Fresh Fridays 
Nut for your Med Meals

One of the basic steps to following the Mediterranean Diet is finding ways to incorporate healthy fats into your daily meals. To equip your kitchen and your pantry, be sure to keep a supply of extra-virgin olive oil, olives, sunflower seeds, and avocados on hand. And don't forget about peanuts and nuts.

Although peanuts are legumes (they grow underground, not on trees) and deliver concentrated plant protein as do beans, they can be used in many of the same ways as nuts in the kitchen: They're delicious toasted, chopped, and sprinkled into whole grain dishes; used as a topping for vegetables; added to yogurt or cereals; and stirred into hummus to give it added texture.

Walnuts are especially popular in Mediterranean cooking, prized for their sweet, nutty flavor and nutritional benefits. They're a significant source of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids and they form the backbone of delicious spreads such as muhammara, a spicy paste or dip made with pomegranate molasses. And, with a little honey, walnuts can transform a serving of plain Greek yogurt into a sublime dessert treat.

The recipes that follow provide some ideas for building delicious dishes around the healthy fats in peanuts and walnuts.

Web links

   Sampling Day 2012
 Whole Grains Sampling Day

The Oldways Table Blog  
A Mediterranean Inspired Q&A

Read about the ideas behind a new course in Mediterranean Foods at West Virginia University.

Peanut Pestopeanut pesto   

Pesto is traditionally made with pine nuts, but if you experiment with other nuts you can come up with lots of new flavors. This version, using peanuts, is delicious on pasta or vegetables, and also makes a tasty dip. Store leftovers covered, in the refrigerator, for up to four days.  

and Red Pepper Relish and Feta
This simple dish packs a flavorful punch with the slightly bitter broccolini, spicy pepper relish, and a mild and creamy feta. Chopped walnuts add crunch and depth. About 3/4 cup of finely diced, jarred, roasted red peppers can be substituted for roasting your own. The relish will keep, refrigerated, for one week    
Brussels Sprouts and brussel sprouts and onions
Caramelized Onions
Looking for a new way to enjoy Brussels sprouts? This dish is perfect for any winter or late spring meal, and it goes nicely with other roasted vegetables, chicken, or seafood. Take your time sautéing the onions so they develop a rich, sweet flavor.  

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)     




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12 great ways to use olive oil  
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Molto Batali

 Molto Batali: Simple Family Meals from My Home to Yours
 By Mario Batali

 Discover some new ideas for serving simple, delicious Mediterranean-style meals to your family and friends.