Home > Food, Greece > Cooking in Naxos

Cooking in Naxos

Milos was nice but just didn’t keep our attention and staying as we were, right by the port, the allure of jumping on a boat to visit yet another island

View of Santorini from our ferry

seemed irresistible. So we booked the longest ferry from Milos to Naxos which took four hours but stopped off at Folegandros, Santorini and Ios amongst a few others islands. Though we didn’t visit these places, we did admire them from the port and with the exception of Folegandros and Santorini, didn’t feel like we were missing anything much!

Arriving into Naxos, as was the case at all other islands, we walked off the boat and only outside the port and across the street behind a traffic police woman was a line of people advertising rooms and studios. Greece has recently passed a law for pedlars to stay out of the port because the local hotels complained they were losing customers. I can’t understand why the local hotels also couldn’t send in a peddler but I guess it wouldn’t pass as a done thing for 4* and above hotels. But customers looking for that will have either pre-booked or won’t be swayed by the pedlars pushing studios and apartments. Yet another Greek mystery.

Sunset from our terrace

A particularly pushy male peddler of middle age and sagging middle wouldn’t let us go and at one point elbowed a young lady who was trying to attract our attention. Though we had a couple of hotels in mind, this made us circumnavigate the girth of the big guy to ask the lady what her rooms were like. She was pleasant and had an honest style about her and before long we were in her car being driven to the old town just up from the port. In the end we settled for a room above where her mum lived and it was a little attic conversion but very light and airy with a huge terrace overlooking the sea.

Renting a scooter we had a great couple of days in Naxos and decided to extend our stay

Landlady in her kitchen

for another two days at the end of which we really liked it and ended up staying a week altogether. In that time we saw the island, visited beaches, ate at lovely little tavernas and were looked after by the Mama downstairs. She sent us dome lovely food in a dish and we instantly saw what was so great about Greek home cooking! Tomatoes, peppers and aubergines hollowed out and fled with a scrumptious mixture of fried veal, rice and thyme and cooked slowly in the oven till the juices start to run. She gave us a plate straight out of the oven and we had some and left half for later in the fridge. Cold (and hungry from a night out) we found the dish even more delicious.

In fact it is at this studio with a little kitchenette that we did the more cooking than in the previous six months. We cooked napolitana sauce with the fresh and juicy tomatoes available here. We sprinkled our food with the variety of herbs which just seems to grow everywhere in Naxos. You never need to buy fresh herbs here, just take a large branch off, go home and dry it as was demonstrated by Mama.

Waking early one morning we visited the port. There is a massive gateway standing right up on a hillock which seems like it’s framing the town and is in fact the remains of a site which pre-dates Acropolis. Having taken

Adonis impressing old ladies

photos we climbed down to find a bit of the shore where a number of older women were getting out of their clothes to go for a swim on the rocks. There were no younger people or indeed any men around the bay. Next thing I knew, Craig was getting out of his t-shirt and jumping into the water. The ladies looked up with a start. Craig swam out to the sea and emerged out of the water a few metres out and the ladies gasped with pleasure. From there Craig returned by wading into the water with the ladies admiring him like he was an Adonis come out of the sea.

At this point thoughts of the end of the year and what we’ll do when we reach home started to occupy my mind and though it hasn’t been quite as long as a year yet, I manged to convince Craig to start thinking about our return.

We started to apply for jobs and decided we needed to head home. That meant we needed to reach Athens for a flight. Between Athens and us stood one great big barrier however – not just the desire to stay away but also the island of Paros. The second largest (after Naxos) of the Cyclades group and invitingly close!

Categories: Food, Greece Tags: , , , , ,
  1. September 22, 2011 at 00:22

    Naxos was by far my favourite though after a while the Cyclades do start to merge. For me though it was our apartment and eating some of Mamas homecooked food along with a cold glass of white wine and enjoying the great view.

  2. September 22, 2011 at 01:59

    A shame that you didn’t stop off in Folegandros, it has one of the prettiest villages in the Cyclades, Santorini is too commercialised for me, Ios is one of my favourites with great restaurants but a shame about the Carrefour supermarket which has replaced a traditional old Greek store. Naxos is lovely. On your way to Athens I would recommend Antiparos rather than Paros! Hope you have a good trip. Thanks for giving me a memory nudge!

    • September 23, 2011 at 03:34

      Thanks Andrew, unfortunately didn’t make Anti Paros though did stay in Paros for three days which was pleasant. Favourite islands so far were Sifnos and Naxos in that order!

  3. toogreytogrind
    September 22, 2011 at 06:04

    What “Craig returned by wading into the water with the ladies admiring him like he was an Adonis come out of the sea.”, they must have had a skin full of ouzo!

    • September 23, 2011 at 03:35

      You had to be there!

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