Unlike other Mediterranean cuisines, wine is a prominent element of Southern European dining, both as a flavor enhancement in cooked dishes and on its own. Lamb, mutton, and goat meat are the dominant protein in North African dishes, although chicken, and even beef, make regular culinary appearances. Olive trees are prevalent throughout the region, and the distinctive oil is a major export of many Mediterranean countries. The Mediterranean diet isn't strictly plant-based but it can be plant-based, meaning that eating meat and animal products are not a cornerstone of this diet. Vegetables appear in dishes in a variety of forms: baked, roasted, sautéed grilled, puréed, and served fresh in salads. Mediterranean food Mediterranean cuisine is the food from the cultures adjacent to the Mediterranean Sea. The countries … This information should not be considered complete, up to date, and is not intended to be used in place of a visit, consultation, or advice of a legal, medical, or any other professional. Rather, it is a label referring to the culinary trends shared by a diverse array of peoples that live in the region around the Mediterranean Sea. To be exact, there is not merely one Mediterranean diet. Pork is also consumed more by these countries than the rest of the Mediterranean, and is more prevalent than goat, mutton, or lamb. The world’s earliest civilizations bordered the Mediterranean Sea, their development bolstered by the rich soil and temperate climate that made agricultural production thrive. In general, it is a healthy diet, but it includes the main elements of the Mediterranean cuisine, such as a glass of red wine and olive oil. A preponderant use of fresh herbs characterizes Mediterranean cuisine. The sunny, mild Mediterranean climate yields an agricultural bounty that heavily influences the vegetable-dominant cuisines of the region. Breakfast Coffee or tea with plain Greek yogurt topped with a drizzle of honey and walnuts. Grains take the form of rice or flat breads like pita and lavash. Although this region spans a wide variety of cultures, the historical connections of the region have led to there being many common elements in the foods. Yogurt and fresh cheeses like feta, halumi, and lebanah feature prominently in Eastern Mediterranean cuisine: yogurt appears in a variety of sauces or as a condiment, while cheese can be either cooked into dishes or eaten raw in a multitude of culinary contexts. Plus a glass or two of red wine. As the point of intersection between Asia, Europe, and Africa, with major civilizations located in each area, the Mediterranean was geographically destined to become a major trading hub. Harissa and ras el hanout are two fiery spice mixtures used predominantly in Moroccan cuisine, giving a characteristic heat to stews and sauces. The pungent, sometimes bitter oil works its way into a variety of dishes, and is used both as a cooking agent and a dressing. Copyright TableAgent.com © Restaurant Agent Inc. How to Buffet: A Complete Guide to All-You-Can-Eat Buffet Etiquette. While Mediterranean cuisine is understood to be a unified culinary tradition in this country, in reality, there is a vast amount of cultural variance in the cooking found in this geographic region. So essentially, Greek is Mediterranean. Unlike many other ethnic cuisines, Mediterranean cuisine is not the product of a specific ethnic group or culture. Southern European cuisine, which is found in Italy, Southern France, and Spain, contains specific ingredients that distinguish it from the rest of Europe’s cooking traditions and other Mediterranean countries. Although Mediterranean cuisine isn’t governed by a single culture, it is very much the product of cultural influence and exchange. How to pronounce mediterranean food? The Mediterranean Sea is actually part of the Atlantic Ocean; a total of 21 countries have a coastline on the Mediterranean. In fact, many chefs that create one-of-a-kind Mediterranean dishes are only concentrating on the ingredients, not whether the food offers a health benefit. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All content on this website, including dictionary, thesaurus, literature, geography, and other reference data is for informational purposes only. Foods to avoid. Mediterranean Food A generic term for foods produced in the littoral Mediterranean, which is tipped toward grains, pasta, rice, nuts, fruits and vegetables and away from red meat, refined sugar and junk food Segen's Medical Dictionary. The region surrounding the Mediterranean Sea. GREEK is MEDITERRANEAN. The region surrounding the Mediterranean Sea. The Mediterranean diet is very similar to the government's healthy eating advice, which is set out in the Eatwell Guide. A Mediterranean menu is much broader than Greek inspired flavors. Mediterranean definition: 1. the sea surrounded by southern Europe, North Africa, and Western Asia 2. the countries next to…. The Mediterranean’s rocky terrain can’t typically support larger herding animals like cows, limiting meat options to smaller domesticates like goats, sheep, pigs, and chicken, as well as some wild game. Meat is generally used sparingly in Mediterranean cuisine, and, in most of the Mediterranean, tends to be grilled. The Mediterranean diet differs significantly from a standard Western diet largely because it does not include significant amounts of red meat and dairy products like milk, yogurt, and cheese. This diet focuses on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, healthy fats, and fish. North African cuisine is characterized by an abundant use of spices. Lamb, mutton, poultry, and goat meat are prominent proteins, and are typically grilled—either whole, as skewered chunks of meat like kebabs, or ground and skewered like kibbeh—or spit-fired like gyros. Having a decent understanding of these countries and their cooking styles can help you have a better appreciation for this way of life. A multitude of different grains are consumed: leavened breads, pasta, and rice are staples. Bulgar wheat is also used, predominantly in salads like tabouleh. The climate and geography of the region is naturally suited to growing herbaceous plants, both indigenous and imported. Mediterranean diet: A diet traditionally followed in Greece, Crete, southern France, and parts of Italy that emphasizes fruits and vegetables, nuts, grains, olive oil (as opposed to butter) and grilled or steamed chicken and seafood (as opposed to red meat). Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, and Libya all regularly use cumin, coriander, saffron, cinnamon, cloves, chilies, saffron, and paprika in their cooking traditions. Olives themselves are a regular ingredient in Mediterranean cuisine, adding a punchy, fermented, acidity to dishes.Fresh vegetables dominate Mediterranean cuisine, with a wide variety taking center stage in dishes throughout the region. While there is some cultural variation, eggplant, artichokes, squash, tomatoes, legumes, onions, mushrooms, okra, cucumbers, and a variety of greens and lettuces all flourish in this region and are commonly used. Health benefits. Mediterranean synonyms, Mediterranean pronunciation, Mediterranean translation, English dictionary definition of Mediterranean. While there is some cultural variation in the use of certain herbs, overall the culinary traditions of the Mediterranean use basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary, marjoram, parsley, dill, mint, garlic, tarragon, fennel, cilantro, and saffron.
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