Fresh Fridays 
Dressing up
When you plan a meal, how much time do you spend thinking about the salad dressing? While it doesn't take any time at all to make a delicious dressing, the knack of flavoring salads and vegetables with delicious oils, herbs, spices, mustard, garlic, nuts, and other ingredients is basic to mastering Mediterranean Diet cooking. The right dressing, in fact, makes all the difference between a good dish and a fabulous one.

If you're new to the world of making your own dressing, start with this simple yet fail safe Lemon Vinaigrette: In a jar with a tight-fitting lid, combine about 2/3 cup of great tasting extra-virgin olive oil with the juice of 1 lemon, 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard, and 1 teaspoon of honey. Shake to blend, season with salt and pepper to taste, and shake again. You can play with this basic mixture in all sorts of ways, from adding a pinch of dried herbs or a spoonful of chopped fresh herbs, to smashing some garlic and letting it sit in the dressing for an hour or so.
Substitute vinegar (balsamic or sherry) for the lemon, and try different oils (grapeseed, walnut, hazelnut, squash, or a blend of oils.)

Use a drizzle of tasty dressing to flavor grain salads, roasted and raw vegetables, or a dish of olives. Before you know it, you'll make the dressing first, and then figure out what comes next.

Here are a few recipes for tasty dressing and sauces.

Web links

stampede logo
Don't miss you chance to join the Whole Grains Stampede!  September is Whole Grains Month and every year the Whole Grains Council celebrates with special events and promotions. 
This year has proved to
be the best yet with the Stampede, a special sweepstakes for consumers which runs through September 30.

Whole grain month-Sept.

Arugula-Walnut Pesto  Walnut pesto  

Pesto, the delicious green sauce for pasta, is traditionally made with pine nuts and basil. Here's
a fresh and delicious alternative that uses arugula
and walnuts.  Thin with a bit more olive oil to make
a tasty dressing.

Brussels Sprouts with Farro Brussel sprouts  

and Shallot Honey Vinaigrette  

When roasted, brussels sprouts become crispy on
the outside and tender and sweet on the inside.
Pair them with farro, a hearty grain, and season
with this delicious dressing, to bring out their sharp
yet light flavor.     

Chopped Romaine and Cucumber Romaine and cucumber  
Salad with Yogurt Dressing
This crunchy salad is layered with flavor and texture, yet it's made with very basic and affordable
ingredients. The secret is in the preparation.
Don't skimp on the fresh herbs. They make all
the difference.    
Tarator Sauce Tarator sauce
There are dozens of ways to make this traditional Turkish sauce, which is delicious on roasted vegetables, falafel, fish, and meats. Tahini, a paste made from sesame seeds, is easy to find in major supermarkets and Mediterranean grocery stores.

Fresh Fridays is a bi-weekly celebration of Mediterranean eating and living. We hope our Friday recipes will remind you just how easy and delicious eating the Mediterranean way can be.

To find even more delicious Mediterranean recipes please visit:   

 Mediterranean Foods Alliance (MFA)   





12 great ways to use olives  
Med Diet USA
2010 garlic festival poster
Hudson Valley Garlic Festival
September 24-25, 2011
Saugerties, New York

Garlic festivals seem to be gaining in popularity. This
one, at the foot of the Catskills, offers tons of organic, locally grown garlic, a chance to chat with dozens of growers, and chefs to inspire you.    


Oldways bookstore

Food Rules

Food Rules

by Michael Pollen  

We love the straightforward
and simple statements in this
directive for healthy eating
from one of America's most popular sustainable food activists.This book, which
echoes many of the Med Diet
tenets, makes a great gift.