In Sifnos island on the Sunday of Orthodox Easter, after the fasting of Holy Week and unlike the rest of Greece, the lunch table has not spit lamb or kid but a local specialist called Mastelo!
Mastelo is lamb or goat pieces of meat which in Sifnos is cooked in the oven using a special clay kitchenware produced by the potters of the island who is also called mastelo.
On the bottom of mastelo kitchenware, cooks put layers of twigs, as a small rack, allowing meat to drain of its fluids. All fats go to the bottom of mastelo kitchenware, without to come any more into contact with the meat, during the cooking in the oven.
Its exquisite taste imposed mastelo from food of Easter Sunday in food for the whole year. Today most Sifnos guests can taste mastelo during their summer vacation. However the most delicious mastelo are serving Sifnos restaurants equipped with wood-fired ovens!
Those ovens, in many restaurants of the island, are located in a prominent position on the outside and it will not be difficult to locate. Depending on the intensity of the fire mastelo’s baking in wood-fired oven lasts about five hours!
Apart from mastelo kitchenware , the (vineyard) twigs, the local lamb or goat and wood-fired oven for mastelo is also required Sifnos red local wine for marinating, chopped dill, salt and pepper.
Besides mastelo another excellent local specialty, you should definitely try is the chickpea soup, the taste of which, unfortunately we can’t describe in words or capture in pictures!