Crete: The Roots of the Mediterranean Diet
enjoying the benefits of one of the world's healthiest cuisines wherever you live
de Nikki Rose
Nikki Rose, a Greek American Professional Chef-Instructor and Writer, has been hosting teachers, students and journalists in Crete for over 14 years through her project Crete’s Culinary Sanctuaries (CCS). Her focus celebrates and helps protect Crete’s cultural and culinary heritage. The concepts of the frequently studied and highly regarded Mediterranean Diet originated in Crete. Chef Rose, with her CCS initiatives, demonstrates that Cretan cuisine is not just a diet, but is a way of life that has much to offer our on-going pursuit of healthy and sustainable approaches to eating. In this concise, information-packed book, Rose shares her knowledge, and passion for her heritage, along with practical strategies for applying the celebrated concepts of Cretan cuisine, wherever you live. Rose has received numerous awards from National Geographic, the United Nations and many other organizations for her success in creating sustainable travel/community-based tourism and culinary projects that bring focus to the expanding inquiry into sustainability. Proceeds from this book benefit ongoing CCS initiatives.
This is one of the best books on the Mediterranean Diet that I have come across. Taken from the way the people of Crete (the healthiest in the world) have eaten for centuries Nikki provides you with all the practical information you need to eat for optimal health. She shares with you how to prepare vegetables, fish, chicken, beans, soups, and stews the delicious Greek way. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to improve their health while experiencing all the joys of Mediterranean eating.
-- George Mateljan, Philanthropist
Award-winning author of the World's Healthiest Foods
Much has been written about the Mediterranean diet, but Nikki Rose’s little book just might be my favorite. It is so to the point, so clear, so accessible and of course, so delicious if you cook from it. It really shows that you don’t need a thousand recipes or an entire day in the kitchen to eat well and with great pleasure. That the pictures include people, plants, and vistas as well as cooked dishes shows that this is about a way of life, not just about recipes. As it should be. And I love that it includes chapters devoted to kids and to Lenten dishes, as well as wine and more. I’m impressed that Nikki Rose could say so much in so few pages!
--Deborah Madison, chef and author of Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone and 10 other books.
Many tout the benefits of the Mediterranean Diet but with little cultural context for the rich milieu in which the diet and its benefits are enjoyed. And enjoyed is the fitting term. As Nikki Rose shows in this slim but rich book, the people, the land and its flavors
are inextricably linked. As cooks, gardeners, and consumers we have much to learn. Lushly illustrated, with attention given to the foods, recipes, characters, and traditions of the island in digestible snippets, this is the cultural study of food and nutrition as it should be done.
-- Jonathan Deutsch, Ph.D.
Professor, Culinary Arts, Kingsborough Community College, CUNY
Public Health, CUNY Graduate Center
As a whole foods chef steeped in the belief that traditional foods are life sustaining and need to be part of our daily diet, Nikki’s book is one of my most coveted resources. Having been on several of her food seminars, I can attest, that what she presents, shares and teaches in her book is as if I were back with her, on the Island of Crete. If, as we are now beginning to appreciate that health supportive foods begins with good ingredients, but also includes the life sustaining cultural practices which accompany such foods, then Nikki’s book introduces those necessary backstories. All I can say is come and learn how to cook the traditional Mediterranean diet from Nikki and her friends on Crete.
-- Beth Kersey, Alaska Food Sovereignty and Edible Landscapes
and Alaska Seed Savers and Traditional Foods Project
The "return to basics" exhortation of many culinarians may very well start with the age-old food traditions of Crete. Nikki Rose's creation, featuring simple Mediterranean recipes, makes this even more relevant to our times.
-- Lina Romasanta
hospitality industry consultant/food and beverage specialist
Nikki Rose is a Greek American professional chef-instructor (Culinary Institute of America graduate), writer and seminar director. She has worked in fine dining and journalism in the USA and France. She is founder of Crete's Culinary Sanctuaries, an award winning program for best practices in Responsible Travel. Nikki formed CCS in 1997 to help support residents working on action programs to protect their cultural and natural heritage. CCS is an all-local of over 40 small businesses and individuals -- organic farmers, artisan food producers, musicians, archaeologists, historians, ecologists, sustainable lodge owners and others. CCS organizes a range of dynamic seminars for the public and academic institutions. Classes are conducted at historic sites, in rural communities, and organic farms. CCS has received awards from National Geographic, the World Tourism Forum for Peace and Sustainable Development, and is featured in National Geographic, NPR, New York Times and Lonely Planet.