini taste melitinia, in Rhodes melekounia, in Anafi mouthwatering koufeto, in Syros halvadopita, and in the Ionian Islands mantolato.

Sweet temptations from the mainland

Crisp, buttered thin pastry sheets, roasted nuts and fragrant syrup: these are the basic ingredients for preparing sweet dishes that originate from Eastern Mediterranean countries and boast a centuries-old history. Try kantaifi, baklava, galaktoboureko, roxakia from Macedonia, ravani, samali, gianniotiko, klostari from Epirus, bourekia, trigona panoramatos, saragli, ekmek, walnut pie, yogurt pie and so many more…
Our suggestion:
Enjoy them while sipping a Greek coffee slowly brewed on hot sand, sided by a vanilla ice cream.

A spoonful of sweet paste in water!

For Greeks, one of the most popular traditional summertime desserts is ypovrychio, a sweet treat with a rich soft texture that fills the mouth with a lovely natural aroma. Classic flavours are vanilla and mastic but you can also try other flavours such as rose, bitter almond or pistachio. The particular aroma, great taste and velvety texture of ypovrychio served inside a glass of ice cold water will cool you off during those hot summer afternoons!

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