Messenian cuisine bears great resemblance to the cuisine of the wider Mediterranean area. The diet is based, to a great degree, on the local products and of course on the olive oil. One of the most popular, traditional summer dishes is the Rusk from Mani, which is served with sfela cheese, oregano and olive oil. Sfela cheese is one of the most special products of the local cheese-making industry. It is a white cheese with a brackish flavor, made with sheep as well as goat milk. It is worth tasting it in combination with the traditional dishes. Moreover, the so-called “lalangia” (crispy fired dough sticks) are also produced in Messenia. They originate from Mani and they are made with flour, water and olive oil. They are perfectly combined with the salty cheeses that are also produced in the area. As far as pastry-making is concerned, the Messenian cuisine has to offer the delicious “Diples” (fried sheet-like dough), which are served with honey. The local tradition has related diples with wedding celebrations.
THE PRODUCTS OF MESSENIA
The local production of Messenia is so rich and developed that has made the area known in the whole world. The basic product for which Messenia is famous is Kalamata Olives, which with a protected designation of origin reach many countries of the world. Of course, it also produces excellent olive oil, due to the olive groves that cover endless areas. The climate of the area also favors the production of figs. Apart from the jam, dried figs are also very popular, the production of which has been known for decades. Pasteli (sesame seed candy bar with honey) is also of one of the most popular candies, for which the honey of Messenian beekeepers is utilized.