Greek food vocabulary


anglnares—artichokes arakadhes—peas bamies—okra

dolmadhes— stuffed grape leaves tasoladha—bean soup tasolakla— snap beans

horlatlkl— olive, cheese, onion, cucumber and tomato salad

horta— steamed wild greens

koukla— horse beans


patzaria— beets

yemistes—stuffed tomatoes or peppers ylgantes— giant haricot beans


melltsanasalata—mild eggplant dip

tarama—fish roe pate, popular during Lent

tzatziki— yogurt/cucumber spread, heavily garlicked and herbed


pefeas—tripe stew; a city dish, found at special stalls near the bus stand tallngarla—snails, fried whole in oil and herbs

trahanadhes—sourdough dumplings prepared in hot sour milk; an Ipirote specialty Grilled or Fried Meat

brlzdla— pork or beef chop keltedhes— meatballs

kokoretsi— innards, specifically the gut muscle wall (not tripe) stuffed with anony­mous offal

kondosouvli—essentially same idea as foregoing, but the chunks of meat have a less humble origin

ρ«/<ό—a portion of sheep or pork spit-roasted whole—may be served cold, bones, eyes, and all.

You may learn to like the above three delicacies if summer trekking in the mountains.

paidhakia—lamb chops, often very inexpensive sikotakia—grilled liver, better than Mom’s

Baked or Boiled Meat


moussaka—eggplant and ground lamb casserole in white sauce

papoutsaki—variation of moussaka

pastitsio—macaroni pie

stifadho—stew of any kind

tsoudsoukakia—baked meat torpedoes

yiorvoulakia—meat-and-rice balls, often in egg-lemon sauce


galeos—shark steak

garidhes—shrimp, fried or blanched


gopes— small but meaty fish, common kafeneio (cafe) snack kalamaria—squid, fried ksifias—swordfish

ktapodhi— octopus, grilled or stewed pestrofa—trout sinagridha—red snapper



bira varelizmeno—beer on tap kokkinelli— rose wine krasi— wine

levko aspro—white wine mavro—red wine

meh to hilko—bulk wine, vin du pays retsina—pine-resin-flavored wine ούζο—anise-flavored liqueur raki— grape-crushing brandy tsikoudhia—Cretan raki tsipouro—I pi rote, Sterean raki nero—water


The only decadent element of Greek cuisine is the sweets. Many Levantine introductions are tasteless concoctions of sugar and flour, but several desserts are outstanding.

baklava—fyllo dough sheets, honey, nuts bougatza—Greek eclair galaktobouriko—custard pie krema— plain custard

loukoumi—Turkish delight; standard welcome snack at monasteries moustalevria—grape pudding; autumn prize in towns of grape regions rizogalo—rice pudding—world’s best

Street Snacks

kalamboki— roast corn on the cob, mainland street corner staple from July to September

kastana— roast chestnuts, sold at street stalls from October through midwinter souvlaki— chunks of pork or lamb, best served in pita bread with tomatoes and other

garnish spanakopita—spinach pie tyropita—cheese pie


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