Crisp, fragrant and irregularly shaped. Another is round and another is elongated. Some rusks are found in very small bites and others need to be broken into pieces. This is the rusk of Crete. The pride of Crete, better. A landmark of local gastronomy, which over the years has conquered the world.
Its “cap” holds since ancient times, when it was still called “dipyrite bread” (twice in the fire). Thanks to its long life, it mainly served people who were missing from their homes for a long time, such as the farmer, the sailor and the shepherd.
Another characterization that has been attributed to the Cretan rusk over the years is as “the bread of the poor” as it was usually made by families who could not eat bread every day. It is basically bread, which is cut into thin or thick slices and baked again at a low temperature until it loses all its moisture. Hence the double-baked rusk!
As usual, the classic rusk is made from wholemeal flour or barley flour; a tradition that continues to this day. In addition to barley, there are other types of rusks, such as wheat, barley rolls, migadero, heptazymo and rye rusk. The Cretan rusk became known and established as dakos – the salad with the rusk, fresh grated tomato, mizithra (local cheese), olive oil and oregano. Apart from the dakos, which is the thick long and narrow rusk, there is the bun, the round rusk with the hole in the middle. Something similar to the bun is the “tobacco” just without the hole in the middle.
Rusk is a food with high nutritional value, rich in fiber offers immediate energy. Contains B vitamins, magnesium, phosphorus and has antioxidant activity. Of course, it also has a lot of calories, considering that it is dehydrated bread. So it is good to consume it carefully.
The unique taste and quality of the Cretan rusk is confirmed by the certification of Protected Geographical Indication (PGI). It is prepared, in other words, exclusively in Crete and presents specific unique characteristics, such as the recipe, quality, use and more. It has been very popular as a product; it is no coincidence that many restaurants outside Crete have included it in their menu. Below you will find a wide variety of rusks of the Ntourountous bakery made with pure ingredients from the heart of Crete, Sfakia.