I recently got the Ultimate Mediterranean Diet Cookbook, by Amy Riolo. She is an award-winning writer, well-educated, and a distinguished chef who’s passionate about cooking and preserving the authenticity in traditional recipes. Amy is multilingual, and has lived and worked in many places in the Mediterranean region including Italy, where she immersed herself in the culture and reap the benefits of its healthful lifestyle. She is a culture expert, and very knowledgable in global cuisines and traditions. In addition to her amazing talent, she is beautiful and has a contagious smile. I have been following her on all her social media outlets, and I always take joy in all her food posts and videos. When I found out about her book, I couldn’t wait to get a copy. I’ve enjoyed her delectable, easy-to-read recipes, everything is made fresh and on the healthy side. I also love the captivating and vibrant food photography . Every recipe has a cultural tip on the Mediterranean tradition. In the book, Amy explained that she learned that food was not just something to fill our stomachs, but a powerful tool that affected our moods, daily lives, holidays, and wellbeing. She points out that food in that region is also used as medicine, and the Mediterranean diet is not just a diet, it is a lifestyle. It’s a combination of a healthy diet rich in grains, fruits, vegetables, olive oils, fish, lean meats, daily and social activities. Amy also recommends to eat meals together with loved ones whenever possible. She encourages you to maintain a healthy diet on a daily basis, and to save the “bad food” for special occasions. I made her Citrus-Marinated Scallops and they came out delicious. I served them with a side of roasted butternut squash, and couscous. The recipe I am sharing with you today is an excerpt from The Ultimate Mediterranean Diet Cookbook by Amy Riolo.
This delicious and impressive dish can be cooked in minutes and served as an appetizer or main course. These scallops also taste great when tossed into a salad or pasta, rice, and other grain-based dishes.
Yield: 4 servings
- Juice and zest of 2 lemons
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
- Unrefined sea salt or salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1.5 pounds (680 g) dry scallops, side muscle removedPreparation:
In a large shallow bowl or baking dish, combine the lemon juice and zest, olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic. Mix well to combine. Add the scallops to the marinade; cover and refrigerate 1 hour. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Drain the scallops and place them in skillet. Cook 4 to 5 minutes per side, until cooked through.
All throughout the region, scallops are increasingly being enjoyed raw in beautiful carpaccios. To make a carpaccio, simply place the scallops on a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the freezer for at least 1 hour. When the scallops are almost hard, remove them from the freezer and with sharp filleting knife, carefully cut the scallops widthwise into paper-thin slices. Place them on a platter. Drizzle with a vinaigrette and serve with greens.
I hope you enjoyed my book review, and the delicious scallop recipe. If you are a health “nut”, I highly recommend this cookbook. Amy Riolo is an advocate for healthy cooking with the freshest of ingredients. To obtain the book, just click on the link, The Ultimate Mediterranean Diet Cookbook.
“Amy Riolo has created an authentic, yet accessible, guide to eating the Mediterranean diet as it is meant to be eaten. This book captures the Mediterranean essence with delicious recipes form a cuisine that is accessible, flavorful, and nutritionally sound.” Lidia Bastianich, LidiasItaly.com
This lovely book will make a nice addition to your collection of cookbooks, or a nice gift for someone who loves to cook.
Happy Reading and Happy Cooking!