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Mediterranean Diet Cookbook

BillHartmann's picture

Anybody have any recommendation for such a cookbook?

One that uses common ingredients that are available in most grocery stores.

I see that amazon has this one "The New Mediterranean Diet Cookbook: A Delicious Alternative for Lifelong Health".

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William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
Heather's picture

(post #63019, reply #1 of 24)

I have that one. I've just started using it but I've enjoyed everything I've made so far.
On thumbing through it now I don't see any unusual ingredients.

BillHartmann's picture

(post #63019, reply #2 of 24)

I found these on Amazon about the 94 version of the book.

"
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful:
3.0 out of 5 stars Great reading but the recipes will bog you down, March 10, 2008
By Patrick W. Crabtree "The Old Grottomaster" (Lucasville, OH USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER) (REAL NAME)
I have a lot of heart trouble and I bought this cookbook specifically to look into The Mediterranean Diet as a means to benefit my precarious health. I cook a lot, every day, as I'm retired and it's my job to prepare a balanced suppertime meal for my wife and me each day -- she's still working full-time and, of course, she's pretty hungry when she comes through the door each evening. (If you want to see what my own chefing skill-level is, go to "Recipezaar" and look up "Bone Man" -- that's me and I have about 300 recipes posted there that you can view and/or print for free).

This cookbook is intelligently written, bulging with great and useful advice, and details of The Mediterranean Diet are clearly stated therein; however, one would be very hard-pressed to complete all the tasks which go with owning a home and raising a family, and balancing that burden with cooking the dishes found in here.

These are, in fact, fine recipes (I've made several of them), but my point is, they're too complex and ingredient-diverse to pull off every day and that objective is sort of the purpose of any particular diet. An example of the problem is that sometimes, one recipe refers you to yet another recipe, on a different page, for preparation. Another evaluation is that one would need to go to the grocery at least every other day as this author uses a LOT of different ingredients -- while conforming nicely to The Mediterranean Diet requirements, these recipes are very diverse in regard to ingredients. A final comment is that these dishes are not largely all that cheap to make and, over time, this becomes a problem for many of us.

One other criticism I have is that, while the book is nicely bound, it's inappropriately bound for a cookbook. It's fairly large and it doesn't lie flat. The paper is not of a "slick" variety and it's of a type of paper that seems to absorb every splash and stain that gets near it. All this is really just a minor complaint but I think that this was a huge oversight on the part of the publisher and certainly represents an inconvenience for the home cook.

So, my summary is this: if you have a helper in the kitchen who can also go to the grocery for you on short notice, this cookbook might be okay. I would also say that the recipes are quite worthwhile for folks (even non-dieters) who wish to prepare one of these dishes just once in awhile -- but to stick to the recipes herein, day after day, would be notably difficult and costly."

And

"I bought this book because my Doctor recommended a Mediterranean Diet for heart health. It is a big book, full of recipies and asides about living in Mediterranean countries. That part was interesting. However, I found the recipies way too ethnic for our use. They use many ingredients that can not be found in our South-Western community. Also, most of them don't even appeal to me. I did read it cover to cover and tried to glean from it some basics of a Mediterranean Diet that I could try to apply to our circumstances. In that respect, it was helpful."

I wonder if the ingredients where some of the changes for the new edition?

But they where in the minority.

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William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe


Edited 6/25/2009 1:06 am by BillHartmann

. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
Heather's picture

(post #63019, reply #3 of 24)

I'm thumbing through the recipes right now and haven't found anything that I can't buy at my local grocery store. I guess it depends where you live, but there isn't anything very exotic. Whenever she has a less common ingredient, like guanciale, she also lists pancetta or slab bacon.

Most of the recipes are simple. I'm not sure how that reviewer usually cooks, but you definitely don't need kitchen help.

Gretchen's picture

(post #63019, reply #4 of 24)

With the vast possibilities of the internet I would download a few that I like and not be tied to one book.  I think there are even whole cookbooks available on some of these sites.


http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Mediterranean+diet+recipes&aq=f&oq=&aqi=g5


Gretchen
Gretchen
BillHartmann's picture

(post #63019, reply #5 of 24)

In general I will do that. See a recipe are a grocery special and then google for recipes using that item or combination.

