There are dozens of species of greens and herbs that are consumed daily by the Cretans, raw in salads or boiled or cooked in traditional recipes, such as pies.
Chania is also a place rich in native plants, since its temperate climate helps in their cultivation. The most popular greens, used variously in traditional recipes of Chania are:
• Piny chicory
• Bulbs or askordoulakkoi
• Golden thistle
• Lagoudopaximado or glichoma
Many of these wild greens are biological, since they are growing in meadows, on beaches, rocks and are not cultivated, and as a result – not sprayed with pesticides.
The Cretans gather some of these greens from the areas in which they naturally grow, at the right time, in order to cook them immediately, or to dry them, or put them in brine, or freeze them, so they can be used in their recipes throughout the year.
Many of these types of greens are known to have been used in the diet of the local people since the antiquity.
High gastronomy has now adopted these flavors and includes the wild greens as ingredients.