If you think about it, you’ve been slaving away in the broiling sun for most of the day, probably several kilometres from where you live, or bobbing about on the briny catching fish under an equally broiling sun, come to that. You don’t want a bit of grilled sea bass with a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil and dribbled over it, with a heap of those showy lettuce leaves on the side or stretch it, some grilled courgettes and fennel slices, sprinkled with capers and doused in olive oil, and maybe a square of cheese afterwards and a peach to finish at the end of the day. You want something of heft and substance to fill your belly and give you enough energy to face the following day. You’d want a big bowl of pasta, with chunks of bread on the side; a sausage or two fried in pig fat with some chickpeas or lentils on the side; and a slice of pie (made with pig fat), all washed down by several glasses of really rough red wine. And even if there was a salad, you’d dress it with warm pig fat and vinegar and eat it as quickly as possible before the fat congealed.
That doesn’t sound much like the Mediterranean Diet being promoted so vigorously, does it?
I’ve nothing against the New Wave Med Diet, as such. I’m sure if we all kept to it, we’d all be healthier, fitter and live longer. It just isn’t the Mediterranean Diet of the Mediterranean. It’s a fine marketing concept under which we can be sold all sorts of foods at ramped up prices.