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Jesse Ziff Cool Talks About the Old Ways

My way of cooking, both at home and in the restaurants, changed from those early days of working with Oldways. The information I got from traveling and attending seminars opened the door to some very important core values in my kitchens. I shifted how to use fats, using less butter and more olive oil. Through the Mediterranean Diet Pyramid, I learned to “shift the center of the plate,” and include smaller amounts of proteins.  The sensibility of this way of cooking and eating took me back to my own Italian heritage and how my family ate when I was a child. My cooking remains inspired by simple, whole and real food ingredients that ultimately manifests in the most beautiful, healthy, and delicious way to eat.

I have so many memories of traveling to obscure places in the Mediterranean with Dun, Sara, journalists, nutritionists, scientists and other cooks (chefs). We learned first hand by cooking with the locals in Morocco, Greece, Italy and Spain, tasting their wild or hand-crafted products and bringing those nourishing, life supportive ethics about food back home.

Through our travels, we learned that he Mediterranean Diet is not just about food! We walked through mountain fields with the locals to pick wild greens or met a fisherman, cooked and ate local goat, and sat at tables in small villages where pride in cooking and heritage was paramount.  Yes, we danced and drank good wine and brought back these old ways, infusing them into the new definition of healthy food that is now considered mainstream, gourmet.

-Jesse Ziff Cool

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