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Join this cooking holiday in Crete and be witness of a way of life largely unchanged for centuries in a magnificent coastal scenery and a mountainous interior. A fabulous, healthy, and nutritional diet based only on fresh local produce, as well as cookery workshops, a relaxed pace, and plenty of time to enjoy the results, will be part of this unique experience.
Accommodation options are carefully selected and usually come in the form of a small local hotel, villa, or house with traditional architecture. All are of exceptional quality as Hand Picked Greece pays close attention to every detail in order to ensure the highest standards.
All accommodations are certified by the local tourist authorities and you can expect the hosts to be friendly and welcoming. Lodgings will be located within a short distance of the holiday base and will usually have wonderful gardens and swimming pools.
Your accommodation can range from small traditional cottages to larger luxury villas. All accommodation is located in and around the village of Litsarda, close to the Olive Farm. When you get in touch with Hand Picked Greece to plan your holiday, you will also discuss your specific accommodation requirements. They will provide a range of options for your particular tour, including photos, before you book the holiday.
This unique course on Cretan gastronomy has been specially designed to show you the specifics of the Cretan and Greek diets. During your holiday, you will learn how to make a series of signature dishes, pies, and other local delicacies, as well as participate in cooking workshops at the Olive Farm, visit the Central Food Market in Chania, and discover top quality local produce from artisan producers.
During this retreat, you will visit local artisan producers, as well as the Central Food Market in Chania. All visits and workshops are arranged within walking distance of your accommodation, through olive groves and herb-filled slopes.
Frini grew up in a family where everybody cooks. Her first teacher was her grandmother, who immigrated to Crete form Asia Minor and carried along a significant gastronomic heritage. She taught her how to make multiple traditional dishes and filled her memories with flavors, tastes, and skills. As she grew up, he realized that most people eat to live but there are some who live to eat. Happily, she belonged to the second group. Frini studied in Cyprus the Art and Science of culinary preparation and has worked as a gastronomy consultant and instructor of the Greek and Cretan cuisine ever since.
This holiday will take place in Crete, Greece. Crete is the fifth biggest island in the Mediterranean Sea and lies on the southern frontier of Europe, combining wonderful seaside sceneries alongside a mountainous terrain.
With a strategic geographical position, Crete has always been a cultural crossroads with many Venetian, Arabic, and Turkish influences. It is a culinary haven for anyone looking to discover authentic cooking and eating. It is also a magnificent island with dramatic scenery and thousands of years of history.
The traditional Cretan diet is very much alive, especially in the villages and rural areas. It includes large amounts of fresh fruit and vegetables, cereals like wheat and barley, legumes, nuts, olives and olive oil, and numerous endemic wild herbs and aromatic plants. Refusing an offer for a meal is really not an option and visitors share in meals that might last two to three hours.
Greek cuisine is a combination between the Italian and the Arabic cuisines. The people still eat what their ancestors ate hundreds of years back. They eat wild edible greens collected during long walks, snails, and different bean varieties. They use barley rusks instead of bread with their meals and make kalitsounia, which are little pies made with dough rather than filo pastry and fry them. They prefer the local cheeses and herbs, avoid veal, and celebrate with lamb or goat.
Cretans eat cheese with honey and put olive oil everywhere, even in desserts. Of course, they also continue to cook at home in the same simple way their great grandmothers did. The result is a naturally sustainable way of life.
In Crete, the diet consists of mainly pulses, vegetables, and fruits. Dairy comes next; fish, chicken, and eggs follow; and red meat is eaten only occasionally. Traditionally, Greeks used to eat meat only a few times each month, most likely on a Sunday and usually in the form of a stew or casserole with plenty of vegetables, accompanied by handmade pasta or rice.
Grilled or roast meat was served during celebrations and elaborate desserts were only prepared during festive periods as well. Food is not only a mean of survival here; it is the foundation of the entire Greek culture. People are truly dedicated to eating and drinking and will spend long hours preparing and even longer sitting with family and friends to enjoy a meal.
Please book your flight to arrive at Chania International Airport (CHQ).
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