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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

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Secrets of the Mediterranean Kitchen: Living and Eating with Pleasure and Health

Evening Program with Book Signing and Reception

Thursday, July 25, 2019 - 6:45 p.m.
Code: 1M2034

Amy Riolo in an Egyptian spice bazaar in Istanbul (Photo: Luigi Diotaiuti)

The cuisine of the Mediterranean is renowned for its delectable flavors and fresh, healthful ingredients. All of the varied cultures of the region consider preparing and enjoying food as one of life’s greatest communal pleasures, and in each a respect for time-honored culinary traditions runs deep.   

Join cookbook author, culinary tour leader, and Mediterranean lifestyle expert Amy Riolo for a journey that winds through the markets, kitchens, and tables of France, Italy, Greece, Spain, Morocco, Turkey, Lebanon, and Egypt. She examines how the foodways of this diverse range of countries reflect the shared heritage of the Mediterranean region in highly distinctive and delicious ways.

Discover the history behind culinary customs and favorite dishes, the health and nutritional benefits of eating the Mediterranean way, how to procure and cook with the highest-quality ingredients from the region, and tips on how to reproduce the mouthwatering flavors of a rural kitchen, an Ottoman palace, or an island villa here at home.

The evening concludes with a reception of foods inspired by the Mediterranean region. Riolo’s books The Mediterranean Cookbook and The Mediterranean Diabetes Cookbook are available for sale and signing.


Beef meatballs scented with Greek spices in a sweet and spicy tomato sauce

North African Spice-Dusted Sweet Potato Bites
Roasted sweet potatoes seasoned with olive oil, seal salt, ground pepper, cinnamon, and Mediterranean spices

Petite Focaccia Sandwiches
Grilled chicken, Swiss cheese, pesto aioli, and caramelized onions
Prosciutto, fontina cheese, olive oil, and arugula
Eggplant, pesto aioli, smoked mozzarella, sun-dried tomatoes, and spinach

Spinach Fritatta
Warm Italian vegetarian egg tart served with roasted red-pepper sauce

Olive Oil, Cherry and Almond Cake
A moist and dense almond-and-olive-oil cake baked with cherries and dusted with powdered sugar

Mint limonada (spiked with vodka)
Still and sparkling water

S. Dillon Ripley Center
1100 Jefferson Dr SW
Metro: Smithsonian (Mall exit)