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Mediterranean cuisine is the food and methods of preparation used by the people of the Mediterranean Basin. The idea of a Mediterranean cuisine originates with the cookery writer Elizabeth David's book, A Book of Mediterranean Food (1950) and was amplified by other writers working in English. Many writers define the three core elements of the cuisine as the olive, wheat, and the grape, yielding olive oil, bread and pasta, and wine; other writers deny that the widely varied foods of the Mediterranean basin constitute a cuisine at all. A common definition of the geographical area covered, proposed by David, follows the distribution of the olive tree. The region spans a wide variety of cultures with distinct cuisines, in particular (going anticlockwise around the region) the Maghrebi, Egyptian, Levantine, Ottoman (Turkish), Greek, Italian, Provençal, and Spanish, though some authors include additional cuisines. Portuguese cuisine, in particular, is partly Mediterranean in character. The historical connections of the region, as well as the impact of the Mediterranean Sea on the region's climate and economy, mean that these cuisines share dishes beyond the core trio of oil, bread, and wine, such as roast lamb or mutton, meat stews with vegetables and tomato (for example, Spanish andrajos), vegetable stews (Provençal ratatouille, Spanish pisto, Italian ciambotta), and the salted cured fish roe, bottarga, found across the region. Spirits based on anise are drunk in many countries around the Mediterranean. The cooking of the area is not to be confused with the Mediterranean diet, made popular because of the apparent health benefits of a diet rich in olive oil, wheat and other grains, fruits, vegetables, and a certain amount of seafood, but low in meat and dairy products. Mediterranean cuisine encompasses the ways that these and other ingredients, including meat, are dealt with in the kitchen, whether they are health-giving or not. Geography Various authors have defined the scope of Mediterranean cooking either by geography or by its core ingredients. Elizabeth David, in her A Book of Mediterranean Food (1950), defines her scope as "the cooking of the Mediterranean shores" and sketches out the geographical limits: from Gibraltar to the Bosphorus, down the Rhone Valley, through the great seaports of Marseilles, Barcelona, and Genoa, across to Tunis and Alexandria, embracing all the Mediterranean islands, Corsica, Sicily, Sardinia, Crete, the Cyclades, Cyprus (where the Byzantine influence begins to be felt), to the mainland of Greece and the much disputed territories of Syria, the Lebanon, Constantinople, and Smyrna. Despite this definition, David's book focuses largely on Spain, France, Italy, and Greece. She defines this region as coextensive with the range of the olive tree: "those blessed lands of sun and sea and olive trees". The olive's natural distribution is limited by frost and by availability of water. It is therefore constrained to a more or less narrow zone around the Mediterranean Sea, except in the Maghreb and in Spain, where it is distributed more widely, and on the islands of the Mediterranean, where it is widespread.The Tunisian historian Mohamed Yassine Essid similarly defines the region by the olive's presence, along with bread, wheat, and the grape as the "basic products of Mediterranean folk cuisine": Mediterranean cuisine is defined by the presence of fundamental elements which are said to play a more important role than others, reflecting a community of beliefs and practices which transcend religions, languages and even societies. The olive tree, the emblematic tree on more than one account, traces the bounds of a frontier of landscapes and lives on either side of which the Mediterranean begins or ends. Above Montelimar, nicknamed "Gates of Provence", is the limit of the olive. Other authors question that there is any such common core: The belief in a common core, emerging from a claim to authority over that kernel of "Mediterranean-ness," is what underlies writing describing the culinary Mediterranean, yet it seems that only from far away does a unified Mediterranean exist. The closer one gets to that common core, the less it is visible, until the food of Umbria comes to seem entirely different from the food of Tuscany, and to compare either to the food of Greece would be absurd. The very idea of a Mediterranean ensemble—be it onions and olive oil and tomatoes or some other combination entirely—presupposes not only a shared history but a unified history, an imagined moment in which the Mediterranean presented a single culture that over time has, like a language, split and branched and flowered into the wild variety of contemporary cuisine. Some writers include the cuisines of the eastern Adriatic coast of Dalmatia – Albanian, Montenegrin, and Croatian, while most do not mention them. Some writers also include areas not touching the Mediterranean Sea or supporting olive cultivation, including Serbian, Macedonian, and Portuguese cuisine. Key ingredients Essid identifies the "trinity" of basic ingredients of traditional Mediterranean cuisine as the olive, wheat, and the grape, yielding oil, bread, and wine respectively. The archaeologist Colin Renfrew calls this the "Mediterranean triad". Olive The olive appears to come from the region of Persia and Mesopotamia, at least 6,000 years ago. It spread from there to nearby areas, and has been cultivated since the early Bronze Age (up to 3,150 BC) in southern Turkey, the Levant, and Crete. The ten countries with the largest harvests (in 2011) are all near the Mediterranean (Portugal being the tenth largest): together, they produce 95% of the world's olives.The olive yields bitter fruits, made edible by curing and fermentation, and olive oil. Some 90% of the fruit production (1996) goes into olive oil. The Mediterranean region accounts for the world's highest consumption of olive oil: in 2014, the highest-consuming country, Greece, used 17 kg per head; Italy, 12 kg, Spain, 13 kg; the United States for comparison used only 1 kg per head. Wheat Wheat was domesticated in the Fertile Crescent, in and near the Levant some 10,000 years ago. Its ancestors include wild emmer wheat; this was hybridised, harvested and sown to create domestic strains with larger grains, in ears that shatter less readily than wild forms. It was spread across the Mediterranean region as far as Spain by 5,000 BC.Wheat is a staple food in the Mediterranean region. Wheat bread was already critically important in the empire of Ancient Rome, which included the entire region; at that time, around 2,000 years ago, North Africa was the "breadbasket" of the empire. Other staple wheat-based Mediterranean foods include pasta and semolina (wheat middlings) products such as couscous and bulgur. In turn, these are made into dishes such as the Greek dessert galaktoboureko (milk börek), consisting of filo pastry parcels around a .... Discover the Clifford A Wright popular books. Find the top 100 most popular Clifford A Wright books.

