Τhe visitors were amazed by the cooking shows with Greek products
The culinary superiority and quality of Greek products are displayed through unique dishes created by renowned chefs.
The Mediterranean Food Stage culinary event, which took place during the three days of the exhibition on the stage at Hall 1, aimed to promote the unique culinary and nutritional value of Greek food and drinks, as well as to highlight the export prospects of Greek products in other markets worldwide. Distinguished chefs, having as their “tool” excellent products from every corner of our country, showed, through live cooking shows, to Greek and international professional visitors, ways and unique ideas regarding brunch, with fine products from the Greek land.
Unique aromas and flavors dominated the stage today, Monday, March 20
As part of the promotion of Greek rice, Dina Nikolaou, Chef ambassador of the European Program EURICE, took the stage and created unique dishes based on rice! Afterwards, Chef Manolis Rainakis made baked omelet with green asparagus and kumquat from Corfu and a traditional dessert made from semolina from Zakynthos with broken pasteli. At the same time Konstantinos Ypsilantis, Director General of Tourism, Production and Development of the Region of the Ionian Islands spoke about the culinary excellence of local products.
Chefs Vassilis Karoubas and Tasos Tolis
Konstantinos Nikoloutsos, President of the Chamber of Ilia analyzed the very important issue of connecting gastronomy with tourism, while chef Vassilis Karoubas cooked eggs with tomatoes from Kyllini on a nut base, saganaki with pistachio and sweet quince. The productive… treasures of Thessaly won the public’s attention with chef Dimitris Kaliakis creating olive bread with Magnesia olives and fresh oregano, spentzofai with black garlic jam, omelette with organic vegetables, galotiri with sheep’s yogurt and pomegranate-plum chutney in a handmade rusk. At the same time, Apostolos Billis, Deputy Governor of Thessaly spoke about the great culinary identity of Thessaly and the effort to highlight the local products at a global level.
This wonderful culinary event ended after three days with the chefs from the Dodecanese and Cyclades Chefs Club creating fasting tomato meatballs, sweet cheese pie and parsley salad.
Read the highlights from Sunday, March 19
Early in the morning, Sofia Fouki, Head of Promotion of local products from Epirus Region analyzed the culinary value of the local foods and Chef Hector Ioannou cooked tarts with Galotyri cheese from Paramythia and caramelized onions, stuffed tomatoes with egg and smoked Metsovo cheese, pancakes with Dodoni feta and Roubou ouzo spirit, traditional egg fritters with Epirus graviera flakes, trachana with shrimp from Amvrakiko, tomato and feta and cornmeal pie (bobota) with greek wild leafy greens. Afterwards, Efrosyni Dio, Deputy Governor of Manufacturing, Entrepreneurship and Equality spoke about the effort to promote the local products of Western Macedonia, while at the same time chef Tasos Protopsaltis cooked with local products legumes with chestnuts and manouri, mushrooms with peppers and saffron and yogurt with peach jam. Chefs Club of Dodecanese & Cyclades chefs cooked salted kouli mousse, sfougato, a traditional Greek egg-based dish with tomato jam, Greek pasta with yogurt and loukoumi with pork, while at the same time Filimonas Zannetidis, President of the Regional Council of the South Aegean Region and Authorized Regional Councilor for the Primary Sector spoke about the gastronomy and local products of the South Aegean.
An extremely important workshop was then hosted by the Hellenic Accreditation System. The event, coordinated by Mary Kontaridis, Communication Manager of the Hellenic Accreditation System, hosted two panels that focused on Greek food and beverages as a means of attracting tourist interest, but also on the role of local government in the development, strengthening and extroversion of the Food industry. The event was opened by the Minister of Development and Investments, Adonis Georgiadis, who emphasized the role of FOOD EXPO in creating business opportunities for the Food sector. Also, Mr. Georgiadis during his speech referred to the Ministry’s intention to support the expansion of the exhibition center, which will help in the further development and internationalization of exhibitions such as FOOD EXPO. Afterwards, Christos Nestoras, CEO of E.SY.D., referred to the importance of the food and beverage sector and the new actions aimed at providing municipalities with know-how in order to be able to support producers. Vassilis Economou, Member of Parliament of New Democracy party (Eastern Attica), noted that the region and municipalities can absolutely support Mediterranean products, which are a key pillar of the Greek economy, Kostas Fragogiannis, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs (Economic Diplomacy and External Affairs), among others referred to the work of Enterprise Greece and Export Greece, to strengthen the extroversion of Greek businesses, with specific actions and coordinated efforts.
