Greek Cuisine is renowned for its use of fresh, wholesome ingredients; one of its standout ingredients is undoubtedly cheese. Greece has a rich cheese-making tradition that dates back thousands of years, and today, there are over 60 varieties of Greek cheese.
In this article, we’ll discuss the top 10 Greek kinds of cheese, their unique flavors, textures, and their usage in cooking. Let’s dig in.
Top 10 Best Greek Cheeses and Their Ingredients
Greece is well known for its rich and diverse culinary history. Cheese is a major staple of Greek Cuisine, and the country boasts a range of unique, delicious varieties.
Here are the top ten Greek kinds of cheese:
Feta is arguably the most famous of all Greek cheeses and has been a staple of Greek Cuisine for thousands of years. This cheese is primarily made from sheep’s milk; however, goat’s milk can also be used.
Feta cheese has a crumbly texture and a white, slightly yellowish color. Its flavor is salty and tangy, with a slightly sour note that gives it a unique and distinctive taste.
Feta cheese is mostly used in a variety of dishes. It is a major ingredient in Greek salads and is often used as a topping for pizzas and flatbreads. It also pairs well with olives, tomatoes, vegetables, or grilled meats.
Furthermore, it can also be used in dips and spreads, such as tzatziki and other fried meals.
Graviera is a type of Greek cheese produced from sheep’s milk, goat’s milk, or a mixture of the two. It has a unique flavor with a slightly nutty, buttery taste. It is often used in appetizers, salads, and traditional Greek dishes like Saganaki, a fried cheese dish.
Furthermore, Graviera is an ingredient in many Greek pastries, such as spanakopita and tiropita, as well as in Cypriot dishes like Souvla.
In terms of texture, Graviera is a hard cheese with a straw-yellow color, and it’s made with aged cheese curds that are pressed and aged for two to six months.
Kefalotyri is a hard, salty cheese made with sheep’s or goat’s milk or a combination. It’s a firm, dense cheese with a pale yellow color and a slightly granular texture. This cheese has a texture and tastes similar to Italian Pecorino Romano cheese but with its unique flavor and aroma.
It has a sharp, tangy flavor with a distinct saltiness. It has a slightly sweet aroma with a hint of nuttiness.
Kefalotyri is very popular in making saganaki. A traditional greedy meal where the cheese is fried in olive oil until golden. It is also used in tyropita, partition (Greek casserole).
Kefalograviera is a semi-hard cheese combining two of Greece’s most popular cheeses, Kefalotyri and Graviera. It’s made from a blend of sheep and goat’s milk, with a small amount of cow’s milk added for creaminess.
This cheese is produced in various parts of Greece, and its exact flavor and texture may vary depending on the production methods and aging time. However, it has a firm, dense texture with small, irregular holes. It has a rich and complex taste that combines the kefalotyri’s sharpness with Graviera’s creaminess.
Kefalograviera is commonly used in pasta dishes, pizzas, and casseroles. It is also used in many traditional dishes, including saganaki (fried cheese), tyropita (cheese pie), and moussaka (an eggplant and meat casserole).
Anthotyro is a traditional Greek cheese with a unique flavor from sheep’s and goat’s milk. It is a white cheese with a creamy texture, slightly acidic in taste, and mild sweetness. The name “anthotyro” means “flower cheese” in Greek.
Anthotyro is often served as an appetizer or dessert and is a key ingredient in Greek salads and pastries, such as spanakopita. It can also be spread on bread or crackers and is used to enhance the flavor of sauces and soups.
In addition, it is often used to stuff vegetables or as a topping on pizzas. Anthotyro is a great calcium, protein, phosphorus, and Vitamin B source. It is an essential element of the Mediterranean diet and is enjoyed by all.
Mizithra is another Greek cheese that makes it to our top 10 list. This cheese originated from the Isle of Crete and is made by sheep, goats, or a combination.
Its unique flavor is salty and tangy and pairs well with fresh fruit. It is often used as a topping for pasta, salads, and soups. Its texture is quite crumbly, which makes it an excellent ingredient for sauces and spreads.
This cheese is ideal for grilling and roasting, as it melts easily and has a pleasant aroma. Additionally, it is an excellent addition to baked goods like pies, pastries, and bread.
Manouri is made from the whey of leftovers from feta cheese production. It’s a soft, creamy cheese with a mild, slightly tangy flavor and a texture similar to that of ricotta or cream cheese.
It can be consumed as a table cheese or used in cooking. It’s great for frying, baking, or grilling and for use in salads and other traditional dishes.
Metsovone is a yummy cheese from Greece that’s made from cow’s milk (or sometimes a mix of cow’s and sheep’s milk). It has a firm texture that’s a bit like gouda or mozzarella.
People in Greece love to eat metsovone cheese with bread, olives, and other snacks. You can also melt it over grilled veggies or meat or put it on top of pizza or pies.
Kasseri is a Greek delight. It’s a semi-soft cheese made from a blend of sheep’s and goat’s milk (and sometimes cow’s milk). This cheese has a buttery flavor with a little tangy, smooth, and firm texture that melts easily.
In Greece, kasseri cheese is a versatile ingredient in various dishes. It pairs nicely with meats and veggies. Kasseri is also popular I making saganaki and spanakopita.
Halloumi is a semi-hard, brine cheese from Cyprus, a Greek Island. It is made from a mixture of goat’s and sheep’s milk. Halloumi is known for its unique flavor and texture, having a slightly springy constituency and a salty taste.
One of the most unique features of halloumi cheese is its ability to be grilled or fried without melting. This makes it a popular ingredient in most cuisine, often used in salads, sandwiches, and as a meat substitute in vegetarian foods.
Halloumi is a very versatile cheese often used as a substitute for mozzarella or feta in dishes.
Greek cheese making is an art form passed down through generations, and the top 10 Greek kinds of cheese highlighted in the article represent some of the finest cheeses in Greek.
The World of Greek cheese is rich and diverse, offering various flavors, textures, and culinary uses. From the tangy, crumbly goodness of feta to the creamy, indulgent manouri, and the smoky, complex flavors of metsovone, each cheese has its unique flavour and texture.