Indubitably, we love our food in Malta, let’s be honest, it’s a pretty big deal. It’s really no wonder then, how our food is based on the solid foundations of passion, love and dedication, which are all key ingredients that make it the tasteful Maltese cuisine it is. Very much enthused by local foodstuffs, traditional recipes passed on from generation to generation and having parallels in tastes to neighbouring countries, our food is unique in its methods of preparation and something everyone should appreciate.
Aljotta (Fish Soup)
With an abundant range of deliciously fresh seafood, fish features heavily in the Maltese cuisine and Aljotta is local hearty fish stew, thickened out with garlic, tomatoes, and rice.
Bragioli (Beef Olives)
Bragioli is a popular beef dish with a difference. Boasting of a mouth-watering concoction of bacon, egg and garlic dipped in breadcrumbs and wrapped in tender slices of beef before being slow cooked in a rich wine sauce.
Zalzett Malti (Maltese sausage)
Traditional Maltese sausages (Zalzett Malti) are parcels of flavour. Cooked together with aromatic coriander, they provide a little more depth than the average sausage.
Minestra (Minestrone soup)
Hearty soups characterise Maltese winters, and Minestra is one of the most popular varieties. A thick broth created with several fresh, seasonal vegetables, usually accompanied by thick slices of rustic bread and olive oil.
Soppa tal-Armla (Widow’s Soup)
Yet another typically Maltese soup, this is a rich, tasty soup with potatoes, carrots, garlic, peas, cauliflower and ġbejniet (Maltese cheeselets), amongst other ingredients. So you’re probably wondering, why’s it called Widow’s soup? Basically, it refers to the simplicity of the soup, with ingredients even a poor widow could afford to buy.
Not many sweets are as messy as the Prinjolata, which is a small hill-like cake made of a mishmash of sugary components, covered in cream and decorated with melted chocolate splashes, pine nuts, topped with green and red glacé cherries. Made specifically during Carnival time, and is apparently intended as one last excess of sugary goodness before the start of Lent.
Us Maltese always find the excuse to satisfy our sweet tooth. So just because the decadent carnival sweets stop being sold and consumed, we made sure to have a Lenten alternative. Although nowadays sugar is avoided during Lent, Kwareżimal is a biscuit type of sweet that contains sugar, was introduced by the Knights of Malta, in a time where sugar was seen as a type of spice. Kwareżimal have a strong taste of almonds and a mix of spices and are drizzled in honey.
Qagħaq tal-għasel (Honey rings)
Their circular shape and black treacle filling, Qagħaq tal-għasel are a popular treat originally made around Christmas time but can be bought all year round nowadays, on sale at most supermarkets. Although they’re referred to as honey rings, ironically, they contain no honey and come in different sizes.
When Easter comes around, grocery shops and bakeries are dominated by this flat cake, often shaped in the form of a lamb, rabbit or more generic, playfully shaped specifically baked to celebrate Easter. Filled with a thick layer of marzipan and decorated with molten chocolate or icing and often half of a chocolate Easter egg.
Literally translated to ‘Bones of the Dead’ this sweet is baked around All Souls’ Day, celebrated on the 2nd of November. Although it’s a pretty macabre name for a sweet, these bone-shaped biscuits, filled with marzipan marrow are delicious, with a similar filling to Figolli.
Like with savoury snacks, many of the sweeter dishes are also packaged in a flaky layer of pastry and Imqaret is no different, featuring an outer wrapper of deliciously sweet, fried pastry stuffed with a thick layer of date paste.
Biskuttini tal-Lewz can be found these all over the patisseries and bakeries on the islands. It’s a very simple dish but packs a punch with its flavour, combining the creamy taste of almonds in a soft macaroon.
Maltese food itself is genuine and healthy, albeit calorie-dense – to put it mildly. Savoury dishes dominate the majority of Maltese cuisine. That being said, sweets and pastries are definitely a gastronomic area we excel in. Traditional Maltese food is rustic and based on the seasons.
As you can see, Maltese cuisine has a delectable variety of tasty dishes, both savoury and sweet. Of course, here at Marina Club we pay tribute to our local produce with vehemence. We encourage you to come try one of our delicious dishes: whether it’s the Maltese Board, Ricotta and Tuna Firtters, Linguine Seafood or Fried Local Cheese (to mention a few) or suggest that you book your next family gathering or friends’ reunion at Marina Club, located at the gorgeous Valletta Waterfront. We have a vast selection of dishes that not only do Maltese cuisine its well-deserved justice but have our own original take on the typically traditional local dishes.
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