We wanted to devote this post to celebrate one of the finest, but often overlooked, gastronomic experiences, Greek breakfast.
Most tourists in Greece come prepared for the incredible meats, seafoods and produce that make Greek cooking legendary around the world—and a dinner in a local Greek taverna an unforgettable experience. But few know what foods to expect (and, more important, what to seek out) in the morning. Here’s everything you should know:
Coffee – The most important part of any Greek breakfast. Strong, traditional Greek coffee is boiled over an open flame in a metal pot and sweetened to your liking. In the summer, though, Greeks often prefer cooler options. Try a fredo-cappuccino or fredo-espresso to beat the heat, or a frappé, the ubiquitous summer eye-opener made from instant coffee.
Yogurt – The whole world seems to have fallen in love with Greek yogurt, and that’s not a surprise; it is as healthy as it is delicious. No Greek breakfast is complete without a small bowl of yogurt, topped off with some local honey, grains or fruit.
Fresh Fruit – Greece is one of the world’s most fertile agricultural regions, and fresh fruits are abundant year round. Strawberries, peaches, cherries, melons, citrus fruits, apricots,apples and grapes are just a few of the locally grown fruits that accompany Greek breakfasts. Look for an array of exquisite local jams, jellies and marmalades as well.
Pitas – Pitas, or pies, are perhaps the most popular breakfast food for Greeks on the go. Found in every corner café and snack bar, Spanakopita (spinach pie) and tiropita (cheese pie) are the two most common. Note that there are two main types of pita to choose from, one with layers of crispy phyllo dough on top, and one with a more solid pastry crust. Which one’s better? You’ll have to try both to see (purely in the name of cultural discovery, of course)!
Koulouri – A very traditional addition to the breakfast menu, a koulouri is a light, round ring of bread (slightly bigger than a bagel) covered with sesame seeds. You can also find them stuffed with cheese. Available from every bakery and from vendors on the streets for about fifty cents, these are the perfect portable morning snack as you venture out to explore the wonders of Greece!
Want to learn more about Greek food? Join us on one of our tours and get a taste of everything Greece has to offer.