Eating is very important to all Greeks. We enjoy good food and a meal is more than just filling up your belly, it’s a good excuse to get together around the table, connect with each other, talk, argue, share experiences and news as well as food and drink.
The cuisine of Corfu is mainly Mediterranean, having olive oil as a base, along with legumes, pastas, vegetables, fish and a lot of spices. It has several differences from Greek mainland cooking, due mainly to the influence of the Venetian occupation of about 400 years. This is revealed in the way of cooking of most foods and in the origin of the names of the dishes. Also, some particularities of the local cuisine are owed to the English people, despite their coexistence with Corfu people for only a short period of time. The most frequent way of cooking is in a saucepan, which is used more for cooking than in the rest of the country. Another way of cooking and maintaining fish and vegetables consists of a marinade of vinegar, salt, oil, rosemary and raisins, known as ‘savouro’.
The most popular dishes of Corfu are:
Pastitsada: the village version is cooked with rooster while the one from the city is cooked with veal. This dish is cooked in a saucepan with thick tomato sauce, garlic, onion, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, bay leaves, pepper and a little vinegar. It is served with thick spaghetti and is the most popular dish in Corfu.
Sofrito: thin slices of fried veal with white sauce of white wine, lots of garlic and lots of parsley.
Bourdeto: fish, usually scorpion or dogfish, cooked in a sauce of onions, tomato and hot red pepper.
Bianco: all kinds of medium and small fish and potatoes cooked in a sauce of garlic and lemon
Tsigarelli: a casserole of wild greens with lots of red hot pepper.
Tzaletia with Skordalia: pancakes of salted cod fish (bakaliaros) with very spicy garlic paste.