Sifnos – not the island for weight watches or the weak willed!
Restaurants, fish-tavernas, pastry shops, and ouzo serving tavernas, can be found in every one of the major villages of Sifnos and some can be found in hidden away places that you’d least expect. One possible reason for this is that Sifnos is the birth place of many great cooks, such as Tselementes and Markou.
A small sample of the delicious traditional Sifnian cuisine and products to tempt the palate include:
Revicokeftedes – chickpea balls.
Manoura – a cream cheese.
Mizithra – a skimmed milk cheese.
Abelofasoula me Skordalia – Green beans with garlic
Revithia – Oven baked chickpeas (recipe details below)
Kaparosalata – a caper salad
Mastelo – Oven baked meat lamb.
Sifnos also has a long tradition of confectioners. The island is particularly well know for its production of macaroons, marzipan cakes, nougat with honey, and my particular favourites are the sesame sweets and the kouloures – doughnut shaped biscuits with sesame seeds.
½ kilo revithia (chickpeas)
1 teaspoonful of salt
2 big onions
1 cup of olive oil
1½ litres water
Soak the revithia overnight with most of the salt.
In the morning rinse the revithia very well and place in a skepastaria (a Sifnian earthenware pot specifically for cooking revithia in the oven).
Chop the onions in long thin slices and add to pot. Add the oil. Add a little salt and water to roughly 4 fingers above the level of the rivithia. Cover with a lid.
Preferably place in a traditional wood burning oven and allow to simmer slowly over night. In the morning its ready to eat.
This dish is traditionally cooked over a Saturday night in order for the housewife to be free to go to church on Sunday morning. When she returns from church she simply takes the revithia from the oven and lunch is served