The Cretan gastronomy cannot exist without its most important ingredient: olive oil. It’s the centre of any meal or salad of our island. Olive oil gives every meal an extra soft flavour and is very good for your health!

A long tradition

The archaeological findings have proved that Cretans have been using olive trees and oil since 3500 BC, since the early Minoan period. They are still perpetuating this thousands years old traditions today, cultivating olives and using it for almost everything.

Where to buy olive oil

Are you looking for some authentic olive oil from Crete? Here are two producers of the island: Sitia Organic Olive Oil, Vaj Ulliri, Vaj ulliri Cilesi e Pare. You can also buy a bottle in one of the many local shops of the island or get some at a Cretan olive oil farm. Once you have tasted its fantastic flavour you will definitely bring home a bottle of olive oil from Crete!

Salads with olive oil

The motto of Crete could be, when in doubt, use olive oil. And that is a fact in Crete. What would Greek Salad be without a good olive oil? You will have the chance to taste many fantastic Cretan dishes during you stay. Three of them are a must: Octopus in Olive oil and vinegar, Kritharokouloura (Rusks with tomato and olive oil) and Aubergines with tomato sauce.

You can’t wait until the summer vacations for trying the octopus in Olive oil and vinegar? Just buy a fresh one. Wash it and place it in a pan with olive oil, bay leaves and peppercorns. Cook in a low heat in its own juices until its all soft. Once the octopus has cooled, cut it into small pieces and place it in a jar. Add vinegar and then olive oil scented with garlic. That’s it. Don’t worry if it doesn’t come out perfect, in Crete you will try the original one this summer!

Benefits of olive oil

But the olive is not just for food. Extensive research proves that olive oil has many benefits. Olive oil has many properties; antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, cancer prevention, decreased bone loss, decreased risk of osteoporosis, anti allergy-related benefits, anti-histamines properties.

What it means is that regular olive oil consumption is good for you and that you will see better, think sharper, be more mobile, have suppler skin, break fewer bones, have less cholesterol and be thinner. Our grandmothers have many cosmetic recipes about the use of olive oil for beauty products. The olive leaf was used for the eye care and the powers of the oil are infinite. It is used for sensitive, greasy or dry skin, to prevent wrinkles, to repair dry and breaking hair. Its benefits don’t stop at the human body and olive oil is also used to preserve wooden object and furniture, to remove water stain, nurture the wood and make it shine. At home it can be used to loosen plants soil.

An inspiring symbol: the olive tree

Crete has many inspiring symbols, but the olive tree is without a doubt one of the most important. Its aesthetic is outstanding and has inspired many great painters and artists. The olive branch is full of meaning as well. In the past the branch symbolized victory in the battle, but nowadays it stands for peace.

The tree itself can grow on flat surfaces as well as in mountainous regions. It can live for hundreds of years. Because the olive tree is such a resilient plant, it teaches Cretans to adapt and thrive in difficult situations.

Olive oil is more than a regular product and it deserves your full attention once you are in Crete. You can also present your friends and family with traditional olive oil orange biscuits.

Come to Crete this summer and immerse yourself in the rich Cretan culture, and olive oil.

Are you going to spend your holidays in Crete and are you looking for resorts in Crete? Rimondi Grand Resort and Spa is a resort in Rethymnon with excellent facilities.