Cypriots like to eat well and, at meal times, they enjoy an array of dishes. Starters normally include salads and bread is dished out plentifully also. Meat is a prominent feature in the main courses, as if fish, but not as frequently. Due to its climate and so many fresh ingredients available, it is a healthy cuisine.
One of the island’s best known national dishes, or more of a meal, is known as ‘the mezze’. 25-30 small plates adorn a table when this is being served. Grilled halloumi (Cypriot goat’s cheese) with various dips is served as a starter, then other vegetable-based dishes are served before the meal finishes with meat or pork usually cooked with wine/onions which has been prepared over a number of hours.
Tourism has heavily influenced the selection of restaurants on the island, particularly in the south. With over a million tourists every year, and half of these British, steak and kidney pie and an abundance of chips with main courses are normally standard on menus. Full English breakfasts are largely advertised in resort restaurants also.
Finding restaurants to enjoy Cypriot cuisine can be difficult due to the influence of other countries. To find restaurants still serving quality national dishes instead of ‘bangers and mash’ the smaller villages around the island will need to be visited. The northern half of the island’s cuisine largely consists of Turkish based food such as kebabs.