8 TRADITIONAL CUISINE YOU MUST TRY
Mediterranean food is adored worldwide. The cuisine is widely praised for its healthy fats and prevention of cardiovascular disease, with plenty of minimally processed meats, healthy oils, fresh vegetables, and herbs and spices. Mediterranean recipes are so popular that they are now recreated in most corners of the world. However, they stem from three culinary regions; Southern Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East.
The 8 Traditional Mediterranean Dishes are listed below.
Although the best Mediterranean recipes have undergone adaptation and globalisation, we’ll focus on their most authentic forms. This guide will cover the top traditional Mediterranean recipes you must try, whether you want to try replicating a dish at home or are planning to travel to the Mediterranean region.
1. Greek Salad, Aka Horiatiki
Greek food is one of the most well-known Mediterranean cuisines, and Greek salad is a traditional Mediterranean dish. With its vibrant ingredients and delectable sprinkling of extra virgin olive oil, it is the ideal salad for summer. Cucumber, tomato, onion, and black olives are frequently chopped, and either crumbled feta cheese or a thick slice of feta cheese is frequently positioned on top of the remaining salad ingredients. The extra virgin olive oil balances the onion’s acidity, and oregano may be be sprinkled on top for scent and flavour.
It’s unclear exactly when the Greek salad was created. Tavern owners in Plaka developed the salad that we know and adore today between 1960 and 1970. The recipe has, however, been modified and utilised for centuries. Since the time of Ancient Greece, olive trees have been grown in Greece, making it one of the top producers of olives worldwide. Fresh vegetables and olives can be grown all year long in the Mediterranean climate.A Greek salad can be easily found in a neighbourhood cafe or restaurant if you visit Greece. It is also a fantastic, easy dish to make at home.
2. Margherita pizza
There is little need to introduce the Margherita pizza. Pizza is considered to be a bit of an Italian national cuisine, which is appropriate given that it was made in 1889 as a patriotic tribute to Queen Margherita. Even the three toppings—white mozzarella, green basil, and red tomato—represent the colours of the Italian flag. Without a doubt, one of the most recognisable foods throughout the Mediterranean region is the Margherita pizza.
In the Mediterranean, Margherita pizza is served whole and is eaten with a knife and fork. However, the Margherita pizza and its eating manners have been changed globally, so this will vary depending on where you taste the dish. This is true of most well-known Mediterranean cuisines. A successful combo is the ooey cheese and crispy dough. Wherever you go, it won’t be hard to try a Margherita pizza.
3. Moroccan Tagine
The comforting, hearty cuisine you need after a hard day is a Moroccan tagine. One of the best Mediterranean dishes for slow cooking is the Moroccan tagine, which is prepared slowly in a conical-shaped dish over a smouldering fire. The tagine is typically a meat meal made with bits of lamb or chicken. Vegetable tagines, on the other hand, use components like potatoes, carrots, and onions. Spices including cumin, paprika, and turmeric are used to flavour the ingredients while they are cooked in a thick, paste-like broth.
There is substantial debate over whether the tagine originated in North Africa, specifically in Morocco, or whether it was created in the Islamic empire in the eighth century. In either case, it is a staple dish and one of the most well-known Mediterranean cuisines. In Morocco, the form of tagine that we are familiar with has been carved and shaped over many years.
Speaking about essentials for a Mediterranean diet, moussaka is a delectable meal made with eggplant that is a mainstay of contemporary Mediterranean cooking. With a thick layer of bechamel sauce on top, it somewhat resembles lasagna. It is often said that it is a Greek adaptation of lasagna. Even though this is not historically accurate, it is a useful contrast to help you visualise the food. Instead of using spaghetti sheets, moussaka layers potatoes or eggplant, sandwiching a rich tomato sauce and frequently ground lamb between each layer. The ultimate in comfort food, moussaka is ideal for a filling supper.
Although the precise era of creation is unknown, early forms of moussaka can be traced to the 13th century. Today’s moussaka is a Greek adaptation of an Arabic meal that was probably originally an Arabic eggplant stew. Since its inception, the dish has undergone many changes. Naturally, you can now find moussaka in Greece, Turkey, and other Middle Eastern Mediterranean nations. The dish is also relatively simple to recreate at home .
5. Armenian Losh
Half ground lamb and half ground beef make up Armenian losh. Finely sliced white onion, herbs, spices, and fresh herbs like parsley are all combined with the meat. Armenian losh, which is formed into little balls, can be consumed as burgers or as a kebab. The miniature pork patties are grilled after which they are served with rice pilaf and a salad dressed in olive oil. Onions may also be found fried and offered as a side dish. You should taste Armenian losh if you like barbeque or street food.
Although the origins of Armenian losh are unknown, the recipe has been around for a very long time in many versions. The Mediterranean diet is known for its use of meat and herbs, and Armenian losh prepared in the kebab style is very common throughout the Eastern Mediterranean.
Gyros are loved by all. The tzatziki sauce on pita sandwiches is one of the most popular Mediterranean dishes and a favourite street snack in many cities. Gyros are typically meat dishes made with pieces of roasted lamb, beef, or chicken. There are also vegetarian options available, most of which substitute feta or halloumi cheese for beef. For beef and vegetarian choices, include tomato, onion, fried potatoes, and the essential tzatziki sauce. The outcome is exquisite, and the tzatziki gives a zingy, mellow flavour to counteract the jumble of other ingredients.
The influx of immigrants into Greece in 1922 is said to have given rise to the gyro that we know and love today. But the recipe has been around for ages in different versions. It is closely similar to the 18th- or 19th-century invention known as shawarma.
Middle Eastern cuisine called tabouli is renowned for its powerful, mouthwatering tastes. The rich salad consists of tomatoes, bulgur wheat, mint, and finely chopped fresh parsley. It is dressed with lemon juice and olive oil. It is one of the best whole grain recipes and is frequently consumed as a mezze dish. However, tabouli with pita bread is a complete meal.
A staple salad in the Eastern Mediterranean diet, tabouli has its roots in Lebanon and Syria. The Middle Ages may be where tabouli first appeared, according to scholars who have studied the dish for a long period. The dish is flavorful and quickly became well-known for its zesty flavour and health advantages. Although you can make the salad at home, the ideal way to try it is to go to Lebanon or a nearby restaurant. Fortunately, you won’t need to look very far because Lebanese food has gained enormous popularity all around the world.
8. Black Eyed Peas Salad
Black-eyed peas are a legume, not a pea, to start. The little beans are enormously well-liked in Mediterranean cuisine and have a black dot that gives them their name. Black-eyed peas are used in a small number of dishes. But black-eyed pea salad remains the most typical dish from the Mediterranean region. Cucumber dice, tomato finely chopped, cooked and drained black-eyed peas, pomegranate, thinly sliced onion, and mint leaves make up the salad. Some recipes also call for feta cheese as an added bonus.
Black-eyed peas are a type of cowpea that are indigenous to Africa. Since the Middle Ages, people have consumed beans. They are a traditional Mediterranean cuisine that is now utilised in various meals all over the world.