Best Seller Clifford A Wright Books of January 2022

101 Home Decorating Ideas: Easy Ways to Decorating & Beautify Home on a Budget book summary, reviews and downlod

101 Home Decorating Ideas: Easy Ways to Decorating & Beautify Home on a Budget


The home is a refuge and a reflection of one’s personality. Make it more comfortable and suited to the needs of everyone living in it.Decorating a home is a great way to make i...

Nabokov and his Books book summary, reviews and downlod

Nabokov and his Books


Duncan White draws on previously unpublished and neglected material to tell the story of Nabokov the professional writer; to explore how he balanced his late modernist aesthetics with the de...

Cold Warriors book summary, reviews and downlod

Cold Warriors


In this brilliant account of the literary war within the Cold War, novelists and poets become embroiled in a dangerous game of betrayal, espionage, and conspiracy at the heart of the vicious...

Best Seller Clifford A Wright Audio Books of January 2022

Love Like Death (Unabridged) MP3 Audiobook

Love Like Death (Unabridged)

Sci-Fi & Fantasy$17.99

Fallen, the last Tuatha de Danann, is in love with a teenage mortal, Blake Adamson. The Last Sidhe cannot bring herself to trust a mortal. But she discovers what happens when you believe you...

The Dragon's Banner (Unabridged) MP3 Audiobook

The Dragon's Banner (Unabridged)

Sci-Fi & Fantasy$15.99

The empire that ruled the world is crumbling, and darkness is falling. Cities burn, armies pillage, and warlords struggle for domination. In the shadow of Rome's fall, the land of Britannia ...

Descendant: Descendants Saga, Book 2 (Unabridged) MP3 Audiobook

Descendant: Descendants Saga, Book 2 (Unabridged)

Kids & Young Adults$16.99

Brody has defeated Mr. Black and his terrifying dolls, restoring their human counterparts in London, but at what cost? Oliver James has been consigned to the angelic prison of Tartarus where...

The Innkeeper's Son: The Harven Legacy (Unabridged) MP3 Audiobook

The Innkeeper's Son: The Harven Legacy (Unabridged)

Sci-Fi & Fantasy$24.99

Before Desirmor came and broke the peace of the Alexidus monarchy with his army of dark beasts, Princess Harmony Alexidus spoke a prophecy of his rise and fall. He would destroy the warriors...

Cold Warriors MP3 Audiobook

Cold Warriors


A brilliant, invigorating account of the great writers on both sides of the Iron Curtain who played the dangerous games of espionage, dissidence and subversion that changed the course of the...

Fallen: Descendants Saga, Book 1 (Unabridged) MP3 Audiobook

Fallen: Descendants Saga, Book 1 (Unabridged)

Kids & Young Adults$16.99

A heavenly war rages among the Fallen that threatens to tear Victorian era England asunder. As the Descendants of these angelic warriors take sides in the escalating conflict, Brody West arr...

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