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Experience Foraging in Crete

"Exquisite Ingredients"

The incredible culinary landscape that has become part of Greece’s touristic identity is well known for its abundance of seafood, fresh produce and the iconic, recognisable dishes such as souvlaki and moussaka found in coastal taverns from the waterline of Chania to Athens. Less acknowledged are some of the ancient Greek ingredients which have survived in the hearts of civilian kitchens; through the coded languages and family secrets they have remained outside of the main fray of contemporary Greek cuisine but still undeniably relevant. Here, Conte invites you to discover the wonders and memories created when you experience foraging in Crete.

A cropped photo of a dry landscape in between too mountains in Crete
A photo of an open fire on a sandy beach overlooking a body of water

The mountainous and abundant landscapes of Crete have offered a climate ripe for centuries worth of foraging and innovating. Conte invites you to explore the unique herbs and plants which have been kept hidden from other cultures through an itinerary which reflects the unfrequented nature of Crete’s foraging scene; an ‘off-the-beaten-path’ mediterranean island trip. Here, forage for askolimbi, the golden thistle which, with a similar taste to artichoke and is almost as highly revered here as truffles are in Italy. As your local guide reveals their secret foraging spots, you can learn about the significance of the dandelion and black mustard leaves, smell the wild sage, and learn about the practice of hunting for ‘horta’, an age-old and yet still endured tradition in these communities. 

Experience Foraging in Crete

Return to the city of Agios Nikolaos, produce in hand, for a cooking class led by a chef to explore how the ingredients you have harvested are used in local dishes. Popular favourites include Cretan askolimbi with stamnagathi or tender lamb cooked ‘antikristo’ style. With the summer day time heat trickling into longer evenings, the best time to visit Crete is definitely during the summer months from June to August. At this time of year, you might even feel inclined to join in a Yakinthia Festival celebration if you pass a celebrating town. These whimsical flickers of local life are the memories which will last through your journey home, and carry the spirit and people of Crete with you. 


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