In the second panel of speeches, the mayors of Acharnes, Spyros Vrettos, Pallini, Athanasios Zoutsos, Kropias, Dimitris Kiousis, as well as Giorgos Kavvathas, president of the Hellenic Confederation of Professionals, Craftsmen and Merchants and Yiannis Hatzitheodosiou, president of the Athens Chamber of Commerce, addressed the greeting. They all underlined the need to strengthen local government with resources, but also with specialized staff, so that the Municipalities can play an essential role in supporting Greek Food and Beverage producers, with the aim of strengthening their production and extroversion. Afterwards Andreas Loverdos, Member of Parliament for the northern sector of Athens, KINAL, noted that Greek products are a basis for strengthening tourism, while the possibilities for development are manifold and finally the Minister of the Interior, Makis Voridis, underlined the need for collaborations and mergers, so that Greek food production can enter the markets of Europe.
Chef Tassos Protopsaltis together with Tassos Tolis during the culinary presentation of the North Macedonia Region
The cooking presentations continued with chef Alexandros Dramaliotis who made mamalinga with fresh herbs, trachana and pumpkins, fried bread with fig jam, feta cheese and peanuts, savory muffins with sausage, formaela cheese, tomato and olives and cheese pie with sultanas. At the same time, Evangelos Koukouzas, Deputy Governor of Entrepreneurship and Outsourcing of the Region of Central Greece referred to the business opportunities and the culinary wealth of the Region. Irini Houdetsanaki-Giakoumaki, Deputy Governor of the Primary Sector of Crete spoke about the food labeling in the strategy “From the farm to the plate”, while at the same time chef Manolis Rainakis created fried eggs with corn on a layer of wild herbs with fennel, calitsounia and bureki with yogurt. The day ended with chef Vangelis Bilimbas cooking sponge cake with pumpkin, feta cheese and ladotiri, myzithropites with mastic, sour myzithra and honey, burekia with sweet pumpkin and Kefalotiri. At the same time, Sultana (Anni) Andreadou, Deputy Governor for the Promotion of North Aegean Products spoke about the gastronomy of the North Aegean.
What did we see today, Saturday, March 18, on stage?
The day started with unique flavors and aromas from Western Greece as the Chef’s Club Peloponnese took their place on the stage, where the chefs presented to the audience trachanopita with sausage from Kalavryta, pancakes with mizithra and strawberries, kayana eggs and roe from Messolonghi, mantarinato and skaltsounia with loukoumi rose and walnuts. At the same time, Theodoros Vassilopoulos, Deputy Regional Governor for Rural Development and President of the agri-food partnership of the Region of Western Greece, spoke about the contribution of the agri-food products of the Olympic land to regional development. Along the way, chef Tasos Tolis cooked buffalo sausages and strapatsada, buffalo pastrami with potato salad and rice pudding with Akane from Serres.
Unique recipe for Greek brunch
During the live cooking show, Athanasios Malliaras, President of the Chamber of Serres, mentioned in his speech the fertile land and the fine products of the Prefecture of Serres. Following the culinary presentations, chefs Michalis Papakyritsis & Marianna Xofaki presented excellent brunch proposals with Cretan products, while Stavros Tzedakis, Vice-Regional Governor of Crete for agri-food issues and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Partnership spoke in detail about the uniqueness and quality of traditional Cretan products. Anna Kalogeropoulou, Deputy Regional Governor of Tourism & Culture of Peloponnese presented the very interesting gastronomy festival “Peloponnese food stories” as a tool for promotion and networking, while at the same time chef Panagiotis Bourtsouklis cooked a Laconian omelette with synglino, crepe net with Tripoli cheese, Argolida orange salami stuffed with berries and mint, rural toast with Messinian pork and caramel raisins in pancakes from Xylokastro.
The food and beverages of the Attica Region were later presented, during the speeches of Dimitra Angelaki, Advisor for Fisheries, Agricultural and Veterinary Policy and Thanos Antonopoulos, Agriculturist, Department of Agricultural Policy and Promotion of the Directorate of Agricultural and Veterinary Policy. Acropolis – Chefs Club of Attica presented afterwards the excellent quality products of Attica land by cooking traditional Attica savory pies, yogurt mousse with pistachio, Attica honey and caramelized fruits, sourdough bread with poached egg, figs and baked cheese.
Chefs Panagiotis Bourtzouklis & Tasos Tolis create dishes with products from Peloponnese
The “strongest story of taste”… that of Macedonian cuisine was analyzed by Sotiris Batos, Head of Innovation and Extraversion of the Central Macedonia Region, while chef Kostas Georgantzas presented fustoron, kavorma in clay, Vlach pumpkin pie and tanned Sorva. The day ended with the flavors of the west meeting those of the east, as chef Vassilis Mandros made Thracian lalangites stuffed with Evros crab and Rhodope graviera and velouté soup with Nestos asparagus. Last but not least, Vassilis Delistamatis, Deputy Governor of Agricultural Economy and Veterinary Medicine of Eastern Macedonia-Thrace spoke about the culinary superiority of the local products.