But in this case I since is mostly completely different that what I am used to I though that a starting point would be a good cookbook that I could flip through to get "inspiration". Also give more details on the ingredients and other names that they might go by and substitutes.

I had google on Mediterranean Diet Cookbook and while I found some good stuff a lot of it was "info-mercials" on diet books.

Mediterranean Diet Recipes is not much better, but again there are some good ones.

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William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
Gretchen's picture

(post #63019, reply #6 of 24)

Did you look at any of the sites in my link?  Some are just like a "cookbook".


For example


http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/collections/healthy_mediterranean_recipes.html


Gretchen
Gretchen
Rae's picture

(post #63019, reply #7 of 24)

If you go to Recipezaar and mark 'cookbooks' in the search feature and type Mediterranean you will get tons of Medi cookbooks. I found one this week for Mediterranean Style Orange Roughy Recipe # 94842. Just delicious and very quick. I made a couple minor substitutions and loved it.

BillHartmann's picture

(post #63019, reply #8 of 24)

As I said I found some good ones and that one was one of them.

And http://www.mediterranean-food-recipes.com/mediterranean-diet-plan.html

And this was probably one of the better ones.

www.MediterrAsian.com
- Mediterranean diet recipes, Asian diet recipes ...

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William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
shywoodlandcreature's picture

(post #63019, reply #17 of 24)

Bill , I have that cookbook on order, so can't report on it yet, but if you're interested in a Mediterranean diet, try searching for Evelyn's recipes at Recipezaar (and I'm pretty sure somebody who's better at searching than I am can provide a nifty link to the whole shebang). Evelyn's recipes are fantastic, realistic, and, ta da! She's
Greek -- not that that means she's fanatical about any one style of cooking, but she's pretty darned authentic.




"And then, because of the transitive reactive Halstead-era seizing properties of the Aboriginal Double Humpback Turtle, I thought, what if I add one teaspoon of clarified monkey paste?" Anonymous blog comment on "America's Test Kitchen"

Lee's picture

(post #63019, reply #9 of 24)

I have the book, use it and like it.  The recipes are pretty simple and straight forward and, so far, we have liked everything I've made from it.  As Heather said, she lists alternatives for any items that might be hard to find, but I haven't noticed many of those.  The majority of recipes are for soups, fish, vegetables, legumes, rice and pasta dishes, poultry, grains, salads and some breads.  I don't think there are more than a dozen recipes for meat dishes, mostly lamb, veal and pork.  Very healthful eating.  The recipes are from the Med countries we're most familiar with (Italy, France, Greece, Spain) but also from Turkey, the Middle East and North Africa.


Edited 6/25/2009 2:54 pm ET by lee

roz's picture

(post #63019, reply #10 of 24)

Bill, there are many great Med cookbooks and I haven't found one I didn't like. So sad. Go to your local library and check out ALL the Med cookbooks and glean from those books.

I love all of Paula Wolfert's books
Nancy Harmon Jenkins
Joyce Goldstein
Ursula Ferigno (A UK based author...might be harder to find)
Marlena Spieler
Jane Sigal
and lots more. That list is off the top of my head.

(My computer bit the dust and this is a borrowed one.)

Be impeccable with your word. Don't take anything personally. Don't make assumptions. Do your best. Don Miguel Ruiz
BillHartmann's picture

(post #63019, reply #12 of 24)

Good idea.

Hard to tell the get the flavor of a cookbook online.

(All bad puns intended. But some of the stuff that I have tried eating the cookbook would probably be tastier.)

The online catalog makes it very hard to browse.

They must have a dozen copies of Jenkins book, but all of then are either out or between branches. So I put a hold it and a couple of others that aren't at the local branch. When the come I will browse the shelves.

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William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe


Edited 6/25/2009 7:24 pm by BillHartmann

. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
BillHartmann's picture

(post #63019, reply #13 of 24)

I ended up with 5 or 6 books from the library. Most of them came at one time.

And then life hit. Was too busy to really go through them. Will do this again in the fall/winter when I don't have much going on.

But the last one was The New Mediterranean Diet Cookbook. I did glance through it enough to know that I want it and ordered it yesterday.

I like all of the veggy recipes. That has always been a problem area for me.

And I notice that she is doing something that I just stumbled on.

