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Mediterranean

The Mediterranean region is made up of 21 various countries that surround the Mediterranean sea. While many in this country think that this zone is only made up of some of the region's European members, specifically Spain, France, Italy and Greece, in actuality it also includes countries from two other continents -- Asia (including Turkey and Syria) and Africa (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya and Egypt). So naturally the spices and seasonings used to flavor the food from this eclectic area are also going to be quite diverse.

For the last 30 years or so Americans have been told the spiel of how healthy the Mediterranean diet is but it's been dummied down into consume more fish, olive oil and red wine and eat less red meat. The reality is that this simplistic version has veered a bit off its original course.  There is absolutely some scientific research on this but it is based on the diets of 7 countries back in the 1950's that showed people from the island of Crete had lower instances of cardio vascular disease, various forms of cancer and had a longer life expectancy (many living to more than 100 years old).

These are some of the most interesting and flavorful spices and seasonings found in the Mediterranean. 

 

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