I nearly forgot to mention that I learned something somewhat shocking about olive oil. We were told (by the olive oil producers, mind you), that you can fry using olive oil instead of other oils. Interesting!
Well, this brings me to why I hung around Europe and the Mediterranean for so long. I wanted to attend Israel Nutrition Week, which is an Israel conference in partnership with the American Overseas Dietetics Association (AKA AODA, which is the international affiliate of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics). This was our (yes, I am a member of AODA) regional conference and it was not only a good topic, but a fantastic location and I was looking forward to seeing friends that I only get to see every so often.
I was so happy to see that coffee was provided by Aroma, which is a brand I know already because I have spent time in Israel. I really like this coffee, so I was happy to get some at the conference.
The conference was in English, but some presenters spoke in Hebrew, and for this there were translators provided. Actually, this went both ways. The only problem was that not all sessions were provided with translation. At least most of what I was interested in was available with this service.
They also had an expo floor like at FNCE, but not nearly as large. Here are some pictures from some of the products I looked at on the first day of the conference.
This is my favorite brand of yogurt, Muller, and I have not had it since I left Portugal, so I was more than happy to give this sample a try.
What a great topic, and so relevant for this region! The experts on the Mediterranean diet are all located here, so most of these people were the ones providing information and discussing the research.
Here is someone from the Ministry of Health in Israel speaking, and sitting at the table is Sylvia Escott-Stump (who just finished her term as president of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics), Naomi Trostler, and and Erin Boyd-Kappelhof (the AODA president). This was taken during the plenary session held on the first day.
I really didn't take too many pictures while in the sessions, but I did hear a lot of interesting presenters share some interesting information. I will share some of the highlights in a later post.
Most of my friends here were also presenters, so they had a function to attend that evening. I decided that a swim in the Mediterranean was essential, and that this needed to be followed by a Mediterranean dinner sitting by the water. I had perfect timing to catch the sunset.
I picked a restaurant where they provide you with many salads before you are served your entree. Here is a spicy fish dish, beets, green salad, potato salad, hummus, tomatoes (salsa style), tomatoes in a herbed dressing, cauliflower and yogurt dip, all served with bread. There were more salads I think, but the server knew I couldn't eat it all since it was just me.
Here is a close up of the spicy fish.
For my entree I ordered the sea bream, grilled and served open. It came with potatoes. It was definitely a good choice.
I was also served this Israeli salad with my meal.
It was definitely way too much food, but I wanted to give it all a try, even if it was just a few bites of each.
I sat by the water for a bit after dinner, which gave me some time to work up a little appetite for some frozen yogurt.
I topped mine with chocolate chips, cherries and date syrup. Yum!
It was a long, but very interesting day. I am really glad I was able to fit in a swim and then enjoy a nice Mediterranean dinner.
QUESTIONS: What do you think of as traditional to the Mediterranean diet? What was the last conference you attended?