The recipes on this website have been chosen to represent the California interpretation of healthy Mediterranean eating. Most of these recipes will be based on foods grown in California and known to provide health benefits. Fruits and vegetables, nuts, extra-virgin olive oil, whole grains, legumes and fish are the foundation for The California Mediterranean Diet and are the basis for the featured recipes. Chicken and dairy products will be included in moderate amounts. The recipes will have less emphasis on beef, pork, lamb and processed foods including processed flour, sugar and oil. Animal fat including butter is also limited. This is not the place to come for a low-fat chocolate chip cookie or something like that! But you might find a dessert recipe based primarily on luscious California seasonal fruits or nuts.
You will also find that most of these recipes have vague amounts of ingredients listed. If I do not list an exact amount, you can feel comfortable altering the recipe to use the amount you have on hand. For example, if you bought 5 tomatoes from the farmer’s market and my recipe calls for 6, just use the 5. Or if you brought home 7, use all of them. If you like garlic and onions, put in more, but if you don’t, put in less. Don’t be afraid to experiment in the kitchen, it is only food! The one exception to this rule is baking and use of spices and seasonings. Be careful not to get too creative with mixing in weird spices and seasonings, or using more than the amounts recommended, and the amount of ingredients such as flour and baking powder etc. in baked goods should be measured.
If you are new to cooking, don’t be afraid of it; just dig in. Despite the proliferation of over the top TV shows showing celebrity chefs cooking complicated dishes, cooking is not a spectator sport! Preparation of simple foods using seasonal ingredients has been done by every human alive since the discovery of fire. Start with the best fresh ingredients and don’t mess them up by doing too much; that is the number one rule for cooking The California Mediterranean Diet. The goal of my recipes it to guide you to using what you picked from your garden plot, or the seasonal foods you purchased from a sustainable source, to prepare a healthy and delicious meal for your friends or family.
© 2015. Dayna Green-Burgeson RD, CDE. All Rights Reserved.