Cheese as a "flavoring". A small amount of a sharp grated cheese can be sprinkled on veggies to add some flavor. But only using maybe a 1/3 or less of a "serving". And where available use the reduced fat version. It does not add that much saturated fat for the amount of flavor added.

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William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
Gretchen's picture

(post #63019, reply #14 of 24)

You are certainly correct about cheese sprinkled for flavor. But really, I wouldn't worry about overdoing it too  much. Get some good Parmigianno or Grana Padano--even asiago. It is very flavorful, very hard, grates well, and gives a ton of flavor, and a shot of salt--watch oversalting the veggies.

Gretchen

Gretchen
BillHartmann's picture

(post #63019, reply #15 of 24)

Well I don't use much salt. And when I do it is mostly kosher salt that take a pinch with my finger tips and sprinkle it on the finished food.

Like the cheese I like the burst of flavor rather than it becoming the main taste.

About the cheese I am both lose weight and watching my fats both because of weight and a heart problem. Although by LDL is off the chart on the good side with statin.

I lost close to 25 lbs in about 3 months. But since the end of May I have only lost 5 lbs and am trying to lose 10 more.

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William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
Gretchen's picture

(post #63019, reply #16 of 24)

A sprinkle of cheese will not harm your regimen. Remember that flavor will help sate your appetite also.

Gretchen

Gretchen
BillHartmann's picture

(post #63019, reply #18 of 24)

I was at the grocery today and am going to fix 3 recipes from the book.

But I have been jonesing for some ice cream all week and got a 1/2 gal. And of course it was zero fat, zero calories, NOT!

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William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
Heather's picture

(post #63019, reply #19 of 24)

I'm glad you liked the book, Bill. Let us know what you cook from it.

BillHartmann's picture

(post #63019, reply #22 of 24)

I fixed Green Beans with OO and Tomatoes.

Bulgur Pilaf
I don't think that I ever had any. I am sure that I have never fixed any. I like it and will have to use it some more. But I don't think that I want to do it to often.

Also I reduced the liquid. They wanted 3 cups for 1 1/4 cups bulgur. The package and I since looked up other recipes and they say the same or less. I think that it would have been swimming in soup if I used the full amount.

Braised Pork with Peppers. The recipe suggested that it be served only with rice or bulgur pilaf. But I was also fixing the beans. So I reduced the amount of peppers. But I might have reduced them to much.

But I tried to fix all of them at one time. And had not got everything prepped before I started. So the port cooked way too long and ended up dry. But that was my mistake.

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William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
Heather's picture

(post #63019, reply #23 of 24)

Sounds like a great combination of dishes, but a lot to handle when they were all new to you. Did you end up with some good leftovers?

BillHartmann's picture

(post #63019, reply #24 of 24)

Yes.

I live by myself and when I spend the time to cook like that I plan on many left overs.

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William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
Adele's picture

(post #63019, reply #20 of 24)

And of course it was zero fat, zero calories, NOT!


You should never, ever deprive yourself of ice cream or chocolate.  Just don't eat it all at one time and you'll be fine.  :)


 


But, but, it's SUPPOSED to taste like that!

But, but, it's SUPPOSED to taste like that!

BillHartmann's picture

(post #63019, reply #21 of 24)

"Just don't eat it all at one time and you'll be fine."

I would never do that.

I make it last at least 2 servings.

And I make sure that I wait 30 minutes between servings.

Seriously I don't have a problem cutting portion size down, way down, for meals.

But when I get something like ice cream it only last a couple of days. Thus I don't get it very often.

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William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe
Maedl's picture

(post #63019, reply #11 of 24)

I agree with Roz's suggestion of checking through some of the books at your library. That's what I did before I bought the New Mediterranean Cookbook. Actually, I think any of Nancy Harmon Jenkins' books are good--I have at least three of them. I like Lidia Bastianich's books too. You can watch her on PBS to boot. Claudia Roden is another good source. I find that I cook a lot of Turkish, Lebanese, and Moroccan dishes, so that's something else you might want to look for. Happy Eating!

Margie
Between the Alps and the Chesapeake Bay:
Where Food and Culture Intersect
www.alpsandbay.blogspot.com

Margie Between the Alps and the Chesapeake Bay: Where Food and Culture Intersect www.alpsandbay.blogspot.com