What a typical Summer Sunday lunch looks like in Malta
If you’ve lived on the island for more a day you’ll know that food in Malta is much more than eating. It is often a gathering, a celebration of sorts. If we’re happy, we eat. If we want to catch up with friends, we eat. If we’re celebrating a significant moment, we eat some more. And on Sundays? We bring out the best.
Most Maltese families get together for a Sunday feast – a never-ending meal that is often made of various courses. It’s almost as if our stomachs double in size especially on Sundays! We gather at around noon and call it a day by as late as 6pm. But it’s not all about the food and loud, long lunches, it’s also a celebration of Mediterranean tradition and local produce.
My favourite Sundays are made of an early rise where my husband & I head to Marsaxlokk (the fishing village) to carefully select our lunch menu, freshly-caught shellfish by resident fishermen and at a fraction of the price of local fish mongers.
While first courses may vary from platters of locally produced tomatoes, black olives, capers, basil, extra virgin olive oil and ġbejniet, or a rich plate of pasta, most main courses often look relatively the same: a main meat, poultry or fish dish, a side of (heavenly!) roast potatoes and some sort of veggie side.
On this particular instance, I made Awrat (Sea bream) filled with sundried tomatoes, capers, olives and mint; caponata (a delicious tomato & green pepper sauce that goes very well with fish) and a side of grilled potatoes al cartaccio on the BBQ. Quite a balanced meal, until we proceed to the dessert where the real indulgence takes place!
Above all, Sunday lunches bring us all together to celebrate each other.