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The island of Crete is renowned for its natural beauty and unique culture. It’s no surprise, then, that the products of this Greek island are just as special. From delicious food and drink to handmade gifts and artisanal items, there are plenty of great things to buy on Crete.
Here’s a guide to some of the best products of Crete to look out for during your visit!
What makes Cretan cuisine unique?
Cretan cuisine is among the world’s most nutritious and healthy. All the dishes are made with natural ingredients from the Cretan soil, with no spices to mask the flavors.
Here are some Cretan foods that you might want to try. Selino me araka (celery with peas), agrimi stifado (braised wild goat), chicken with chestnuts, makarounia sioufichta (handmade pasta from flour, water, salt, and olive oil served with cheese), chochlioi bourbouristoi (snails), chicken with yogurt, and lamb with artichokes are just some of the dishes available!
Products of Crete: Food and drink.
1. Olive oil.
Crete is famous for its olive oil, which is said to be some of the best in the world. Make sure to pick up a bottle or two to take home with you.
Virgin olive oil is also an unrefined olive oil, which means it was extracted without the use of chemicals or heat. The only difference between extra virgin olive oil and virgin olive oil is that extra virgin olive oil has a slightly higher oleic acidity level. Virgin olive oil is also suitable for baking. Refined olive oil is less expensive than virgin olive oil.
However, it lacks vitamins, nutrients, and even taste and flavor when compared to extra virgin or virgin olive oil. Pure olive oil is a combination of extra virgin and refined olive oil. It also has a lower nutritional value than virgin olive oil.
Another product of Crete that’s well-known for its quality is honey. There are many different types to try, so be sure to sample a few before making your purchase. Cretan honey is well known for its high nutritional value, as it boosts the immune system and revitalizes the body.
Since ancient times, Greeks have used honey as their primary sweetener. In fact, honey, along with olives and grapes, was the foundation of Greek cuisine. With a high percentage of endemic plants, the rich Greek flora biodiversity includes a wide variety of honey emanating from thyme, pine, fir, and other conifers!
Cretan wine is also excellent, and you’ll find many local varieties to choose from. Cretans are well aware of the health benefits of moderate wine consumption; it is part of their culture: Good wine complements every meal. Wine consumption is not a solitary activity; it is associated with social gatherings, good company, and camaraderie.
Crete’s modern wine industries have capitalized on the great traditional varieties and centuries-old accumulated wine-making knowledge. Cretan wine varieties include vidiano, liatiko, mantilari, and kotsifali.
Another must-try food on Crete is cheese. Some of the most popular types include feta and mizithra, both of which make great additions to salads or snacks. It contains vitamins A and D, as well as proteins and calcium. Fresh dairy products must be consumed on a daily basis for the human body to benefit from their essential nutrients. Traditional cheese can be found in a wide variety of delicatessen shops!
Other products of Crete!
1. Olive wood products.
Another popular type of souvenir from Crete is olive wood products. These can range from kitchen utensils to jewelry and more.
The Cretans produce bowls and other kitchenware from the wood of olive trees and market these items to tourists as trinkets. They also produce skin-friendly olive oil soaps.
The island is well recognized for its musical heritage, which draws inspiration from its residents’ emotions and zest for life. The Lyra and lute are the two most well-known instruments used by the great masters of Cretan music. While the lute is played like a guitar, the Lyra is played with a bow like a violin. You can’t miss a festival in Crete and listen to their unique music!
Cretan jewelry is also very popular, and you’ll find many shops selling beautiful pieces made with silver and gold. Cretans are renowned for their pottery artwork, embroidered on many of their garments, traditional home weaving decorations, and other exquisite handicrafts produced by local women.
These are just some of the great products of Crete that you’ll find during your visit. Be sure to take advantage of the opportunity to buy unique gifts and souvenirs while you’re here!