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Leros Title
Food of Leros
Food Glorious Food! Yup Leros has some amazing food, believe it or not it even has a Guava type of tree that is not found anywere else in Greece. Here I will list my favourite food items from Leros and I hope that you are lucky enough to taste some when you get there...
Gavafes of Leros First on my list:

GAVAFES, this fruit is found ONLY on the island of Leros, I have been told that it simply will not grow anywere else in Greece! I must put this to the test one day, but my research so far tells me that the closest place I could find a similar type of fruit is in Egypt. I have tasted Guava in my travels in Asia but I must say that the perfume, flavours and texture of this fruit are simply amazing! On the left you see a picture of some Gavafes in my father's garden.

Mytzithra cheese of Leros
My second favorite food item from Leros is MYTZITHRA, its a cheese made with the addition of sea water so its quite salty and it is meant to be used on top of pasta but can be eaten on its own especially when its fresh. I can only compare the taste to parmezan only 5 times stronger flavour! Get ready for an explosion of your taste buds. On the left a picture of my very own Mytzithra sent to me by my mother. Note the tomato and basil are grown in my very own little (very little) garden.
We continue our culinary Lerian trip with: PASTO PSARI (sea salt cured fish) now preferably you can get PASTO KOLIO which is Mackerel cured in natural unprocessed sea salt gathered from the sourounding small islands like Agia Kyriaki or Piganousa. Fishermen of Leros all pass this recipe from father down to son, but very few are experts in producing the perfect PASTO. The picture on the right is from the PASTA PSARIA of Dimitris, his own batch which actually came out very good! The fish as seen on the picture would need to be washed then served with a drizle of olive oil! The perfect escort to a well cooked Fasolatha the national dish of Greece.
Pasta Psaria
Honey from Leros Honey from Leros is another food item you may want to look out for. I buy mine from Kamara, but you can check the supermarkets in Alinta or Platanos, last time I checked they were stocking some Lerian honey. If you manage to track down the honey makers themselves you may also be able to buy the KYRITHRA also. Kyrithra is the Honey Comb and I always found that the honey tastes better when i eat it staright from the honey comb but perhaps its just my imagination.
Other food items from Leros you want to look out for:

Pougkakia: This is a type of dessert offered mainly in weddings. Made with almonds, sugar and bitter almonds.

Svigkoi: This can be confused with Loukoumades but the Lerian recipe produces far softer uniquely textured desserts. The secret is in the fact that egg is the main ingredient and a lot of beating? I will try to find a recipe.

Kserotiana : Flour, olive oil and water are the main ingridients for the dow of kserotiana.

Koukouvades: An easter type of bread, this recipe can take up to two days if properly done.

Favatopitakia: Made from fava beans, finely choped onions , flour herbs and seasoning.

Fouskes (this one is also a dish from Kalymnos): This seafood item is some kind of weird clam it looks dark from the outside and can be cut with a knife, revealing the bright yellow and orange flesh that I find irresistable, having said that I asked some of my English friends to try it and they hated I guess its an aquired taste. Kalimnos fishermen clean the Fouskes and bottlethem in sea water that keeps the fouskes flesh for quite a while, this is called SPINIALO. My little moto is "SPINIALO thelo ki ALLO" meaning I want more spinialo.

Pines: Giant sea clams, can be eaten raw or cooked, excellent with some onion sauce!

Axinous (sea urchins): Yup sea urchins you read it correctly, a pain to open them but once you do, you get to the tiny portion of caviar textured food which has an orange yellow color, and tastes of a marvelous salty/sweet mediteranean adventure.

Kalognomes: I might be wrong saying that these sea shells must be similar to mussels, but a sweter taste and harder texture.

Of course you must try the Fresh fish wich can be fond in any of the tavernas, and aslo when you buy Kalamari make sure to ask if its fresh, its hard to find fresh kalamari in tavernas because the quantity caught can never satisfy demand, but at least knowing its not fresh you can anticipate the time you actually find some really fresh kalamari. The majority you get in tavernas is NOT fresh but if you actually manage to find some squid caught of Leros shores you will instantly know the difference.

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