Sheftalies Traditional Cypriot Sausages

Mousake Greek Dish
How to Make Sheftalies

Sheftalies are a traditional Cypriot dish that has been enjoyed for generations. They are a type of sausage made from minced pork or lamb that is seasoned with a variety of spices and herbs, and then wrapped in a casing made from lamb or pork fat. The result is a juicy and flavourful sausage that is a staple of Cypriot cuisine.

Invented by The Shepherds

The history of sheftalies can be traced back to the early 19th century when Cypriot shepherds would prepare them for their meals while out tending to their flocks. The shepherds would use the available ingredients, such as leftover meat, herbs, and spices, to create a filling that would be wrapped in animal fat and grilled over an open flame. This simple and tasty dish quickly became a favourite among the shepherds, and soon it became a popular dish throughout the island.

Making Sheftalies
Served As An Appetizer Or Main Course

Today, sheftalies are a common sight at traditional Cypriot gatherings and celebrations, such as weddings and christenings. They are typically served as an appetizer or main course, accompanied by fresh vegetables, dips, and bread.

The Preparation Of Sheftalies

The preparation of sheftalies is a time-consuming process that requires patience and skill. The meat is first minced and mixed with a variety of spices and herbs, such as parsley, coriander, and cumin. The mixture is then left to marinate for several hours, allowing the flavours to develop. Next, the sausage casing is created by trimming the excess fat from the meat and shaping it into a thin, flat circle. The filling is then placed in the centre of the casing, and the edges are folded over to create a pouch.

The Sheftalies Are Grilled Over Charcoal

Finally, the sheftalies are grilled over an open flame until they are cooked through and the casing is crispy. They are typically served hot, with a squeeze of lemon juice to add a tangy flavour to the dish.

They Can Be Made With A Variety Of Meats

One of the reasons why sheftalies are so popular in Cyprus is their versatility. They can be made with a variety of meats, such as lamb, pork, or beef, and can be seasoned according to personal preference. They are also a great way to use up leftover meat, making them a budget-friendly option for families.

Sheftalies Are A Delicious And Unique Dish

In conclusion, sheftalies are a delicious and unique dish that is an important part of Cypriot culture and cuisine. From their humble beginnings as a shepherd’s meal to their current status as a beloved national dish, sheftalies have stood the test of time and continue to be a favourite of locals and visitors alike.

How to Make Sheftalies


– 1 lb Minced mead lamb

– 1/2 onion, finely chopped

– 2 garlic cloves, minced

– 1/4 cup parsley, chopped

– 1 tbsp oregano

– 1/2 tsp salt

– 1/4 tsp pepper

– 1/4 cup breadcrumbs

– 1 egg

Sheftalies A Traditional Cypriot Dish


  1. Soak wooden skewers in water for at least 30 minutes.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the ground lamb, onion, garlic, parsley, oregano, salt, pepper, breadcrumbs and egg.
  3. Mix well until everything is incorporated.
  4. Take a small handful of the mixture and press the meat firmly in your palm to create a long, thin sausage shape.
  5. Roll it in the cult so to keep the shape of the sasauge.
  6. Repeat until all the mixture is used up.
  7. Preheat a grill or grill pan to medium-high heat.
  8. Grill the sheftalies for 10-12 minutes, turning occasionally to ensure even cooking.
  9. Serve hot with lemon wedges, salad and tzatziki sauce, if desired. Enjoy!

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