Thu, 11 November 2021
It’s often said that there’s no better way to get to know a place than by savouring some of the food it has to offer, and we agree. The Hotel Calypso team has put together a list of its favourite traditional Gozitan foods, which are bound to tickle your taste-buds and have you asking for more.
Pastizzi – Taking flaky pastry to a whole new level
Topping our list are pastizzi, and just writing about them makes our mouth water for one of these heavenly snacks. Pastizzi are envelopes of delightfully flaky and golden pastry encasing a creamy ricotta or mushy pea filling. Sold for around 35 cents apiece, pastizzi are an ideal midday snack as they can be enjoyed on the go while you’re busy exploring the island. If you choose to eat your pastizzi at a table in one of the cafés or snack bars around the island, we recommend you wash them down with tea in a glass (yes, glass not cup!) for a truly authentic Gozitan experience.
Ftira – Humble bread that packs a punch
Another favourite snack of ours is the humble yet extremely satisfying ftira – perfect to bite into after a swim or a long walk in the Gozitan countryside. The ftira is such an important part of our cultural heritage that in 2020 it became the first local food product to be included on the prestigious UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list. But what exactly is it? Ftira is flattened Maltese bread having a thick crust and a fluffy interior, which is generally lathered with homemade tomato paste and drizzled with olive oil. The other ingredients vary from one snack bar or kiosk to another, but the most traditional fillings include local olives, capers, pickled onions, and fresh herbs. To get as local as local gets, pair your ftira with Gozo’s very own beer crafted by the Lord Chambray brewery.
Aljotta – A simple yet flavourful fish broth
Considering that Gozo is surrounded by sea, this recommendation hardly comes as a surprise! Aljotta or fish broth brings together the freshest fish, Mediterranean herbs and a base of garlic and tomatoes, which will surely go down a treat with fish lovers, especially during the cooler months.
Kusksu – A comforting bowl of melt-in-your-mouth ingredients
Kusksu is an earthy and comforting soupy dish bringing together a tomato base with bead-like pasta, fresh broad beans, and ġbejniet (fresh local cheeselets). The thing we love the most about this dish is how all the ingredients, particularly the broad beans, just melt in your mouth and have your taste-buds screaming for the next spoonful.
Stuffat tal-fenek – The stew to end all stews
What’s not to love about the star of our list – rabbit stew? Tender rabbit meat cooked in wine and tomato sauce infused with bay leaves and often accompanied by crumbly carrots, peas and potatoes. Rabbit stew is generally served with hunks of bread, which come handy in ensuring that not a morsel of divine rabbit sauce goes to waste. Don’t forget to ask for a glass of Gozitan wine from one of the island’s wineries and estates to perfectly complement your meal. Gozo might be small, but it has its own DOK label!
Mqaret – Deep-fried sweet pastry pockets
We can almost hear sweet-toothed readers complain that all of our recommendations are savoury. But relax, we’ve just saved dessert for last, and today we are having mqaret. Mqaret are deep-fried sweet pastry pockets filled with dates and spices. In restaurants, mqaret are often dusted with powedered sugar and served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side.
If you’ve worked up an appetite just by reading our recommendations, you definitely need to pay Gozo a visit for a first-hand experience of what the island has to offer. At Hotel Calypso we’re waiting to give you the warmest of welcomes and allow you to sample the best of what Gozo has to offer.
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Phone number: (+356) 2156 2000
Address: Hotel Calypso Marsalforn Bay, Marsalforn, MFN 1104, Gozo, Malta
- 24/7 Reception
- Check-In: 14:00 onwards
- Check-Out: Latest 11:00
- Full Buffet Breakfast
- Free Wi-Fi available
- Outdoor Pool (Open during the Summer Months between 08:30 and 19:00hrs)