Glorious Greece: Part 1, Tzatziki

It was 12 years ago this spring that my husband and I went to Greece on our honeymoon, and I’ve had a love affair with Greece and Greek food ever since.

Wildflowers in an olive orchard, Maleme, Crete.

We spent a large part of our trip on the island of Crete, where the wildflowers and wild thyme were in bloom, and where many endemic plant and animal species and subspecies are not to be found anywhere else in the world. It’s a truly magnificent and diverse island in its terrain, culture and in the food. The inhabitants of Crete are especially known for their healthy lifestyles, and for food dishes featuring what’s locally available—and some of the world’s best foragers of wild plants live there. To this day, I will never forget my first taste of Horta, wild greens cooked in garlic, olive oil and lemon, and what a revelation it was to me to realize that I could love greens­. There was also Horiatiki, a refreshing salad of cucumber, tomato, onion, kalamata olives and feta. And oh, those Cretan hot pots—stews of meat, herbs and vegetables, topped with grated hard local cheese and then cooked in small covered clay pots—something I would love to taste again and cannot replicate. Continue reading