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Street Food on Paxos

The Greek island of Paxos is a paradise in many respects, one of them being its culinary delights. However, if you don’t have time for –or don’t feel like– sitting down at a restaurant and waiting for your food to arrive, there are alternatives.

In this article, we help you get familiar with Greek snacks. The Greek cuisine is perfect for quick bites that you can enjoy anywhere: not only on the street but also in nature, for example on the beach or while hiking the olive groves and goat trails of this lovely little island in the Ionian Sea.

Where to get street food on Paxos

When you think of street food, what comes to mind? Chances are that you imagine yourself ordering sandwiches or wraps at food trucks and market stalls. However, Paxos is so small that there is little food sell directly on the street. This doesn’t mean that there is no street food – it is simply serving at terraces by the water or by the side of the road. Taking food out is also an option.

That isn’t to say there are zero stalls. When the Paxos Music Festival is held, food and drinks stalls pop up close to the performances. By the side of the main roads that cross the island, you may farmers selling their fruit and vegetables. In the towns, tavernas are the go-to spots for street food on Paxos. Sometimes you can even find takeaway food at supermarkets or bakeries.

Since most towns on Paxos are on the island’s coast, there are opportunities for you to enjoy your street food in a picturesque environment. Nothing beats eating a pita gyros by the harbour, watching the fishermen repair their nets and paint their boats. Alternatively, you can order food from a beach bar and enjoy it on one of their sunloungers, or on your own towel right on the beach.

Read More: Top 5 Traditional Greek Dishes

Delicious Greek food to try on Paxos

When on Paxos, you have a unique opportunity to try authentic Greek street food that you wouldn’t normally find in your city or even country. Some dishes never make it across the Greek border, while some are local specialities that are even hard to find outside of the Ionian region.

Gyros

One of the most popular and well-known Greek street foods is gyros. Usually serves in pita bread with French fries and vegetables such as lettuce, onion, and tomato, gyros are slices of meat that is cook on –and subsequently shave from– a vertical spit. You can usually choose from pork and chicken. Topped with a tzatziki sauce, this is a delicious Greek classic that is healthy and cheap at the same time.

Legend has it that in the times of Alexander the Great, his soldiers skewered meat on their swords and roasted it over a fire. The word gheereezo means ‘to turn’ in Greek.

Souvlaki

Souvlaki is dicing meat that is grilling on a skewer. This can be lamb, pork, beef, or chicken. It is then serving with rice and/or French fries and a salad. Unlike gyros, souvlaki is not serving in bread but on a plate, making it the kind of street food that requires you to sit down.

In ancient times, souvlaki was called kandaulos and did include bread and cheese. The name souvlaki is a diminutive of the Greek word souvla, which means skewer.

Spanakopita

This spinach pie contains, apart from the obvious ingredient, feta cheese, lemon juice, and dill, wrapped in a buttery phyllo pastry. It can eat as an appetizer or a snack. For those on a diet, it could even serve as a light meal. You can buy these at a local bakery or supermarket, but you will also find them on the menu of most restaurants.

It is thought that this dish originates during the Turkish occupation of Greece, around 400 years ago. In Turkish cuisine, there is an almost identical dish that is called ispanaki. These pies were perfect for the farmers on Paxos, that would carry them in their pockets and eat them in the shade of an olive tree.

Kreatopita

Here’s another pita for you: kreatopita is a meat pie in that same flaky phyllo pastry that uses for the spanakopita. Kreatopita contains ground meat –usually beef or lamb– and may combine with rice, leeks, or feta cheese. Just like its vegetarian relative, kreatopita can eat as a starter or a light meal. It is also perfect as a quick grab-and-go snack.

Pastitsio

This baked pasta dish originated in the Ionian region, to which Paxos belongs. It is consists of layers of pasta, meat, and béchamel sauce. Yes, this is a true calorie bomb, so it’s great for days on which you need a lot of energy. For example when hiking the hills of Paxos or practising watersports.

Read More: Where to eat and drink on Paxos?

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