Traditional Cretan Cuisine at Lavris Hotels & Spa
At Lavris Hotels & Spa we often talk about the culture of taste and Cretan cuisine. The latter is not a mere daily routine; it is not just what we do with the food to keep the body alive, rather it is an issue of cultural heritage. The Greek words are always pregnant with wisdom in their reference to things, as is the case with the setting of a table in Crete, which must comply with the requirements of companionship or communion (Gk "syn-trophico"). In other words, we sit down to eat with our family, friends, or in the company of other people for the sake of interaction. Our recipes "recite" the history, and the stories, of this island.
The Cretan cuisine is the kind of food the farmers of Crete carry to the fields to lay under the cool shade of an olive tree and share with others. It is the big pot that boils at dawn, just before the grape picking begins. It is the ofto and the antikrysto meat cooking in the open air on the occasion of a happy/sad event, e.g. for a wedding reception. It is the sweets with such exotic names as diples, xerotigana, and kalitsounia which taste heavenly. It is the raki and the aromatic red wine that loosen the tongues. Most importantly, however, the Cretan cuisine is company: the laughter and the jokes. And when the fun is high, there is always someone who will play the lyre for the rest to sing songs and recite mantinades.