Maltese Cuisine looks rustic at first sight, but it is definitely delicious. Due to multiple nations having colonized Malta in its history, Maltese cuisine is influenced by the Italian, British, and also Arabic cuisine.
1. Local Rabbit
One of the well known national Maltese dishes is Traditional Stewed Rabbit. It is served in two ways, one is Fenek Moqli which is braised local rabbit in wine, olive oil, garlic and fresh herbs, the other one is Stuffat Tal-Fenek which is slow stewed local rabbit in a sauce of tomatoes, onions, peas and fresh herbs. Beside these two styles of rabbit, you can also find a dish of spaghetti served in a rabbit sauce.
Another well known staple of Maltese cuisine is called Pastizzi. It is a savoury pastry which has three types of fillings: ricotta cheese, curried peas, or creamy chicken. Since pastizzi is the nation’s most popular street food, you can find locals eat it at any time of the day.
3. Maltese Bread – Ftira
Ftira is a traditional Maltese bread usually in a shape of flat circle. It is made of flour, water and salt. It is similar with ciabatta but different in its own way. Quite often, Ftira is used as a reference to a type of Maltese sandwich, which is made of Ftira bread with tuna, tomatoes, capers, olives, lettuce, and other fresh leaves. For local people, Ftira sandwich is a perfect lunch at the beach after swimming.
4. Smoked horse meat carpaccio
As a starter, smoked horse meat carpaccio is definitely a good choice. It is very tender and tasty, perfect to combine with a local red wine.
5. Bebbux bl-Aljoli (Farmhouse snails)
If you are a fan of snails, you definitely should try Bebbux. It is slowly cooked with local farmhouse snail, celery, pepper, carrots, onion, garlic, lemon juice, wine, polpa and herbs.
6. Maltese Sausages – Zalzett tal-Malti
Maltese Sausage is made of ground pork, ground black pepper, crushed coriander seeds, minced garlic cloves and sea salt. It has a strong flavour. Usually you can find it served pan-fried, grilled, plainly boiled as starter or main course in local restaurant. You can also find local people eat it raw, which requires it to be very fresh. Since Maltese people are enthusiastic about sausages, it can be found in every butcher store.
Kinnie is an iconic Maltese soft drink. It has its own Mediterranean sweet & herb flavour. Many Maltese have fallen in love with Kinnie.
Cisk is the local Maltese beer. It is equally popular with tourists and locals. You can find them in different types and sizes. “ The Cisk Pilsner has been voted world’s best Czech style Pale Lager in the World Beer Awards 2017 at a judging event held in London.” – Times of Malta.
On a Mediterranean island, fish is a dish you definitely want to sample. In Malta you can find many local fish dishes. Depending on the kind of fish, they are usually served braised, grilled, or oven baked.
10. Fried date fritters
Fried date fritters is a very traditional snack. You can find it at local street hawkers selling sweets, vegetables stores, supermarkets, or in some local restaurants served with honey and ice-cream as a dessert.
11. Qaghaq tal-ghasel (Honey Ring)
Qaghaq tal-ghasel is a very traditional Christmas-style biscuit. It is made of Maltese honey, semolina, brown sugar, and other Christmas seasonings. If you are a festive person, you will for sure like it.
12. Horse meat, stewed or fried
Alike rabbit meat, horse meat is also a traditional dish in Malta. It is cooked the same way as rabbit. You can find it in the local agriculture farm village called Mgarr.
13. Fried Quail.
In the local agriculture village called Mgarr, you will find this dish. It is usually served fried with vegetables as main course.
14. Goat Cheese
In Gozitan restaurants, you will find different dishes with local Goat cheese. You can find them served as a starter, as peppered goat cheese, deep fried goat cheese or with other Chef’s signature combinations.
15. Bragjuluj il-Furn (Beef Olives)
Bragjuluj il-Furn is a a traditional dish, using beef minute steaks rolled up with a boiled egg and seasoned minced beef filling.